The symbolization of dreams and spirituality in “Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead”

Throughout the novel “Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead” by Olga Tokarczuk, there are mentions of the main protagonist, Janina, having dreams relating to spirituality and communicating through them. In Janina’s mentality, she views the dreams as a representation of spirits on another plane of existence is trying to reach out to her and warn her of what’s yet to come.

In a deeper sense, we can start understanding of what the true reason of her dreams are that could have been manifested from her anxiety, uncertainness and surreal reality of her present life. She believed that humans were to be judged if something were to have happened and how the natural world is to be sacred, including animals which had a powerful impact to the novel. She sees these living, breathing creatures as a part of her and part of spirituality as it played a significant role. The novel presents a meaning and a purpose of the true reality hidden by Janina’s view of spirituality. It explores the proper nature of humanity and the importance of the uprising destructive impact that had occurred through the story. This ties into her vivid and surreal dreams as a message towards the readers that there are multiple differing ways to find their own version of true meaning of life, even if it is through spirituality or other forms of beliefs.

Overall, the portrayal of Janina of her dreams and spirituality mentality that tied together, has been shown drastically throughout the novel and left an impression for the reader. The reader gains the ability to understand and view from Janina’s eyes of how it is like to imagine a reality through another belief, such as spirituality. As well as having the understanding of how the novel presented a message towards the audience and highlighted of how Janina’s communications through her dreams came to be based on the natural world.

(Sittin’ On) the Dock of the Bay

(Sittin’ On) the Dock of the Bay” by Otis Redding in the album of The Dock of the Bay is a R&B/Soul song released in 1968. I chose this specific song as I find it pleasing to listen to but the lyrics seem intriguing everytime I listen to it.

I left my home in Georgia
Headed for the Frisco Bay
‘Cause I’ve had nothin’ to live for
It look like nothin’s gonna come my way

We can see that these four lyrics in the beginning of the story tells a story of a man (perhaps the singer himself) experience loneliness and depression. It seems that he has given hope from others and in himself. Later on in the song, we are presented with a more presentable idea of what the lyrics mean in a deeper sense.

Look like nothin’s gonna change
Everything still remains the same
I can’t do what ten people tell me to do
So I guess I’ll remain the same, yes

Sittin’ here restin’ my bones
And this loneliness won’t leave me alone, listen
Two thousand miles, I roam
Just to make this dock my home

Here, we can see desperation and struggle. Even more so, a call for help. These lyrics are like internal thoughts and the individual is desperately trying to see the meaning of life or a use of change but decides to stay the same. It seems like he has found acceptance towards the end of the lyrics of “making this dock his home” even after trying to escape this loneliness and emptiness inside him. This may be due to having no real meaning for ones self in life and needing to find a steady pace of life in order to be content.

Sittin’ on the dock of the bay
Wastin’ time

At the very end of the song, we are presented with the man saying “Wastin’ time.” This can come off across of being bored of life and not finding a real reason to make it exciting. This intrigues me as how deep the lyrics are despite being behind cheery tunes and the singer’s tone throughout the song. Not only do the lyrics talk about the individual being presented in the song being lonely and not content with life, we can also see him trying to change, giving hope to himself until he lost it all and went back the same path he started.

Exit West Analysis On Saeed & Nadia

In Exit West, there has been character growth that Saeed and Nadia both went through. In the beginning, before the migration, there are written as two individuals who have no interaction with one another. Once they have started interacting with each other, they both got along well enough to meet their close ones. Later on, they had developed a relationship with each other and this is where the migration with the both of them begin. When they both have successfully migrated, this is where the spark between them fell. Despite leaving their home country in which is a war-zone at the time, Saeed still longed for the nostalgia his country brought to him. Nadia, on the other hand, believes cutting ties with her home country would be beneficial, including removing Saeed from her life. The character growth in the novel brings a new perspective on how any type of scenario such as migration can affect a person and their connections to others.

Overall Meaning of Migration in Exit West

In Exit West by Mohsin Hamid shows a drastic meaning behind the story line. We can see how two of the protagonists, Nadia and Saeed, fleeting to other countries throughout the novel. There are many points in the book where it shows the difficulties of migration and what it comes with if in that position. Even when successfully fleeting to a new country, there are some obstacles that manage to get in the way which is portrayed in one of the scenes. On page 127, it quotes, “Soon there was a vanload more of them, in full riot gear, and then a car with two more who wore white shirts and black vests and were armed with what appeared to be submachine guns, and on their black vests was the word POLICE in white letters but these two looked to Saeed and Nadia like soldiers.” Even going through migration could lead you back to square one. Perhaps not physically but mentally it can jarr a person such as someone like Nadia and Saeed. It is greatly portrayed how individuals who go through migration and their hardships and obstacles that comes with it are portrayed and written in Exit West.

Meursault’s Development on The Stranger

When it comes to Albert Camus’ novel, The Stranger, we are given a detailed description of the central protagonist, Meursault. He is described as cold and uncaring. He is welded in a cage that restricts his emotions and makes reality meaningless to him. This is evident throughout the novel, beginning with lost expressions at Maman’s funeral. This goes even further in terms of exacting vengeance on his friend Raymond, resulting in his imprisonment. In the later chapters, he chooses to disregard moral principles and rejects new ideas from the chaplain. When Meursault pleads guilty, we see a distinct change in his demeanor, which shifts from isolation to acceptance. Even as he approaches death, he begins to develop a sense of hope and accepts this new change in his life, displaying happiness.

Analysis of The Stranger

The Stranger by Albert Camus focuses on Meursault, the protagonist, and his development throughout the novel. Considering Meursault’s lack of empathy for others, we are presented with a number of factors. Meursault initially attends Maman’s funeral and displays little to no emotion. Toward the end of the novel, he admits that he did not feel empathy for his own mother during the funeral, nor did he experience any upsetting feelings. He has been described as hollow and devoid of empathy for the lives of others. We are given a description of Meursault’s overcoming and acceptance of what he had done and lost at the end, when he pleads guilty during the trial. When his true nature is revealed, the moral lesson to be learned is revealed. When you take something for granted, the moment it slips from your grasp, you realize you’ve lost something valuable. Only then do you realize that what you had may be nearly impossible to reclaim.

Uncertainty revolving “The Elephant Vanishes”

When finishing “The Elephant Vanishes,” the only thought that was pacing around my mind was, “What happened?” A local man who had an interest in the so-called elephant and its keeper even before they had both vanished knew a puzzling secret. He didn’t quite know for sure but he knew it had to keep hidden away from reporters. Towards the ending, he revealed what has been kept hidden to the readers but left out on what truly caused the disappearance of both the elephant and its keeper. Having a mystery left unsaid is not as uncommon as one would think. This leaves the readers and audience wanting for more and leaving to themselves to imagine what happened next. I believe with this story, it had told a good mystery but had left unsaid what truly happened at the end. Whether this is intended from the author or to keep the audience intrigued, it outstandingly did a successful enigma leaving the reader curious as to what had happened.

Response to “Good Readers and Good Writers”

Nabakov’s piece on the levels of good readers to good writers has strong views and differences when compared. What makes a good writer, in my opinion, is a writer who looks at their own piece as a readers’ point of view. Writing, for many, is seen as a strenuous skill to grasp and excel at but could be very rewarding. As writers publish their work to the public, the readers will be able to see a “new world” that was developed by the author. Nabakov explains how writers and readers need to both work with each other to have the fullest potential in a written piece. Readers provide the writer by giving recognition to the piece. Writers are able to give their readers emotions such as a “tingle” down the spine and are able to influence their feelings. In short, Nabakov’s passage shows the link between good writers and how they influence good readers and how it is related to society.