∙Sophie∙

"kept your face towards the sunlight and the shadow will always fall behind you."-Walt Whitman

Homeland or Death: Options for The Cuban Revolution!


The Cuban Revolution, a situation unimaginable to most, can be summed up in a word: continuity. To simplify the complex revolution motive, imagine mom urging you to attend school. Upset, you run away to granny’s, only to realize she signed you up for summer camp. Dictated by tyrant after tyrant, what would you do? How did the Cubans handle such a scenario? Find out in The Cuban Revolution in Plain English video below!

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Breaking Down Unbroken


 Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand tells the life story of Louie Zamperini, an Olympic runner and military aviator during World War II, and his experience surviving life on a raft and years of horrific abuse as a prisoner of war (POW) in Japan. Themes the novel hints at include that forgiveness often lastingly changes your perception of life, while revenge feels validated solely at that moment. 

The book is a fascinating and influential literary non-fiction-take to a Louie Zamperini obituary that I recommend to all readers. From the iconic quotes of the literature(such as “a lifetime of glory is worth a moment of pain” and “dignity is as essential to human life as water, food, and oxygen”) to the thrilling stylistic writing of Laura Hillenbrand, the read is a reading pleasure to its core. Despite the reading, the novel in itself delivers influential themes. Particularly in non-fiction, readers are heavily encouraged to apply the morals of the book to their life, as they believe that it is a realistic approach to their personal life. 

I prejudiced non-fiction. The sound of statistics, graphs, and diagrams weren’t appealing to me. However, this unit was surprisingly enjoyable to learn and go through. I discovered the joy of non-fiction, the combination of narrative and factual areas of the book made it fun to read. Speaking of the matter, I learned about how narrative and information parts seamlessly blend, correlate, differentiate, and strategies to recognise them. It was interesting to identify how literary non-fiction authors combine informational areas of the book and, in my opinion, the fun narrative sections.

Rap of the Boxer POV Rebellion


Following historical tradition, the winners of wars always tell the tale, consequently, the Boxers resulted in a bad reputation as they were opponents of the Westerners(the winners) – however, I would argue the contrary. From the Boxer’s POV (point of view), they are justified for their behaviors as a reaction to the exploitation of foreigners. China had spent years suffering, keeled under the weight of the Opium War and other foreign influences. This eventually forced China to sign treaties favoring the foreigners – following to not only wealth desperations, but a flood of ethnocentric missionaries attempting to convert the Chinese into Christians. This suffering is the origin of the Boxers. Like other countries throughout history faced with colonization, they engaged in varying forms of resistance and adaptation to colonial rule. The Boxer’s behavior derived from attempts to preserve their traditional values and the accumulation of difficulties from negative foreign influences (wealth, religion, land, etc). On top of that, natural disasters such as floods and drought led to hardships. Naturally, boxers viewed foreigners as the root of their issues, in the case of both cultural and general hardships, rationalizing their motives for the rebellion. Should the boxers have a bad reputation when their intentions were to defend their culture and remove hardships? From the Boxer’s perspective, no. However, that is a valid question

Ahead of time- Hermia

Hermia, one of the lead roles of Shakespeare’s play, A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream, isn’t the classical damsel in distress of her period. As a woman, she defies her society’s hierarchy as a self-asserted and individualistic character. She’s an exception from the crowd of her era, intriguing me to analyze her for this magazine cover task.

Why the picture?
The cover picture possessed an opinionated expression, like Hermia projecting her opinions of marriage. Also, throughout the play, in the context of Greek mythology, Hermia is regarded as fair, beauteous, and love attractive. Merging the two, the appearance of Hermia could be comparable to Aphrodite’s– the goddess of love and beauty.

What are you proud of?
From the color scheme to the choice of font, the overall aesthetic of the cover symbolizes elegance and sophistication. I’m considerably satisfied with the design of the magazine cover.

Me? A Renaissance Humanist?

The overall rating of me being a Renaissance humanist would be 95%. As an atheist, I believe in certain concepts of humanism – valuing evidential teachings and curiosity. Like humanists, I structure theories through an evidential mindset as opposed to unquestionably following the declarations of the church. As no superstition is involved in my identity, my beliefs revolve around science and evidence only. Though comparable to the humanism value of learning through science, I, unlike the Renaissance humanists, rely solely on science instead of attempting to finding a balance between religion and science. I also support elements of Humanism. For example, I value individualism by believing everyone has the power to achieve success, take an interest in humanities, and support that using the past to better society is significant and rational. All in all, I value the key elements of Humanism with only a few modifications. Consequently, I gave myself the rating as a 95% humanist.

The Theme of Thunder

“Each decision you make today has the potential to open the doors to profitable benefits or close the door to great opportunities. Think before you act and make your decisions wisely today.” -DeWayne Owen.

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Ray Bradbury illustrated the above quote through his piece “The Sound of Thunder,” an example of when being inconsiderate of deeds could lead to significant consequences.  In the story lays the existence of time travel — an invention that potentially makes or breaks the pinnacle of human achievements. Eckels, the protagonist, is offered an opportunity of any hunter’s dream– to kill a Tyrannosaurus Rex. The touch of a feather on a puddle, a ripple made in the adventure–a flap of a butterfly, creates a catastrophic tsunami of Eckels’ life. Hence, the awareness of the consequences of actions is crucial for the future.

The ability of awareness in one’s affairs, minor or major, to consider consequences before doing–a virtue unpossessed by most. However, small actions could result in severe outcomes when this skill is disregarded. In the context of “The Sound of Thunder”, before entering the time machine, Travis, the wise and experienced traveler, instructs Eckels to be conscientious concerning the past. He specifies that “a little error [there would multiply in six million years” (Bradbury, 5) and states, “messing around in time can make a big roar or little rustle in history” (Bradbury, 5). Of a broader context, he reveals a theme or moral that could apply to not only the story, but life–actions of all sizes could have vital outcomes. The toss of a cigarette could potentially begin a wildfire, activating the red button could establish a real-life fifth wave. Prior to returning to the future, Travis, in reaction to Eckel stepping on the earth of the past, threatens him with his gun. To which Eckels exclaims, “I’m innocent, I’ve done nothing wrong” (Bradbury, 13). Despite Travis’ agitated reaction of Eckels’ disobedience, Eckels proceeds to believe that he is virtuous, that he “just ran off the path, that’s all, a little mud on [his] shoes” (Bradbury, 13). A simple pause, a thought about the consequences of stepping off the path, would have prevented the tragic results of the literature –the extinction of butterflies, altering history, and the death of Eckels. The disobedience of Eckels, the inattentive move to contact the past world, though unrealistic, demonstrates the butterfly effect: awareness of actions, no matter what size, has affects on the future.

The metal pathway, a symbolic representation of thoughts. The action of withdrawing yourself from the path, stepping into a world without considering consequences, the butterfly effect. Regret is inevitable, the remorseful feeling that you should have studied for an exam or washed your hands before COVID befell upon you. As William Shockley said, “Regret is unnecessary. Think before you act,” together, we must begin thinking before doing, taking impactful steps to make the utopian world a reality.

Ex”ma’am”inating Internal Conflict

The found poem above is taken from page 1-3 of the narrative “Thank You, Ma’am,” by Langston Hughes. The primary conflict of the poem is internal – man vs. self. The internal conflict occurs after Roger, the protagonist, got caught attempting to steal from Mrs. Jones. He contemplates whether to run away or stay with her. In the rising action of the story (when Roger was held onto by Mrs. Jones), Roger stresses that he possessed a strong desire to run, shown in lines, “I just want you to turn me loose”(Hughes, 2), and when Mrs. Jones asked him whether he would run if she released him, he responded with a, “Yes’m”(Hughes, 1). However, as the rising action unfolds, it reveals that Mrs. Jones sees Roger as a misguided youth, expressed by Mrs. Jones’s change in attitude toward Roger. At the beginning of the narrative, she was pressuring him. But she then became compassionate by welcoming him into her house, washing his face, and giving him advice after he explains he has no adults to take care of him.

 

Despite Roger’s desire, when offered the opportunity to run (when Mr. Jones released him and asked for him to go wash his face), he reacted by “looked at the door— looked at the woman — looked at the door” (Hughes,2). Roger’s hesitation indicates that he was conflicted between dashing to the door to fulfill his desire from the beginning or to stay with Mrs. Jones and repay her for her kindness. Consequently, the internal conflict of “Thank you, Ma’am,” occurs when Roger is conflicted about whether to stay and repay Mrs. Jones for the kindness she showed or to run away from her and get away with his robbery.

Essay

Banning single-use plastic is effective in saving the ocean. marine life are suffering from plastic and banning single-use plastic will decrease the rate of marine life consuming substances found in plastic. Countries must begin following the successful footsteps of Kenya and others and begin banning single-use plastic. Though others have claimed that plastic has no alternatives, there is a fine list of materials that state otherwise. Countries must begin following the successful footsteps of Kenya and others and begin banning single-use plastic.

Banning single-use plastic is an effective way marine life is suffering from the poison of plastic. For instance, in 2015 organization Ocean Biologist extracted a single-use plastic straw from a turtle screeching with pain and agony. Examples similar to this reveals the harm of plastic to marine life. According to National Geographic, 42% of the plastic in the ocean is single-use. Demonstrating how the ban would reduce the number of animals consuming the pollutants and toxic substances used to produce plastic. To save marine life, more countries need to begin banning single-use plastic.

It has been proven that banning single-use plastic is effective in saving the ocean as countries such as Kenya who incorporated the ban and has shown great success. “We have saved the environment of 100million plastic bags. (In one year) That’s something worth celebrating,” announced James Wak an environmental activist from Kenya. According to the article Marine, it is estimated that in 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish. However, with more countries following the trend of Kenya. Saving 100million plastic bags per year will increase to billions. Therefore the success in banning single-use plastic from Kenya demonstrates that banning single-use plastic is an effective way to save the ocean.

Despite the success in Kenya, some say that there are no alternatives to plastic. Furthermore, Scroll.in published a video quoting, “We’ve banned carry bags a few months back but there are no alternatives.” Comments on the video have stated otherwise. For example, AthrarvaUlhe described how the ban has impacted her own life, claiming the effectiveness of this ban stating and user ToShar stating, “It’s working in my area at least”. This shows that the majority of people disagree, other than that alternatives to carry bags include paper bags or cotton bags. Both reusable and most importantly biodegradable and digestible. This shows that banning single-use plastic is an effective way to save the ocean.

Banning single-use plastic is an effective way to save the ocean. If more follow the successful footsteps of Kenya and start the ban marine life consuming plastic chemicals and pollutants will decrease. Although some say there are no alternatives to single-use plastic there are many. Therefore banning single-use plastic is an effective way to save the ocean.

Ancient Greece Time Travel

Percy Jackson Response

 

Ever had those days where nothing makes sense. You have something like ADHD, and you just can’t understand why people expect you to be as good as others in school? Or maybe you want to have a more positive relationship to people, but you’ve said things you didn’t mean. If that’s the case, then You and Percy from the book Percy Jackson and the lightning thief has a lot in common. However, Percy doesn’t understand that he can be as good as the others in school, despite he has ADHD. He just learns in a different style. Percy can also improve his relationships by managing his emotions. 

 

 

In the book “Percy Jackson and The Lightning Thief”, Percy’s mindset towards learning is directly linked to him having ADHD. Percy keeps downgrading himself in learning and uses ADHD as an excuse for this. For example,” Mr. Brunner expected me to be as good as everybody else, although I have dyslexia and attention deficit disorder. According to Article “Neurodiversity”, People with ADHD work best in stimulating environments” Percy isn’t limited to learning, he learns in a different style. If Percy’s school offered more learning styles, Percy would be able to learn more efficiently. Through the story, Mr. Brunner-Percy’s Latin teacher demonstrates this method. On page two, Percy explains why Mr. Brunner is the only class that doesn’t” put him to sleep” because he “lets us play games in class”. Playing games can include movement such as the game tag. This is an example of learning in a stimulating environment.  Percy also exceeds in Mr. Brunner class, “I looked at the carving, I felt a flush of relief because I actually recognized it.” Studies shown, people with AHD could be extremely focused when something interests them.  This indicates the results of Mr. Brunner’s way of teaching, Percy’s isn’t limited in learning and he’s more engaged in Brunner’s class. If Percy would see these results on how ADHD is not affecting him as a student, he would do an outstanding performance in class than he is with his attitude now. Therefore, Percy’s viewpoint towards learning is associated with him having ADHD. 

 

Presuming that Percy managed his emotions, many of Percy’s relationships throughout the book would be better. Percy referred to his mother when things were not going well, he would be homesick and miss her. “My mother can make me feel good by just walking into the room.” (page 32-33) Percy is comforted by his mom, shows affection and a positive relationship. However, on page 39 Percy blurts out, “because you don’t want me around?”, I regretted the words as soon as they were out. Since Percy has a positive relationship towards his mom, and he regretted the words as soon as they were out. Percy didn’t mean to say those words. If Percy thought about the outcome of his actions, he probably wouldn’t have said them to his mom. According to the article, Managing Emotions. Emotional decisions are frequently made in “the heat of moment”. When Percy offended his mom, his decisions were in the “heat of moment” the state where his emotions blurted out the phrases he says to his mother. Experts in the article Managing emotions recommended ways to help avoid these situations: 

  • Stopping before you decide 
  • Think about how you will feel as a result of each possible actions

 

Other than managing your emotions to improve positive relationships, doing so could also develop better relationships with people who you don’t work well with. In school, Percy not only faces issues with his learning perspective but also has a poor relationship with a girl, Nancy Bobofit.  During the story, Percy reveals on page 17, “I got in more fights with Nancy Bobofit and her friends. I was sent out of the hallway in almost every class.” According to all the fights, Percy has shown that Percy reacts to Nancy’s behavior aggressively. Causing him to be the person who got in trouble. Using the suggestions that Managing Emotions expert gave, Percy might have had a better relationship with Nancy. If Percy put in the consideration to think about how he would feel as a result of each possible action of him. Maybe he would approach Nancy’s behavior in a different way. Such as on page 5, Percy screamed to Nancy, “will you shut up?!”. If Percy approached this in a way such as, “Nancy I’m sorry but I can’t hear anything Mr. Brunner is saying. Will you please keep the volume down a bit?” The teacher wouldn’t blame Percy, Nancy wouldn’t have a reason to be mad at Percy. On that account, Percy managing his emotions would lead him to develop a better relationship with others. 

 

Percy’s mindset towards learning is directly linked to him having ADHD. Percy isn’t limited to learning; he learns in a different style which can make his. Other than managing your emotions to improve positive relationships, doing so could also develop better relationships with people who you don’t work well with.  Percy isn’t limited to learning; he learns in a different style. 

 

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