Brown Eyed Women

Ever since 1965, the Grateful Dead has been producing revolutionary music and shaping the way rock is perceived. Out of the 317 cover songs created and the story’s they tell, the song “Brown Eyed Women“, from the album Europe ’72 is poetic in every sense. This song is a little special for a variety of reasons, “Brown-Eyed Women was never recorded on a studio album, but it was included on the live album Europe ‘72 and was played at 340 concerts. The song was first performed on August 23, 1971 at the Auditorium Theater in Chicago”(genius.com). Additionally, “Brown Eyed Women” displays a story, and through a variety of literary techniques, it draws the listener in. As the song begins, the listener is presented with a story about a man named Jack Jones. The lyrics follow:

Gone are the days when the ox fall down

Take up the yoke and plow the fields around

Gone are the days when the ladies said “Please

Gentle Jack Jones, won’t you come to me”

Overall, the song tells a story in era of the Great depression. As the song begins to flow, the listener is brought to a time were the focus character, Jack Jones is now old. As the songs states, “when the ox fall down”, this is a representation of the fall of the mischief in his early life. As the song progresses so does time and Jacks life. As life continues, rough times of the Great Depression kick in and Jack is in a financial crisis, the lyrics write:

The bottle was dusty, but the liquor was clean

Sound of the thunder with the rain pourin’ down

And it looks like the old man’s gettin’ on

While in the midst of the prohibition and the Great depression, Jack goes to the streets to make a buck off of liquor. As the lines include “Sound of the thunder” the thunder shows of Jacks situation and how bad things keep falling. Following this, poor Jack is hit with another crisis. The song writes:

Delilah Jones was the mother of twins

Two times over, and the rest were sins

All in all, Jack Jones loses his wife Delilah. Following her death, Jack becomes depressed and the relationship with his twin sons becomes poor. As the lyrics state, “the rest were sins” the “sins” in the line represents the falling relationship with the rest of his family. Overall, many of the Grateful Dead’s songs tell stories. Through these stories, the diction and syntax deliver powerful messages and add meaning to each story.

https://genius.com/Grateful-dead-brown-eyed-women-lyrics

Beloved and Song of Solomon

Toni Morrison is hands down an amazing author and a person who shaped how stories should be told. Within her many novels, Morrison has wrote stories that highlighted themes of discrimination, family, beauty, and included twists of the supernatural. Within her renown novel Beloved, there is beauty in the way she presents the supernatural and things that cannot be explained. As Beloved progresses, there is a ghost that gives a deeper meaning to slavery and how a person relives trauma. Similar to Beloved, she has another novel that depicts these similar attributes.

From reading Song of Solomon in last years English class and reading Beloved this year I was surprised to find a connection in the peculiar parts of the novels. Obviously there will be connections because Morrison incorporates similar themes and is the author of both books. But besides those factors, if one takes a look into the deeper supernatural aspects of each book, the connections are clear. Within Song of Solomon, there is reference to folktale of slaves flying back to Africa. Within this supernatural aspect, this also connects to the ghost in beloved because both embody issues that arise from slavery.

Overall, Toni Morrison delivers stories that captivate how one perceives slavery and truly gives deeper meaning. Although her stories range in character, the deepest meanings are quite clear.

Exit West and My Personal Connection

Mohsin Hamid’s novel “Exit West” portrays a variety of themes, but one that stuck out most to me was migration. Although there are themes of love, family, and religion, I found that the novels themes revolving immigrants and migration connected best to me because of my grandparents.

In my life I tend to be surrounded by two different worlds, my grandparents on my mothers side and my grandparents on my fathers side. My grandmother from my fathers side migrated from Panama and my grandfather on my fathers side migrated from England. Although these places are on opposite sides of the world, both these people share a life changing experience. Like my grandparents, Nadia and Saeed had migrated to a totally different world and had to adapt to many life changes. In today’s world, and especially in the US, there is a lot of commotion with fleeing immigrants and negative opinions towards them. Exit West is so captivating because it gives a perspective of how some people are searching for a better life and seeking asylum.

Overall with my personal connections and the current news, Exit West was a great representation of people in search of hope. In the end I find it important that more people read these types of Novels so they can escape their perfect worlds and dive into the realization of how many people live.

Existentialism Within The Joker

Within Todd Phillips newest film, Joker, Joaquin Phoenix plays the infamous Joker and displays a different take to the Character. Overtime, the fictional super villain’s image has been twisted and shaped by many people. Traditionally, the joker has been viewed as a funny yet evil character. Phillips portrays his version of the Joker, through darker, intense depictions, and representative values of a existentialist.

Throughout the movie, there are themes of moral living, flouting aesthetic, and radical movements. As Joker develops, his mind becomes more free and mirrors Meursault. Although the Joker is narcissist and violent, the views of murder also relate to Meursaults. In the end of both Joker and The Stranger, their final feelings of liberation are the same, accepting.

Overall there are many ways Joker can be tied to ideas of existentialism. In conclusion, Meursault and the Joker view life on a similar level, people, and death.

“The Cariboo Cafe” and Current Events

In Helena Maria Viramonte’s, “The Cariboo Cafe”, she constructs a powerful story that brings the reader to face hard reality’s, deal with current issues, an illustrates how many people live today. Throughout the past several weeks, “The Cariboo Cafe” has stuck out of the stories we have read to me, because of the intense reality that is shown. Hopelessness, Family, Immigration, Horror.

In many ways Viramonte’s story is not pleasant, but it strikes with a certain power. A Power to provide a fictional story but also display images in the readers head that truly stick. As of 2018, ICE held more than “42,000 people in custody each day” (CNN). All of these people that are detained in these horrible conditions are in search of a better life. Sadly, the characters within “The Cariboo Cafe” do the same, stuck in horrible conditions and try to persevere.

In the closing of Helena Maria Viramonte’s story, the third perspective shows a desperate mother who has grown so sick of pain, that she still is in search of her dead child. Many people like the woman of the third perspective face these very real problems and in the world that we live in, we do not always see that. Overall Helena’s story is most powerful to me because it shows a very real situation.

https://www.cnn.com/2018/11/12/politics/ice-detention/index.html