I found the reading on Feminism in Tyson eye-opening. It mentioned some things that I had never even heard of before such as the female friendly language and how marriage is a labor contract. I found both of these ideas quite interesting and I really enjoyed reading about them and learning more. Did anyone else learn something new or read further on a subject in the chapter that they find interesting?
Adele has had extreme success with her career, and is becoming known as the voice of this generation. She was an almost instant hit with the release of her debut album 19, which got seven times platinum in the United Kingdom and double platinum here in the United States. Common themes in Adele’s works are sadness, hard times, love, and loss especially the songs that become very famous.
The topic of the song “Hello” is about trying to get in touch with an ex-partner and to apologize for the grievances in the relationship and the way things ended. The implied reader in this work is anyone that has either had their heart broken or that has done so to someone else. Personally though, I feel bad for the person that is trying to apologize to the aggrieved individual because they seem sorry for what they have done and are trying so hard to make amends, but the other person is not being very receptive. The apologizer also says several times that “I must have called a thousand times” and that “at least I can say that I’m trying” which in my opinion gives even more evidence to how sorry they are.
Adele says that the person trying to apologize had hoped that time would make them feel better, but that is not how things have worked. Instead, they are reminiscing on the relationship that ended several years ago and dreaming about what they would be like today as a couple, which shows how little healing the narrator has actually done. This also shows me how upset and apologetic the narrator is about the bad breakup. Comparatively though, the narrator mentions how whenever they call they “never seem to be home” which I think could be a multitude of things. First, this could be the aggrieved person trying to move on with their life. The breakup of the relationship was so painful that they do not even want to speak to the narrator so as not to bring up old feelings. Second, maybe they have already moved on with their life and have a new partner, fiancé, or perhaps are even married. They may not want this new person to know about this serious old relationship because of the questions it could raise.
Adele also shows that the two people are rather different because the apologizer asks “did you ever make it out of that town where nothing ever happened?” I think that this shows that the individual trying to apologize did not like where they were currently living, while the other person did, so perhaps this speaks to the apologizers drive to experience the world. They were not happy with a boring, simple life, but instead needed something more exciting. Also, the narrator says “Hello from the other side” exemplifying that the person thinks of them as living in two different worlds. This could also refer to the ex-couple being in two different stages of their lives that it seems as if they are in two different worlds since they do not even speak anymore.
The first time I heard this song I certainly did not think about it this deeply, but I hope that I have spurred you to think about it too! I would love to hear what other people think about this as well!
Discussion in class today focused in part on New Criticism. Through this post I hope to pose questions that you may not have had before, but also to get your help with some questions that I have about these theories.
Expanding on New Criticism, is there really such a thing as a completely universal theme? Are there really ideas that you and I can relate to but so can a starving child in Vietnam and the CEO of a Fortune 500 company? I would beg to differ. I think that in almost everything we read there are obviously themes, but I do not think think they all carry the same weight and stability. For example, in The Great Gatsby, one of the major themes is society and class which us and the CEO can probably understand, but the Vietnamese child would not be on the same level. This also leads me to my next question: why are we still letting white, probably affluent older men make the decision about what texts are worthy of being in the canon? They do not well represent the population of the people that read or the population of the world. So what allows them to make this important decision about a list that is well-regarded and is supposed to apply to anyone? I think that it is the fault of tradition. This is the ways that things have been done and the way that they shall continue. I hope that we can change this in the future.
My question has to do with the small group work that was done today. My partner and I read a seemingly happy children’s poem about a cow grazing in the field and providing good milk. Upon deeper analysis we questioned why the cow had been called red and white (has anyone ever heard of a red cow?) leading us to think that maybe the cow had been butchered since the second half of the poem is about the cow peacefully grazing, but maybe this is actually alluding to its time in heaven. After we had finished working we realized that our analysis was primarily psychoanalytic, so how might we go about employing New Criticism here?