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English 2202 British Lit: Week 15 Lecture Notes

by: Amanda White

English 2202 British Lit: Week 15 Lecture Notes 2202

Marketplace > Ohio State University > Foreign Language > 2202 > English 2202 British Lit Week 15 Lecture Notes
Amanda White
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About this Document

These notes cover material from lecture on Tuesday 4/19 and Thursday 4/21. All notes are concerning "Never Let Me Go"
British Literature 1800-Present
Dr. Jill Galvan
Class Notes
british, Literature
25 ?




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This 10 page Class Notes was uploaded by Amanda White on Thursday April 21, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 2202 at Ohio State University taught by Dr. Jill Galvan in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 135 views. For similar materials see British Literature 1800-Present in Foreign Language at Ohio State University.


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Date Created: 04/21/16
ENGLISH 2202 LECTURE NOTES WEEK 15 TUESDAY 4/19 & THURSDAY 4/21 TUESDAY 4/19 VOCABULARY WORDS 1. EUPHEMISM *final: same format as midterm—see guidelines on Carmen Not comprehensive, only material from after midterm  There will be some texts not included---will find out later Never Let Me Go  Underlying principle of INSULARITY o Cut off status, island-like location of Kathy and her peers/clones o Self-enclosed world  Exchanges: o Kathy recalls they exchanged child-like artwork—why? o Emotional value of what they exchange, allow them to place most value in both social and emotional and literal sense in each other o Market system that is self-enclosed, emotional investments with each other o Objects have no greater value in real world  Rumor o Information that is not always accurate, circulates within a group o Often refer to many different rumors o Rely on meager form of information, uninformed, disconnected from larger world---only have partial knowledge  Dystopia o Imaginary, fictional, bad place that would really be awful to live in for some prominent social, political, technological reasons o Opposite is “utopia”-fictional perfect place, less interesting  Novel is “Bildungsroman” o Social, intellectual maturity of protagonist  Genre o Bildungsroman and a dystopia (science fiction-like) o Many genres mixed  Speech that Ruth makes when everyone goes to Norfolk o Go to Norfolk to see if they had seen Ruth’s possible o Pg. 162: follow woman into a gallery, look at woman, figure it is not really her possible o Art Gallery!—rumor of Madame taking the art for her “gallery” o Differences between the galleries? o Follow the woman: everyone tries to think this is no big deal, but Ruth is really upset---gives a speech about person definitely not her possible due to them not using people like this as models (pg. 166) o Don’t use models who are higher class, but use models from “trash”, “convicts” ---Ruth knows they never make clones from people like this o Tone changes here: angry, calls out dystopia, takes narrative out of bildungsroman o Glimpse of a much more complicated social world o Assume that Ruth is correct:  She and other clones are modeled off of “trash”  Placidity and calmness to narration hides the dystopian elements (being forced to give their organs…don’t ever get a choice, they are raised from birth to have this role. Path to early death)  Suggest that they are not the only ones neglected or exploited in the society they live in…why are they the ones who’s genes are taken to create clones?  Higher social status=don’t want to have copies of themselves running around?  Physically forced to be cloned, or maybe there is an incentive for the down and out to be cloned??  In U.S.: can’t buy or sell organs from live donors  Very risky surgery  Shouldn’t be a payment to put self at risk  Should enter into operation fully informed and without incentive  Dystopia: less concerned with others lives, neglected, exploited—desperation?  Society sees people who are cloned as disposable o “Trash/Rubbish” motif—symbol of Kathy and peers!  used in Ruth’s speech  sales of used things for collections  cast-off items  treated as material that don’t really care about then get rid of them (like bodies of clones)  Coincidence: o Book released in 2005 o Movie same year “The Island”—same plot! (differences in genre) o Thriller (movie) vs. Non-thriller (book)  Genre: combination of dystopia, Bildungsroman and some gothic (science fiction) ---distorted  Bildungsroman o Cottages (Part 2)  Tale of Kathy’s growth is not familiar, but distorted---important concept!  Similar to college  Transitional period, right of passage between Hailsham and Donation/real-world adult world  Kids hang out, goof off, discuss poetry/philosophy/art  Also have some independence---no guardians, can do what they want (sex, porn magazines, etc.)  Unlike right of passage:  Distorted path to maturity  Kathy and peers cannot live “normal” lives  College: new liberty, beginning adulthood, independence, choice, experimentation, decide on what you will do in life  Cottages: their life is laid out for them, just a stepping stone to a predetermined path of becoming carers then ultimately donors  Cannot deviate from path (school-cottages-carer- donor)  Bildungsroman: individual meets with society  Novel: forced into a role that is chosen  Hints at clone’s social structure/world  Pg. 116: “Cottages were remains of farms”  Live in converted barns, outhouses, stables--- suggests how clones are viewed---like animals raised for a particular, material function for pleasure or satisfaction/need of others—lives are only valued for their organs (like livestock)—less than human status  Kids are always cold o Not given a lot of physical comfort o No one cares about their well being, just their organs o Structure of Narrative & Language  Kathy’s point of view: why is she telling the story?  Idea of clone organ donors: we don’t find this out until pg. 81 and later  Very basic info is left out at the beginning  How would story be different if we knew they were clones and donors from the start? (EXPOSITION ISSUE-find out crucial info)  Makes us feel the characters are humans and feel for them  Mirrors clones own experience---they don’t know their life right away, until pg. 81 and Miss Lucy says they are “told but not told”  Told: but don’t understand, told just enough to have basic understanding and will be used to it when they do understand it—gradual knowledge  Creates same experience for readers as the characters have---possibility of empathy/sympathy/pathos right from the start  If told they were clones at first: very off- putting, can’t relate to characters—gives us a chance to have compassion for characters and not see them as different right away— grow emotionally close to them  Begin to question what humanity means o Language of text  Many people/readers frustrated that characters don’t try to escape their fate…why?  Don’t have the capability or desire to look beyond their world—view has been extremely conditioned and don’t even see rebellion as an idea  “imprisoning the mind”/colonizing the mind--- through language  choices are limited not only by their life laid out, but what they can even imagine internally  don’t see the horror of their fate---casual acceptance  language determines reality  indoctrination of what is possible for Kathy/peers  Vocabulary in the novel  Donor-give up organs (corresponds to our own language). Connotation of voluntariness. Describes what they are forced to do is voluntary  Carer- different from a nurse? Why need a carer? What is a carer?  Hailsham-Hail: call someone, Sham: fake (fake calling) Possible- people who may be the kid’s models, don’t know for sure, possibility of choice that clones are denied  Complete: die, connotation of achievement and positivity in our language, masks horror of what exactly is happening  Guardian: parent-like teachers, clones are orphans (irony). Guard and teach students o Donor/complete: EUPHEMISMS  Word or phrase used to say something unpleasant, “sugar coating”  Ex: “died” vs. “passed away”, “fired” vs. “let go” THURSDAY APRIL 21 NEVER LET ME GO (CONT’D) VOCABULARY WORDS: N/A  Implications of motifs of imprisonment o Imprisoning the mind-no will of the clones to rebel o Why don’t they rebel? They have no inner desire or choice because they have been taught their life path from the beginning and its natural to them o Education determines their place in the world o Connotation of voluntariness—obscures the fact that they have no choice o “complete”-connotation of accomplishment when it really means death  Kathy as a Narrator o Genre: Buldungsroman-ish (no choice)  Science fiction-ish (no adventure/thriller)  A Memoir/autobiography o How is story told as autobio? How does point of view determine how we see her world, and what are her reasons for writing, who is addressee?? o Point of View  What is the filter?  Not until part 3 that we get to Kathy’s adult life---her as a carer  Most of narrative told as flashbacks---why?  Kathy dwells on past because there is not much of a future (or present) that is happy---happiness is in past  Temporally: narrative focused on past hints at her emotional state—hints at Kathy’s consciousness  Delayed exposition of premise by Ishiguro: clones, organ donors---does this to humanize the characters up front: “UNCANNY VALLEY”  Reaction to things that seem human, but makes us uneasy  Builds compassion for characters, relate to them o Why does Kathy delay telling the reader the premise:  Not very conscious that it is a big deal  Or maybe she is, but doesn’t want to think about it  Non-rebellion: due to point of view of Kathy  Been a carer for 12 years: not a coincidence  Protects tommy, doesn’t let herself get too mad a Ruth, etc.  Compassion that Kathy has, but also complacent/passive side too  Reason she is a carer?  Doesn’t push back, so she is kept in her position for a long time  Tone of narration: acceptance, placidity, rule-follower---not all clones are like this (i.e. Ruth saying we are modeled on trash, people don’t care about them)  Ruth’s anger contrasts Kathy’s complacency o What if Ruth told story? Or Tommy?  Rebellious, tantrums, how would it be different? o Interesting scenes:  Visit a beached boat (pg. 216)  Rumor of the boat  Exciting to clones: minimal nature of life, ordinary things are exciting to them  Suggest limitations of the world the live in— ignorance of what to value  Boat: stuck on beach, left to rot: motif of trash again  A symbol of the clones  (209: Kathy sees Laura in car, staring vacantly, deflated)  Ruth is not doing well (hard to breathe because of donations)  Tommy limping  Barbed wire fence: Ruth scared, pathetic-doesn’t know what to do  Motif of fences: electrical, figurative woods around hailsham, wire around boat: constant theme of imprisonment  Pg. 224  Marshland, ghostly dead trunks, grim place  Ruth thinks its beautiful…? (finds trash beautiful)  Talk of Rumors  Pg. 225: Chrissy “completed” during second donation  Ruth thinks carers know most clones die early, but don’t say it  Kathy says there is no conspiracy, but Ruth is not convinced  Kathy keeps supporting the system placidly  Tommy is worried like Ruth, Kathy underplaying what happens?  Ruth calls out Kathy and asks how does she know, she’s a carer and has not done any donations  Kathy: accepting, Ruth/tommy: can’t accept fully  Final scene: 286  Talks about process of memories  Kathy’s memories don’t fade, she loses her friends, but not memory of them---pathetic, its all she has anymore  Lost Hailsham too, but lives in her memory  Maybe she is looking for Hailsham—doesn’t want to acknowledge that she does want the past back  287: indulgence o drove to Norfolk after Tommy completed o just felt like looking at nothing? o What is she NOT saying:  Norfolk: the lost and found, looking for Tommy  Grieving: what you do when you are depressed  Reader must infer this, she doesn’t say outright  Fence around the field with barbed wire o Rubbish, debris stuck in it o Symbolically the clones: trash washed up against the fence o Memory of Tommy is her focus o Imagines seeing tommy across the field, but didn’t let the fantasy go too far o Lets herself go emotionally in the fantasy, then goes to “where she is supposed to be”— doesn’t deter her from doing her job o Unreliable Narrator?  What are the limits of her reliability?  Final revelation with Madame and Miss Emily o Get answers, but still don’t (told and not told) o 4 genre: Gothic  Madame keeps talking to someone in the dark  Miss Emily emerges: sinister, darkness  Pg. 253-255  Kathy is a little scared o Why gothic?  Hidden pasts and secrets  Sinister feeling  Unknown, certainty  Villains exist in the world, don’t always know them  Imprisonment/claustrophobia/entrapment—doesn’t have to be literal!  Emotionally stifled  Pg. 263 o Morningdale scandal o Genetic engineering, trying to build people—feel uncomfortable with clone program o Scientist messing with life, going to remote island---Allusion to FRANKENSTEIN!! o Overt gothic, underscores the real ties between Frankenstein— explore limits of science and technology (should we do something just because we can) o Ethics, humanity, morals, all called into question


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