Word versions are revised, more polished.
- MY BOOK: Draining the Amazon's Swamp: All we are prepared to do when we read, write, watch, make -- live -- our fictions (2002 -2006) (Word/pdf)
- Bruno Amounts to a Rather Large Penis in the Face (August 2009) (Word)
- Be Well Leery of the Ring (July 2009) (Word)
Argues that Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings draws us into unforgivable unfaithfulness. Involves a fairer tribute to Merry and Pippen than Jackson cares to offer.
- Come into My Space Dungeon and Let Me Poke You with a Pogo-Stick: Review of Abram's Star Trek (May 2009) (Word)
Actually an essay in two parts, with part two titled, "Spock's Humanization Project."
- Help Wanted: Review of Wendy and Lucy (May 2009) (Word)
Possibly part of an unfinished review series--I'm having difficulty finishing these days. Still, first paper published outside of university, and hurray for me!
On Douglas Coupland's Generation X. Wrote this one in part to impress a girl (might it not also impress you?). Explores why Generation X is about narrating a world so it seems stable, dependable.
- How Insensitive! (July 2006) (Word)
Historiographical assessment of the eighteenth-century reader and writer of anti-slavery literature.
One of those papers I wrote for a prof. who made me uncomfortable, on an author I have little respect for. Wondering if all this shows in the work. In any case, a struggle to put together, but still pretty a(nd)cute.
- Moderns and Their Mothers' Reach (May 2006) (Word)
Full title: Moderns and Their Mothers' Reach: Returning to the Empowered Mother in Tennessee Williams' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman. Barely handed this one in time, but I've since re-edited it, and now like it.
On Andrea Barrett's Servants of the Map. One of my favourites from the 2006 batch. Details how Max Vigne--and many of us--loosen our attachments to those we've depended on, without guilt.
Second paper I've written on Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man. About how Ralph Ellison makes use of the moderns' preferred ways of imagining the city to avenge himself in his novelistic universe upon his own mother. Write about this sort of thing a lot, but there's a lot of this sort of thing going on. (Really, there is.)
Sinclair Ross paper. Various different computers kept dying while trying to write this. Sister Shannon came to the rescue. One of two papers over twenty pages I wrote that year that more-or-less worked from beginning to end.
On the American poet Stanley Kunitz. The other over twenty page paper I wrote in grad school which worked from beginning to end. The beginning is actually derivative of another paper of mine, "Marcher's Merger" (grad school's demand for such lengthy papers works against fresh writing, me thinks), but the rest was a voyage of discovery. Prof for some reason thought that you can't use a poet's poems to diagnose the poet. Couldn't or shouldn't, professor?
- A Good Place for a Pump and a Dump (Dec. 2005) (Word)
Full title: "A Good Place for a Pump and a Dump: Attending to Basic Needs in Bertram Brooker's Think of the Earth." A Cdn writer no one has ever heard of. Can't find paper copy right now, so no pdf file (but prof thought it not as "crisp" as previous work--i.e., "Critical Introduction" [below]).
The assignment was to write your own New Canadian Library (or some such) intro to this "classic" work of Canadian literature. Prof liked it, but thought it too sarcastic for an intro.
A look at the work of a few Victorian poets. Some good insights, but more inspired work was done in the other paper I wrote for this class (i.e., "Maintaining the Peace"). Was very comfortable with the prof. of this course. Always shows in the paper itself.
On Alfred Tennyson's "Lady of Shalott." As lovely Kate has told me, I often provide unexpected but dead-on readings of texts. This short essay is an example of such.
Full title: Useful Object: Man as the Means Towards Salvation in Martin McDonagh's Beauty Queen of Leenane.
First paper I wrote on Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man. About how the novel really documents just how damned visible the ostensibly invisible man really is.
Wrote this one for Eric Miller--one of the most playful professors/people I've ever been around. As Eric likes to say, this one is characteristic of me: I'm all about giving validation to ostensible villains. I do this for they often deserve no less: they're often those who help the "hero" grow, that is, to be a real hero. They are often those who help the "hero" grow past the real villains, who cannot be named. Deals with both Frances Burney's Evelina and Goethe's Young Werther.
- Short Essay on Caleb Williams (March 2005) (Scanned)
Two page assignment on the evil eye in Caleb Williams.
- Another Short Essay on Caleb Williams (March 2005) (Scanned)
Two page assignment exploring why Caleb Williams is really quite like Tyrrel.
- Short Essay on Les Liasons Dangereuses (March 2005) (Scanned)
Two page assignment on, "where are you, the reader, when Cecile is fucked from behind?"
- Another Short Essay on Les Liasons Dangereuses (Feb. 2005) (Scanned)
Oops!--this is actually where I tackle, "where are you, the reader, when Cecile is fucked from behind?" Sorry about that.
- Short Essay on Francis Burney's Evelina (Feb. 2005) (Scanned)
Two page assignment addressing why readers likely enjoy "viewing" Madame Duval's fall.
- Another Short Essay on Francis Burney's Evelina (Feb. 2005) (Scanned)
Two page assignment exploring why Evelina is no "Miss Manners."
- Short Essay on Sorrows of Young Werther (Jan. 2005) (Scanned)
On Cormac McCarthy's Blood Meridian. Explores how Cormac McCarthy lures the reader into enjoying the riotous slaughter.
Explores why "Crusoe and Gulliver were probably pleased that they found themselves parted from those whose company and/or advice they purportedly cherished." Deals with Daniel Dafoe's Robinson Crusoe and Jonathon Swift's Gulliver's Travels. (Eric says, "Excellent paper--original in every aspect." But of course, is my reply.)
Looks at Tarantino's Pulp Fiction as if it were a young suburbanite man's daydream, a daydream in which he can imagine himself in the company of his heroes, and in which he can configure means by which he could imagine garnering their respect. Huge favorite.
- Film Journal (August 2004) (Word)
About how children (or childish figures) gain the respect of discerning adults. Deals with Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island and E.B. White's Charlotte's Web. I like this one. Makes me warm inside. (Spent time deciding between "countyside" and "stateside." Went with county.)
- Not Meat: the Maturation of a Little Girl (March 2004) (Scanned)
On Angela Carter's "The Company of Wolves."
On John Milton's Paradise Lost. Really explores why Adam is something of a devil himself. Had a tough time preparing my Catholic teacher to see that there really was something to what I was saying here. She saw presumption as evil, which lead me to be a bit careful in her class.
- Reading Journal (Dec. 2003) (Scanned)
Assignment where I did a number of short reviews of various examples of children's lit.
- Ready for Read-Alouds (Nov. 2003) (Scanned)
Full title: Ready for Read Alouds: An exploration of the particular advantages of, and specific concerns surrounding, read-alouds in the classroom.
Doubting the orator's power in A.M. Klein's "Political Meeting." One of a few short papers I did for more contemporary courses (this one's for a Cdn Modernism Poetry Class), that really convinced me that a) I could handle the poems, that my interpretations of them would be interesting to other poets; and b) that analyzing contemporary poetry is where it's at: much more is to be gained by it than by looking earlier.
Full title: Freeing Al Purdy: From Nationalist Cell to Post-Modern Freedom.
About how John Keats tells his readers of a poet's attempt to "ravish" an urn--that is, how he tries to demonstrate the superior status of the spoken word to a beautiful but static object of art.
Essentially--without exactly saying it--tries again to get at why men turn to narrative to try and deal with their experiences with bullying women. Explores the narrator in Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness.
On Henry James' "The Beast in the Jungle."
First couple of lines: At the end of Henry James' "The Beast in the Jungle," John Marcher decides that he has done nothing with his life--but the truth is he had once accomplished something noteworthy with his life, namely, he acquired an autonomous identity for himself, only this acquisition did not come cheap. The price Marcher pays for individuating is his suspicion, his fear, that he is fated for an encounter with a Beast quite capable of destroying him.
Parental sadism in Alice Munro's Lives of Girls and Women, Andrea Ashworth's Once In a House of Fire, and Jean Cocteau's Les Enfants Terribles.
- Public Performance and Gender in [...] (March 2003) (Word) (Scanned)
Full title: Public Performance and Gender in Gerard Manley Hopkins' "The Wreck of the Deutschland" and in The Times' Reporting of the Deutschland Disaster.
- Perpetuation and Exclusion (Dec. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Perpetuation and Exclusion in the Norton Anthology of Literary Criticism. Not a single thing I'd recommend reading in this anthology, by the way. Literature studies will change dramatically in the future. So safe and cerebral.
- Excites and Inhibitions (Dec. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Excites and Inhibitions: The Poetry of Philip Larkin and Ted Hughes.
- Changing Subjects (Oct. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Changing Subjects in Roland Barthes "Death of an Author" and Jacques Derrida's "Structure, Sign, and Play."
- Separating From Symbiosis (Oct. 2002) (Scanned)
- Irreconcilable Differences? (Sept. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Irreconcilable Differences?: Literary criticism's turn (in)to science.
- In the Presence of an Image (Sept. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: In the Presence of an Image: Ezra Pound's explanation of what an image is.
- Used Toys (Aug. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Used Toys: Ordinary Readers Encounter Postmodernism.
Full title: Poet as Physician: Healing from a Wound and a Word in Daphne Marlatt's "Healing."
- Language and the Poet (Aug. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Language and the Poet in Michael Ondaatje's "Early Morning, Kingston to Gananoque."
- Introductions and Initiations (Aug. 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Introductions and Initiations: Our Experience with the Master in Phyllis Webb's "To Friends Who Have Also Considered Suicide."
Full title: Haunting Raveloe: How George Eliot, in Silas Marner, Exorcizes her Past. Really an example of how a late Victorian writer . . . no, scratch that--how a person who is struggling to be free manages her desire to hate those she feels compelled to revere.
- Short Essay on George Eliot's . . . (June 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Short Essay on George Eliot's Narrative Comments in Silas Marner.
- Short Exploration of William Wilkie Collins' . . . (June 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Short Exploration of William Wilkie Collins' The Woman in White.
- Short Exploration of Charles Dickens' Motives . . . (June 2002) (Scanned)
Full title: Short Exploration of Charles Dickens' Motives in Writing Hard Times.
- A Plea for Facts in Charles Dickens' Fiction (June 2002) (Scanned)
Explores why Dickens admires facts as much as his villains are wont to.
- Short Exploration of Tenant of Wildfell Hall (May 2002) (Scanned)
Explores Anne Bronte's Tenant of Wildfell Hall.
Explores Thomas More's Utopia as a poetic work.
On William Shakespeare's Sonnet #94.
One of my favourite papers. On Louise May Alcott's Little Women. Full title is: Jo's March: Becoming Mother Bhaer. Argument: Little Women can be seen as revisiting the long gestational period with the mother in the home, and as recapitulating a strategy that enables a "little woman"--Jo Marsh--to individuate and become an adult. As females, in particular, begin life with an initial estimation of the mother as someone similar to them, Jo individuates from her mother by successive internalizations of alien male "objects," which culminate with her imagining herself as distinct and, therefore, separate from her mother.
Full title: Draining the Amazon's Swamp: Civilizing Our Past in Elizabeth Gaskell's "Our Society of Cranford." One of my more relaxed, innovative, and fun papers, me thinks.
- Movie Analysis: Night of the Hunter (Dec. 2001) (Word)
Atwood called it the scariest movie of all time. I tackle a movie sequence midst it's most terrifying part. Not yet revised, so it'll be rough.
The longest paper I've ever written. Deals with Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (for the most part). There are a lot of good ideas in here. And now revised, so hopefully once again near the head of the class.
Full title: Our Search for a Way of Being in Ridley Scott's Blade Runner. Explores a one minute clip from Ridley Scott's Blade Runner. How a soulful, searching disembodied eye encounters the city-world.
Full title: Having your Beef-cake, and Leaving him too: Aphra Behn's "romance" with a prince, in Aphra Behn's Oroonoko. Explores how Behn wrote Oroonoko in order to more substantively experience sexual satiation. Edited to read better. Another early favourite.
- Short Response to William Blake (Oct. 2001) (Scanned)
- Short Response to Aphra Behn's Oroonoko (Sept. 2001) (Scanned)
- Another Short Response to Aphra Behn's Oroonoko (Sept. 2001) (Scanned)
- Short Response to Aphra Behn and John Wilmot (Sept. 2001) (Scanned)
- Short Response to Coleridge's "Christabel" (Sept. 2001) (Scanned)
Explores Thomas Kuhn's idea of the "paradigm shift" in science. Suggests why Kuhn himself should expect to become outdated.
Argument in favor of looking at people (in this case, specifically the British) as evolving, becoming more psychologically healthy, over time. British historiography. Strong paper.
- Report on Readings (Feb. 2001) (Scanned)
On British history.
- John Dewey: An Anti-Darwinian, Inspite of Himself (Aug. 2000) (Scanned)
- Lloyd DeMause: A Giant Amongst Dwarves (April 2000) (Scanned)
Paper written in a hurry, unfortunately. The good stuff was in my presentation on the journal of psychohistory. Had little left over to write this bit.
- Humanists and Gentlemen (March 2000) (Scanned)
- Interview With Journal of Psychohistory (Feb. 2000) (Scanned)
- To Psychohistory and Beyond (Dec. 1999) (Scanned)
Looks at particularities of the journal of psychohistory, I believe.
- Blind Justices Vs. Missionaries in Rowboats (Nov. 1999) (Scanned)
Anyone new to anthropology may enjoy this. Best paper I wrote for this class. Explores how anthropologists tend to see such very different things when they're looking at the same things. Ethnographic studies of New Guinea. Not-revised.
- Unreformed Electoral System (April 1999) (Scanned)
- Willy Loman's Potency (Aug. 1998) (Scanned)
First paper written on Death of a Salesman (second written in 2005). This one draws attention to the character's heroic aspects. I believe as I age I become more acute: second paper gets at something even more vital than this one does. Just couldn't see it yet.
- Freud and the Englishman's Boy (June 1998) (Scanned)
Wrote this one for a very smart and lovely literary critic/writer, who told me such as debatables as it's "best not to quote from encyclopedias." On Guy Vanderhaegh's Englishman's Boy. She also tried me to write "as such," rather than "like."
- Tragic Fates of Almeda and Jane (April 1998) (Scanned)
Full title: Tragic Fates of Almeda and Jane in Alice Munro's "Meneseteung" and Margaret Atwood's "Age of Lead."
- Review of Confidence Men and Painted Ladies (Feb. 1998) (Scanned)