Written By Frances Guzman
American Literature is defined as literature that is written in the United States of America. However, American Literature also has other defining characteristics with common themes and plot points found within most pieces. Alongside these characteristics, the piece must also be thought-provoking as well as teach something. American literature should also include bits and pieces of the author’s own experiences within their pieces as well. The themes used may vary but they ultimately boil down to include themes of discrimination, mainly gender discrimination, and its association to mental illnesses, lies and deceit, and the American Dream. Gender discrimination and the connection it has with mental illnesses is a prominent theme in A Streetcar Named Desire, while lies and deceit is an important theme in Good Country People and “The Swimmer". Lastly, the well-known theme of the American Dream is present in “The Swimmer” and Death of a Salesman.
Several students in PCC's Creative Writing classes have been using master poets to experiment with their own work. Last week we read Baylie Raddon's Ginsberg experiment. This week's experiment is a collaborative effort from Frances Guzman, Salena Lo, and Ismael Castro. Enjoy!
Written By: Baylie Raddon
In a post-September 11th world, situations are often met with skepticism, criticism, and even paranoia. Being that the last twenty years in the United States have been made up of the citizens grappling with and healing from the effects of 9/11, the creatives of the country have morphed the language of literature into something beyond what it was previously. The definition of literature has expanded with the rise of technology, and social media has given everyday people an opportunity to participate like never before. Building off of the artists before them, modern-day American creatives tend to stick to the classic the American literature theme of honoring one’s individuality, except almost to an extreme. Modern American literature sees its biggest shift, however, in the increase of irony, sarcasm, and comedy as a tool to address larger issues in a comedic manner, especially on the internet. Internet culture is growing rapidly, with the different platforms feeding off of each other and interacting as if they had a mind of their own. YouTube is one of the platforms that supplies many of the prominent internet ideas, ideas that are spread by “influencers” like Natalie Wynn who uses colorful lighting, outrageous costumes, and quick-witted humor to argue against the Alt-Right and educate the rest of the people on the internet. Her YouTube channel, ContraPoints, encapsulates the new definition of modern day American literature through expressing her unique, radical political views and debating moral and ethical dilemmas that have no clear conclusion, all the while sharing her personal struggles as a transgender woman.
Fooling around with Ginsberg
Several students in PCC's Creative Writing classes have been using master poets to experiment with their own work. Here is Baylie Raddon's Ginsberg experiment. Enjoy!
Written By: Evan Krikorian and Noah Kim
Evan Krikorian and Noah Kim conducted an interview with one of their classmates, Woody Brown. Woody has non-verbal autism and wrote an exceptional paper, “Emerson and Me,” containing his response to Emerson’s statement; “We lie in the lap of immense intelligence, / which makes us organs of its activity / and receivers of its truth.” Undoubtedly, Emerson held unique ensembles of intelligence in the highest of regards and Woody has learned to maneuver non-verbal autism and present his intelligence in the most extraordinary of ways. Woody is able to carry on multiple tracks of thought simultaneously (no matter how phenomenal you believe to be able to multitask he will have you outdone); and this allows for the creation of works that are truly original.
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