Saturday, January 23, 2010


Making my own online portfolio was a challenge for me because I'm not really good with the computers. At the beginning it was really hard because I did not know what I am supposed to write and post, but then after writing the first piece I understood that it is not so hard. It was interesting to see my classmates' portfolios because every portfolio had different design and the stories were different too. It was fun to make comments on some of the posts and also read the comments for my posts. I liked the assignment because we were free to write for everything that is interesting to us.
The exchange was not really successful because of some technical reasons but I was really excited about the chance to talk to someone who lives in US. Somehow I became more self-confident and responsible toward my work. I wanted to be done with everything on time in order my partner to be able to see my post and comment on them. I think that this online blog gave me the opportunity to reach more people over the world and it is a good experience for my future writings. So I think that it was great.

What is the effect of television on people's communication?

Although television has an informative, educational and entertaining function, I think that it has destroyed communication among friends and family. Different movies and serials give us fake and unrealistic models of communication. Spending hours in watching various shows limits our time for talking with friends and family. Television destroys our communication because there is no exchange of information while watching it; people can get no personal experience.
Almost all television shows present models of communication. Imaginary characters show how they live and interact with each other. In real world this television communication is impossible because people are real; they have real feelings, wishes and problems. Watching these dramas all day makes us feel part of the action, but actually no one can hear what we think or feel; the reverse part of the communication is missing. For example, if we watch a 1200 series long serial, where there are a lot of lies, complex situations, characters that suddenly become rich or a miracle happens to them, we can not talk to them and share our thoughts about all of this. We will know everything about them, but they will know nothing about us. This destroys our ability to communicate because we start to follow a no interactive model of television communication.
Another reason that television destroys our communication with people is that it consumes our time. Instead of watching meaningless movies, we can read a book or spend more time with our friends and family, discussing our and their problems. The essence of real communication is hidden in getting a feedback. To have a communication, there should be more than one person involved. If we spend less time in front of the television at home, we will have more time for talking with our families, going out with friends, doing relaxing activities and for something more useful.
Finally, television destroys communication with friends and family because it does not give us exchange of information which does not improve our development. To communicate effectively we need to see the other person, to see his/her face expressions and to know his/her point of view. The discussed topic may be soothing seen on television, but we can not have communication with the TV, so we have to spend less time in front of it and more time discussing different things.
Communication happens between two or more people. When we communicate we have to hear the other’s opinion and share his/her feelings. Television does not present us with real models of communication. It exhausts our free time and we hampers out healthful social relations.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

The “tragedy” of Othello-on the ridge of the death

OTHELLO (ACT V, Scene ii,310-332, p.257)
    Behold, I have a weapon.
A better never did itself sustain
Upon a soldier’s thigh. I have seen the day
That with this little arm and this good sword
I have made my way through more impediments
Than twenty times your stop. But, oh, vain boast!
Who can control his fate? ’tis not so now.
Be not afraid, though you do see me weaponed.
Here is my journey’s end, here is my butt,
And very sea-mark of my utmost sail.
Do you go back dismayed? ’tis a lost fear.
Man but a rush against Othello’s breast,
And he retires. Where should Othello go?—
Now, how dost thou look now? O ill-starred wench,
Pale as thy smock! When we shall meet at compt
This look of thine will hurl my soul from heaven
And fiends will snatch at it. Cold, cold, my girl,
Even like thy chastity. O cursed, cursed slave!
Whip me, ye devils,
From the possession of this heavenly sight!
Blow me about in winds, roast me in sulfur,
Wash me in steep-down gulfs of liquid fire!—
Oh, Desdemona! Desdemona! dead! Oh! Oh!

“Tragedy, then, is an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play; in the form of action, not of narrative; with incidents arousing pity and fear, wherewith to accomplish its katharsis of such emotions. . . . Every Tragedy, therefore, must have six parts, which parts determine its quality—namely, Plot, Characters, Diction, Thought, Spectacle, Melody.”(McManus, Barbara.) This is Aristotle’s idea about the meaning of tragedy and “Othello" by William Shakespeare, fulfills almost all of the requirements needed to satisfy Aristotle's idea of a true tragedy. The tragedy has a noble protagonist in Othello whose one flaw will ultimately lead to his downfall. Othello’s speech almost at the end of the play, after killing his true and only love, Desdemona, shows the understanding of the character that the end is coming. The speech reveals a lot about the character of the protagonist, that he is an honorable person who will die with honor, a person who can realize his own mistakes, and a person who cannot fear by truth.
Othello is a soldier; he did terrifying things to different people when he was on the front. He went through many difficult moments and he overcame them. In his speech he defines himself as a different person now. He says:
tis not so now. Be not afraid, though you do see me weaponed (316-317).
He knows that he is not the same as he was many years ago; he believes that Desdemona has changed him and he has become a better person. He understands that people are scarred by his personality and his sword. His words show that he is not a person who can frighten people because his journey is about to end. He tries to save his reputation, he wants to be an honorable man who is respected by the Venetian society and to show his motives for killing his lovely wife. But now in this speech he talks about death and about the end of his honor. In this speech he realizes that while trying to defend his honor, he was not able to defend the most valuable thing in his life-his love Desdemona.
Here is my journey’s end, here is my butt,
And very sea-mark of my utmost sail.
Do you go back dismayed? ’tis a lost fear.
Man but a rush against Othello’s breast,
And he retires (319-322).
He is not passionate enough to live this life without her. He does not want to scare people anymore; he wants just to stop everything.
The whole play revolves around the themes of jealousy and honor. This speech is right after the desire of one full of love and jealousy man to defend his reputation after understanding that his wife is cheating on him. In Othello’s speech Shakespeare shows that he is realizing his mistake not to believe Desdemona’s words and to be manipulated so brilliantly by Iago.
Whip me, ye devils,
From the possession of this heavenly sight!
Blow me about in winds, roast me in sulfur,
Wash me in steep-down gulfs of liquid fire!—
Oh, Desdemona! Desdemona! dead! Oh! Oh! (328-332)
Othello is full of pain and wrath. He cannot look at the heavenly sight of Desdemona. He wants to be tortured because he is feeling so bad because he believed the villain’s words. He understands that believing Iago was the worst mistake he had ever made. He realizes that any torture will hurt less than the pain in his heart; he wants to be with Desdemona and exactly these final words of his speech foreshadow that he is going to be with her in a different world- the world after the death though he seems to think he will go to hell. So this speech suggests that Othello is in the moment between life and death-he is on the edge of death.
Othello is a real protagonist of a tragic play. His speech reveals that his mistake led to his downfall-he lost his love in order to defend his reputation, but he is the one who is manipulated and treated as a puppet, so again his reputation is lost somewhere. The only thing that he is able to do in order to save his honor is to end his own journey.