Thursday, September 13, 2012

Literary Analysis 9/13 - Caroline Quinn

Throughout the literary pieces “Mending Wall” by Robert Frost, “Slam, Dunk & Hook” by Yusef Komunyakaa, “Common Ground” by Judith Ortiz Cofer and “The Service of Faith and Promotion of Justice in Jesuit Higher Education” written by Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, I found that there was a common theme of both community and unity. Although it looks like each piece has its own meaning only on the surface, I found that if I looked in their own deeper meaning, they can all relate to each other in one way or another. 
In the poem “Mending Wall” by Robert Frost, I originally had thought that the poem was solely about a divided relationship between neighbors. However, looking past the surface, I could see that the narrator was describing something much more than that. I took it as the narrator was trying to tell how even though there was a clear division between them, there was still a sense of unity because they are neighbors with each other. They may not have been the best of neighbors at one point, however, it seems to me that throughout the poem, they have tried to mend their differences and become a civil community.
In the poem “Slam, Dunk & Hook” by Yusef Komunyakaa, I noticed right away a strong prevalent theme of community. This is because the narrator continuously talked about playing with other boys on the basketball team. I noticed that Komunyakaa described the team as a whole instead of breaking it down by individual players. This technique really represents the community and coming together of the team because it shows all the hard work they dedicate themselves to and also portrays how well they actually work as a united team.
Throughout the poem “Common Ground” by Judith Ortiz Cofer, I was able to single out the theme that Cofer was trying to portray. The opening and closing line is what really spoke to me and what showed me the most prevalent theme in the poem. These lines specifically relate back to the unity and togetherness that a family has. The author describes the unity that a family has is carried mostly through the bloodline and or common family features that are shared. From the connected ties in a family, it points to the bottom lines which say “like arrows pointing downward/ to our common ground”. The family blood line is what physically shows how a family is united as one.
In the speech “The Service of Faith and Promotion of Justice in Jesuit Higher Education” given by Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, the most evident theme that he talks about is community and how the Jesuit community is considered always as a whole. Kolvenbach speaks specifically about community in a Jesuit education and how the Jesuit mission betters our whole person in the process. Kolvenbach describes that the Jesuit education focuses on faith and dedicated service to others in need. He also explains that when serving others, it brings people together as a community and to become united. 

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