annundriel: ([pl] Hace Mucho Tiempo)
Don't you just love it when you're reading something and you randomly come to a passage that illustrates something you've felt or believed or argued previously?

The other day I started reading Christine de Pizan's The Book of the City of Ladies, which was written in 1405. I picked it up at the graduation dinner for English majors. My Chaucer professor thought I'd enjoy it. She wasn't wrong. I know we talked about the author in Masculinity in the Middle Ages, but I can't remember now if we actually read anything by her.

When I took Texts in Context, one of the works we studied was Paradise Lost. I wrote my final paper on it and part of whatever argument I was making, either in the paper itself or with the professor himself, was that the whole "woman is the downfall of man" thing is essentially a load of crap. In Christianity, Christ is God's greatest gift to man. But Christ would never have walked the earth had Eve not taken a bite from that fruit. And what does anything good mean to us if we've never experienced bad?

Anyway. The Book of the City of Ladies has to do with the author becoming depressed because so many male scholars and poets write about women being vessels of evil and vice. That they carry those things within them as well as originate them. She becomes depressed, because that is not how she sees herself or her fellow women, and begins to doubt herself. Until she is visited by Ladies Reason, Rectitude, and Justice who tell her they will help her build a City of Ladies. Essentially. I was reading it last night and ran across this from Reason:

"...thanks to a woman, man reigns with God. And if anyone would say that man was banished because of Lady Eve, I tell you that he gained more through Mary than he lost through Eve when humanity was conjoined to the Godhead, which would never have taken place if Eve's misdeed had not occurred. Thus man and woman should be glad for this sin, through which such an honor has come about. For as low as human nature fell through this creature woman, was human nature lifted higher by the same creature."
- p. 24

I may have gone a bit flaily-hands over it. I mean, it brings in Mary as sort of the...flip-side of Eve, but it also says, "Thus man and woman should be glad for this sin, through which such an honor has come about." And that, right there, is exactly the thing I was trying to argue. There it is, written 605 years ago.

I think that's neat.
annundriel: ([merlin] Here Upon Earth)
For the last couple of days, I've had "The Wife of Bath's Tale" stuck in my head. The first seven lines are circling there like lyrics from a song. I guess I blame the Medieval Poetry Reading. Otherwise it would just be other bits of Chaucer making me crazy.

In th'olde dayes of the king Arthour,
Of which that Britons speken greet honour,
All was this land fulfild of fairye.
The elf-queene with her joly compaignye
Daunced ful ofte in many a grene mede.
This was the olde opinion, as I rede--
I spake of may hundred yeres ago.

But now kan no man seen none elves mo,
For new the grete charitee and prayers
Of limitours and othere hooly freres,
That serchen every lond and every streem
As thikke as motes in the sonne-beem,
Blessinge halles, chambres, kichenes, boures,
Citees, burghes, castels, hye toures,
Thropes, bernes, shipnes, daieryes.
This maketh that there been no fairyes.
For there as wont to walken was an elf
There walketh now the limitour himself,
In undermeles and in morweninges,
And seyth his matins and his hooly thinges
As he gooth in his limitacioun.
Wommen may go new saufly up and doun.
In every bussh or under every tree
There is noon oother incubus but he,
And he no wol doon hem but dishonour.

This is going to sound dirty, but I love the way Middle English feels in my mouth. For example, I really like the feel of "Arthour" and "As thikke as motes in the sonne-beem," among others. As well as this post's subject line. I don't know. I just like the way that it feels, the way my mouth has to work. And I love the resulting sound. This is why Chaucer in English will never ever be as great.

I miss Masculinity in the Middle Ages. And Chaucer. Oh, school.

(Note to self: Be careful with spellcheck when using Middle English.)


Dec. 18th, 2008 12:21 am
annundriel: ([misc] Books)
I was reading Stephen Colbert's I am America (And So Can You!) a couple of weeks ago and ran across this:

Unfortunately, most of today's women resemble bowerbirds that force suitors to build elaborate nests of twigs, leaves, and discarded garbage before choosing a mate. Any male who doesn't meet her standards doesn't get to mate that year; one assumes he just stays in his bower, reads bower manuals, and watches bowerbird porn.

Which just struck as really strange considering my professor in Masculinity in the Middle Ages, who would sometimes bring in things she thought reflected themes we were discussing, once had us watch a clip of David Attenborough talking about bowerbirds. (This one, I think.) Because in their behavoir there's a reversal of how humans expect gender roles to work.

I think we were reading Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde at the time. Or she brought it up in context with the background reading we did on knights and brotherhoods and chivalry.

I miss that class. And now I want to re-read "Parlement of Foules."

Anyway. It was just weird to run into the same thing used for a similar example by Stephen Colbert.
annundriel: (Clementine (es))
I have a job interview today.

Yesterday I received an e-mail from my 19th Century European/French Novel professor asking the class for permission to publish our final essays.

[ profile] trademybike got her birthday present and really seems to love it. This makes me all sorts of happy. :D

Now I get to go pick apples and pears off of the ground. Mmmm, smushy fruit salad.
annundriel: (Jim (office))
How did the LDS people get my e-mail anyway?

And why do I receive e-mails for my grandmother who 1) doesn't have an e-mail address anyway and 2) does not know mine?

These are the things I wonder when I clean out my inbox.

Also, where did my syllabus for Donne and His Critics go? In my pack-rat nature I need it to put with my work from that class. ETA: Found it! Was in my bag with my Chaucer course packet.

Not a question, but I have to say that though I may complain about the many, many plot bunnies, I love it when my friends enable me. :) In other words, probably posting ficlet-thing later.
annundriel: (Woo! (office))
19th Century European/French Novel: A
Donne and His Critics: A-
Chaucer: A-

Cheers, folks!
annundriel: (Weight of the Universe (sga))
Nineteenth-Century French Novel: DONE
Chaucer: DONE
Donne: Not done

Today has, so far, been a crappy day. But it's looking to shape up now that I've turned in my finals for today and (finally) taken a nice, long, hot shower with Philosophy's Vanilla Ice Cream body lotion (yum). I feel deliciously clean and warm now.

And now there may be margaritas in my future. And people I see very little of these days. So those are pluses. Let's hear it for a relaxing afternoon/evening! I'll focus on Donne tomorrow.

But I feel like I need to send special shout outs (woo) to Natasha and Rachel for being so amazingly awesome and supportive and understanding.

Y'know, really? Love to everyone on my flist. I may not comment a lot, but I read everything and think y'all are fantastic. When I need a break from essays, you keep me sane. So, thank you. :)
annundriel: (Jack Hands)
I plan on making two cuts in this post, both to hide movie spoilers. So there. :)

Friday Natasha and I went downtown and had lunch at Mexico. I had their excellent Borderline margarita (half-lime, half-strawberry - yummity yum yum) and the chipotle mango chicken. Gooooood. Also half of Natasha's margarita. Yea margaritas. Then we saw Waitress )

Then Mom came over and on Saturday we went with Kay and Tris to see PotC: At World's End )

Today was the last day of classes. French novel was canceled and we had Donne in a bar. McDowell had a Guinness while we talked poetry. I find this amusing. It was also my last night at work. I'm very sad to be leaving Trish and Brian.

It has occurred to me that with EB spending July on the farm, I can force Doctor Who and BSG on her. Mwuahahaha. Yea.
annundriel: (Take Me the Way I Am (ub))
I just had a meeting about my Chaucer paper where I received my exploratory narrative. Y'know, the one I was worried about and caused a small rant? Apparently it was really good. So I walk back asking myself, seriously, how do I do it? How do I continually pull this stuff off when I feel like it's not going that well at all? I mean, last week it was the same thing with my Flaubert paper.

Although, I guess it's all tied into what both Neesha and Kasey have said about me needing to be a little bit more confident with my writing. Even if I know I'm quite capable.

I just need to stop thinking and worrying about things so much.

And stop trying to use "apparently" in every sentence of this post. Seriously. I had to remove at least two up there.

Meanwhile, there's a test in Chaucer today. And then the graduation dinner for English majors tonight.

Kay thinks it's funny that I can start sentences with, "The other day in Chaucer it was so funny when..."
annundriel: (Freezing That Frame (dd))
This Donne paper is going to kill me. )

Of course, if the Donne paper doesn't do it, Chaucer or Sand will finish me off. With the help of stress from moving out.

Randomly, I watched Music & Lyrics this morning. It was cute.

Last night I watched The Painted Veil and now I can't stop thinking about it.
annundriel: (Death Shall Be No More (fs))
"The Prioress's Prologue & Tale"

Favorite line: "And he yaf up the goost ful softely."
annundriel: (Running Up That Hill (sga))
Donne Blather )

Basically, what does it mean that the revised sequence (of 12) of the "Holy Sonnets" ends with:

Yet such are thy laws, that men argue yet
Whether a man those statues can fulfil.
None doth; but all-healing grace and spirit
Revive and quicken what law and letter kill.
Thy law's abridgement, and thy last command
Is all but love. Oh let that last will stand.

While Donne's original sequence ended with:

And as a robb'd man, which by search doth find
His stol'n stuff sold, must lose or buy'it again,
The son of glory came down and was slain,
Us whom he'd made, and Satan stole, to'unbind.
'Twas much that man was made like God before,
But, that God should be made like man, much more.

I think maybe I should take a break. If I don't, I might start making Donne puns again.

Although, hmm, interesting that the original sequence begins "Thou hast made me" and ends with "'Twas much that man was made like God before, / But, that God should be made like man, much more." Probably nothing there, but it's something to look at.

Oh, School

May. 7th, 2007 06:43 pm
annundriel: (Jeremy (sn))
Today has been a mix of moments of self-satisfaction (and amazement - take that, George Sand!) and moments of not-really hyperventilation (FINALS OMG).

It is good that things are balanced out (leaning toward good). I just would rather not be reminded about the research papers.


May. 2nd, 2007 03:45 pm
annundriel: (Echo (ats))
"One way of tolerating existence is to lose oneself in literature as in a perpetual orgy." - Gustave Flaubert

We're just starting Madame Bovary in 19th Century French Novel. Today was (mostly) devoted to Flaubert background. We're supposed to respond to that quote by Monday.

Today in Donne we read and discussed the Elegy "Sappho to Philaenis," which I'm going to have to write out here because I like it so much. Part of the discussion had to do with the assumption that the poem is about two women and George Klawitter's argument that there's an ambiguity in the text because of the lack of definite pronouns and it could be about two men. Part of his argument being that the titles of Donne's poems aren't actually his titles. Someone else decided to call this "Sappho to Philaenis," so that's completely unhelpful.

Any way you read it, I think it's lovely.

Sappho to Philaenis )

I find the mood icon kind of funny. John has lasers in his eyes!
annundriel: (Aery Thinness (ma))
I borrowed several of Tris's books on cryptozoology. (I think Kasey could probably guess why. Hint: McKay. Boat. Life-jacket.) We got into a really interesting conversation about Big Foot and various other cryptids that freak both of us out.

Finished one paper for tomorrow. Still have one paper to go. And four essays to read. Bah. It's my own fault. (Procrastinator.) But I was determined to finish Indiana before I wrote a paper about it. Usually I would just fake it (which I'm very good at), but I didn't feel strongly enough about anything in the novel or the essays to feel comfortable doing that.

Meanwhile........There is no meanwhile. Just classes. Just a pile of books about John Donne, a stack of essays about French novels (the quotes in French are unhelpful), and a not-so-slowly dropping level of ink in my printer.

I want to write something short and fun and not school related, but I can't come up with anything. I want to watch the new episodes of Doctor Who.

Lately I've been thinking about all of the things I'll be able to read for fun after graduation.
annundriel: (Hace Mucho Tiempo (pl))
The Medieval Poetry Reading was today. I had a lot of fun. Languages included: Old Norse, Old English, Medieval Latin, Medieval Polish, Middle High German, Medieval Gaelic, Medieval Castilian, Middle English, Early Modern Spanish, and Early Modern English. When Dr. Bullon made her opening comments, she said that it always amazed her that the mouth could make so many different sounds and still make sense. (She was a bit more eloquent than that.) And it really was amazing listening to everyone contribute. Quite beautiful.

The highlight for me was probably Dr. Bean singing selections of Shakespeare.

I haven't gone back through and read the English translations that were provided, but I really enjoyed one of the short Medieval Polish readings.

O szanowaniu ksiqg

Który ksiegi otwierasz, nie len; sie ich zawrzec;,
Zawieraja madrzy, niemadrzy nie zawra.
glupcy zawzdy plugawie sie z nimi obchodza
Ten wszak, kto zna litery, dotyka ich jak perel.

On Respecting Books

You, who open these books, don't delay to close them;
Wise people close them, the unwise won't.
Fools always handle them in a foul fashion,
But one who knows letters, touches them as if they were pearls.

My own reading went well. I made them laugh during my introduction, so that was good. :)

Today in 19th Century French Novel, I started writing some of my notes in Middle English.


SG-1 - Line in the Sand )

What's with SciFi calling Sam "Amanda" in the preview for next week's ep? It's weird.
annundriel: (Jim (office))
Yesterday we started with our recitations in Chaucer. Lucky me got to go first. Apparently I "rocked." :D At the break, Dr. Bullon asked me if I was interested in reading at the Medieval Poetry Reading, which is where my last post came from. At first I was all "okay," and then, seriously, five seconds later I was backing out. By the end of class, however, I decided that there was no reason why I shouldn't do it other than a general nervousness in front of people. And if I said no there was the chance I'd regret not taking the opportunity to actually participate in something.

So I'm doing it. And I'm excited, but also a little freaked out. I'm going to meet with Dr. Bullon tomorrow to go over the beginning of "The Wife of Bath's Tale," just so I can make sure I've generally got the pronunciation down.

And, yeah. That's what's going on there.

Other than that, there just is not enough time in the day to do everything I need to do. Luckily, Dr. Weber pushed the paper that was due this coming Monday back to the Monday after that. Phew. There is still, however, this icky Donne biography paper due Friday. I'm currently re-reading the four essays for it. After awhile it starts to run together.

It's kind of funny and surprising that the Chaucer class has turned into my comfort class of the quarter. Although, wow, it's really doing funny things to the way I read modern English.
annundriel: (SG-1)
Am now reading George Sand's Indiana for 19th Century French Novel. So far, through part one, the hero drives me nuts. At least, I assume he's the hero. I will say that I'm interested to see exactly how it all plays out. Something tells me it's not going to end well.

Whenever I see the word "April" now, my mind immediately goes, "Whan that Aprill with his shoures soote."


I find it a little embarrassing that the SciFi channel can't spell Ronon's name correctly.

SG-1 - The Quest, Part 2 )
annundriel: (Quietly Rearranged (mummy))
Finished Corinne tonight so I could write my paper on it.

While I enjoyed the book, I still feel this desire to chuck it across the room for the satisfying thud of it hitting something. Because, omg, did parts of it piss me off. And I'm usually level-headed when it comes to stuff like this. Seriously, professors have commented on it.

Interestingly, though, this skill-building paper has helped me work through some of my issues. I am attempting to read what is a confusing ending from a woman writer considering everything that has come before as a good thing, and not the tragic thing it looks like on the surface. I think I've succeeded, but I guess I'll just have to wait until I get the paper back to find out for sure.

Next book is George Sand's Indiana.

It feels like a Thursday night and not a Tuesday night (well, Wednesday morning). It's because I messed with our usual schedule and went ahead and made pasta for dinner and then didn't go to work.

Donne Humor

Apr. 4th, 2007 05:01 pm
annundriel: (Chloe (sv))
McDowell started class today with this:

"Most people know the legend of William Tell and his unique method of making applesauce, but not many know that he and his family were championship bowlers. Highly skilled, their team was sponsored eagerly by local merchants. To have 'Tell's Terrors' represent your firm was a great honor.

Even now, to be able to claim that the Tells once represented your family business would be of great advertising value. Unfortunately, the old records have been lost, and today we can't be sure for whom the Tells bowl."

Bad joke. But, oh, I can't help but laugh. It does not take a lot to amuse me.

Discussion also strayed to the Bee Gees and dog whistles. Donne got compared to Jon Stewart in his accessibility to the people in his sermons. We also heard a story about this guy who broke up with a girl over the phone by saying, "Listen, it's like reading. I've read that book. Now I'm putting it back on the shelf."


annundriel: (Default)

February 2013



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