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On Moore & Gibbons’ Watchmen
By Naomi Girard
Throughout the graphic novel, several women play influential roles in Rorschach’s life, each pushing him closer towards his crime fighter identity. By examining the ways that all these women drive Rorschach towards violence and his desire to claim a new identity, it becomes clear that his obsession with fighting crime is his way of grieving over and coming to terms with the injustice he experienced as a child.
On Sebald’s Austerlitz
By Helen Zhou
“Nach Auschwitz ein Gedicht zu schreiben, ist barbarisch,” wrote Theodor Adorno. “To write poetry after Auschwitz is barbarism.” With all due respect to Sebald, I will argue that in Austerlitz, he both seemingly complies with Adorno whilst contradicting his arguments, one, by imitating the pillaging of free expression experienced by Jews during the Holocaust, and two, by attempting to represent the unrepresentable.
On Mulvey and on Hitchcock’s Vertigo
By Alexis Gervacio
Bespectacled, bold, and slightly boyish, Midge Wood does not easily fit into Mulvey’s analysis – she does not possess the “strong visual and erotic impact” characteristic of female characters (11). As such, this investigation will attempt to not only explain how Midge confounds the norm, but also why she is so different from the typical damsel-in-distress.
On Faulkner and Sappho
By Graysen Currie
By placing As I Lay Dying beside Anne Carson’s translated work of Sappho, If Not, Winter, readers may come to find that Addie may not be truly dead, as vital pieces of her still remain. Many of Sappho’s fragments may even be read from the voice of Addie herself, even before her death. By taking a closer look particularly at Addie’s influence over her sons, the theme of travel, and at Addie’s desire for revenge against Anse, we may see that Addie’s influence is still potent, up until her body is put to rest in Jefferson’s soil.
On Auster’s City of Glass
By Jake Clark
Paul Auster’s City of Glass is a text that confronts a wide array of themes, two of the most prominent being language and identity. Language is presented as the conveyor of meaning, connected to the Biblical myth of Babel, whereas meaning is an evasive concept that is tied to the genesis of language, but ultimately distanced from it by the same connection. The three implications of ‘private eye’ form the facets of Quinn’s identity, with the overpowering search for meaning uniting and eventually deconstructing his investigative persona and his core identity.
On Laura Mulvey and Spike Jonze’s film Her
By Grace Chang
Mulvey’s article, while intended to be a response to the films of Hollywood’s Classic Age of cinema (ca. 1930-1960), remains relevant. Hollywood remains a male dominated, dominatingly male, and heteronormative industry. However, a recent film, Spike Jonze’s Her, challenges Mulvey’s idea of physical pleasure and the gaze, seeking to break this erotic coding through the removal of the physical female form.
On Mulvey and Hitchcock
By Ali Byers
In her argument Mulvey makes no mention of Midge, the film’s only other female character. Midge’s character complicates the idea that this is a purely symbolic film, and even attempts to subvert the codes that make up the symbolic. Both the way that Midge is captured by the camera, as well as how she is implemented in the plotline, complicate the simple dichotomies between man/woman, active/passive, and holder/object of the gaze that supports Mulvey’s argument.
On Freud’s Dora and Chuang Tzu’s Zuangzhi
By John Wragg
When examining Freud’s usage of the dream world in his diagnoses, it is fascinating to see the similarities in which he approaches dreams and Chuang Tzu utilizes dreams, as Chuang Tzu is quite famous for his passage in the Zhuangzi, the butterfly dream. Despite a couple of millennia, and drastically different cultures separating the two men, their approach and philosophy regarding dreams as a tool to connect the dream and real world, a tool to discover of oneself, and as a tool to heal is extremely surprising in their similarity.
On Moore & Gibbons, Watchmen
By Anne Wang
Eyes are everywhere in the comic series Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons. From the eyes of every character to the pupil-like circles of clocks and “fallout shelter” signs, figures of vision can be found throughout. The very cover of the publication depicts a minimalist eye of the iconic happy face, expressionless and abstract, anonymous as a civilian, watched by the outside world and watching it back. The series plays on the reversible identities of the watched and the watchers.
On Du Bois’ The Souls of Black Folk
by Sierra Robbins
Du Bois’ classic text The Souls of Black Folk does not at first read as a cohesive argument. Rather, each chapter offers a different style, a different purpose, and this makes for a complex and at times disjointed reading experience. The unifying factor in the text is the metaphor of the “Veil” – a metaphor which itself varies according to the scope of each chapter.