Monday, January 13, 2014

Framing

This photo was taken in Cancun, Mexico. The sun is reflecting on to part of the building, making it a focal point. It is in the bottom corner of the picture so it doesn't obstruct the scenery.

This picture of a lawn chair was also taken in Mexico. I think it's really cool how most of the picture is blurry, except the part to the left. It draws a viewers eye straight there, instead of being drawn to an obvious subject in the middle of the shot. 
This is a picture I took of the Mayan Ruins. I think the off-centered angle makes the shot more interesting. Also, the subject isn't directly in the middle of the shot.
I took this picture at the lake. I like how it gives sort of a birds-eye view. Also, the pier is placed to the right of the frame, and appears much smaller since it's in the distance.
This is a picture I took of a plant. I like how the plant takes up the whole frame, but the viewers eyes are drawn to the middle of the plant, which isn't in the center of the shot. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Section 259-End The Road


Parallel:
“There was light all about him.” (Pg. 277)
“A fading light.” (Pg. 280)
The idea of light comes up in this section. On page 277, this light is all about the man and on page 280, the light fades. I think on page 277 the light is foreshadowing his death. It symbolizes the point at which the man sees everything. He sees his memories, dreams, and horrors. Then, that light fades as he dies.
Contrast
“In the nights sometimes now he’d wake in the black and freezing waste out of the softly colored worlds of human love, the songs of the birds, the sun.” (Pg. 272)
“Beyond that a long concrete causeway. A dead swamp. Dead trees standing out of the grey water trailing gray and relic hagmoss.” (Pg. 274).
In these two quotes, there’s a contrast of environments. The first is much more enjoyable than the second. The man visits this place in his dream and I think it represents heaven. This shows how close he is to death. It also shows how differently the man pictures the after-life compared to present life.
Questions:
What does he mean by, “He is coming to steal my eyes. To seal my mouth with dirt” (261)? Is he talking about death? God?
On page 277, the man is talking to his son about the prophets. What does it mean by, “There is no prophet in the earth’s long chronicle who’s not honored here today. Whatever form you spoke of you were right”? What did he speak?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Section 231-259 The Road

Parallel:
“I can smell it.’ ‘What does it smell like?’ ‘Wet ashes. Come on.” (Pages 231-232)
“They went on in the perfect blackness, sightless as the blind.” (Page 234)
“He bent over, holding his knees. Taste of blood.” (237)
In this section, I noticed repetition of the 5 senses. When there’s nothing left in the world, all you have to rely on are your senses. Here, the man’s senses are clearly foreshadowing a bad ending and I think that’s very important to recognize.
Contrast:
              “Hold this,’ he said. ‘Is it okay, Papa?” (Page 232)
                “Can I look at it?’ Sure you can.” (Page 241)
In the first quote, the boy is hesitant when his father asks him to hold the pistol. Later, this hesitation changes when his father brings back the firepistol. Even though it looks very similar to a gun, the boy is very interested in it and even asks to hold it. I think this shows how the boy is slowly changing and becoming more comfortable with the idea of protecting himself.
Questions:
On page 249, it describes the father waking up and saying “yes” to the boy. Why is he saying yes? What does it mean? Is the boy asleep?
On page 259, why does the boy think he’s the one who has to worry about everything?

Section 211-230 The Road


Parallel:
“He found an antique bucksaw of wood and wire that he used to saw the dead trees to length. The teeth were rusty and dull…” (Page 211)

“The dull green antique coppers spilled from out the tills of their eye sockets onto the stained and rotten coffin floors.” (Page 214)
I found it interesting that a bucksaw of wood and rotten eyeballs were being considered antiques. In the previous world antiques could be things that people valued, but now in a world of nothing there are no guidelines as to what should and shouldn’t be treasured. I think it’s important to consider the fact that the only things left from the past are either “dull” or “rotten”. Also, on page 228 it says, “The brass was dull and there were patches of green on it…”. This is the second time that the words “dull” and “green” were used to describe something (see quote from 214). I haven’t yet discovered why, but I thought it was something to note.

Contrast:
“An hour later they were sitting on the beach and staring out at the wall of smog across the horizon. They sat with their heels dug into the sand and watched the bleak sea wash up at their feet. Cold. Desolate. Birdless.” (Page 215)
“Faint deep coals of the driftwood fire pulsing in the onshore wind. Lying under such a myriad of stars. The sea’s black horizon. He rose and walked out and stood barefoot in the sand and watched the pale surf appear all down the shore and roll and crash and darken again.” (Page 219).

This is a contrast between past and present. The man’s memory on page 219 starts off in a warm setting while he’s settled in a place that feels cold. He remembers the sea’s horizon being black, which gives me a sense that the possibilities beyond the water were endless. Now, he sees a wall of smog across the horizon that is telling them they cannot pass. This wall represents their defeat knowing that their journey can never venture past it. This idea continues on page 216 when the father explains to his son that there is nothing beyond the horizon.  During the flashback, the surf is described as pale which makes me think of something pure. That pureness of the water is gone and is now described as bleak. I also think it’s important to recognize that before the world was destroyed, the man stood towards the sea. This time around, he and his son decide to sit. Before, the sea was not a threat to him and could be used for enjoyable activities or adventurous trips. Now, the sea has taken control and is seen as a vicious force. This contrast truly represents the unbearable change and devastation the world has experienced.

Questions:
On page 218 the boy returns from swimming and starts to cry… Why?
Why was the man so fascinated with the brass sextant? (page 227)

 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Section 185-210


Parallel:

 

            Throughout this section, the father stares at his son. On page 192 it says, “He watched him lick the lid of the tin. With great care”. And on page 205 it says, “He took the bottle from the side pocket of his parka and screwed off the top and watched the boy drink”. I think the father repeatedly watches his son to remind himself of why he needs to keep going. The strength his son gives him is very powerful.

 

Contrast:

 

            In the beginning of the section, it seems that the father is starting to lose his physical strength: “He was coughing every step of it” (92). But then on page 202 it says, “In two more they would begin to get weak”. I don’t think the father wants to believe that he is losing his strength to go on. He wants to believe that there’s still a chance for them to avoid sickness and defeat.

 

Questions:

 

On page 196, is the father talking to himself? Who does he mean by fathers?

 

On page 210, what is the thing the boy is talking about? Why can’t death undo it?

The Road Section 161-184


Parallel:

 

I found that the idea of having no identity is repeated throughout this section. On page 162, Ely asks the man and the boy what they are. Then, McCarthy writes, “They’d no way to answer the question”. Later on page 172 the old man says, “I’m not anything”. This idea is emphasized so readers understand that identity and personal things are gone in a world of nothing.

 

Contrast: On page 175, we see the man thinking, “I am going to die...”. And then on page 177 he says to his son, “Don’t lose heart…”. The man is telling his son to stay positive when really he can’t do the same. This contrast of emotions is important because it shows the strength the man has to have for his son. Also, without his child he would have no reason to keep going.

 

Questions:

 

What does the old man mean by saying, “Where men can’t live gods fare no better”?

 

Why does he refer to a “jungle of Kudzu”? (pg. 177)

The Road Section 136-160


Parallel:

                In this section, the idea of outer space is presented and repeated. On page 153 it says, “Maybe he understood for the first time that to the boy he was himself and alien. A being from another planet that no longer existed”. Later on page 157 the topic is brought up again: “Could they fly to Mars or someplace? ‘No, they couldn’t”. I found this idea very interesting and thought that McCarthy used it to express the drastic change in the world. The boy and his father come from two completely different worlds and that’s an important factor in this book. When he asks his father about Mars, it shows his true desperation for his father to confirm that the hell they’re living in is not the only thing in the universe.

Contrast:

                On page 139, the food and supplies they found is described as, “The richness of a vanished world”. Then, on page 154 it says, “Even now some part of him wished they’d never found this refuge”. They had been searching for “richness” like this for a very long time and when they finally found it, the man regrets it. I think this shows that the fire inside the man is dying and he knows that something good cannot last long in a world like this.

 

Questions: On page 136, what does it mean when it says, “…he very much feared that something was gone that could not be put right again”?

Is the man dreaming on page 141 when it says, “You could wake in the dark wet woods at any time”? If so, why does he refer to the woods?