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Compare and Contrast A Description of New England and A Model of Christian Charity

Compare and Contrast A Description of New England and A Model of Christian Charity

Mankind can be conceived in interesting ways by analyzing the writings of John Smith and John Winthrop. As I read through John Smith‘s “A Description of New England” and John Winthrop’s “A Model of Christian Charity,” it became evident to me that the two readings had similar and different viewpoints of the essential nature of man. Throughout my paper, I will compare their similar beliefs of community and diversity of people and completely contrast their ideas of emphasis on religion and relationships with enemies.

Both authors stress a sense of community and diversity in order to survive in America. Smith could not think of anything to “be more pleasant, than planting and building a foundation for his posterity, got from the rude earth, by God’s blessing and his own industry, without prejudice to any” (Smith 114). This proves Smith believes everyone in the community should join together without showing any type of discrimination. Likewise, Winthrop declares we must have “before our eyes commission and community in the work, our community as members of the same body” (Winthrop 225). He basically wants the settlers to live and share their wealth as one joined community. Smith and Winthrop also agree that diversity needs to exist in each community. “Carpenters, masons, fishers, fowlers, gardeners, husbandmen, sawyers, smiths, spinsters, tailors, weavers, and such like” are the variety of men Smith found in America (Smith 117). All of these types of men contribute a part of their lives to their community. In the same way, Winthrop assumes God ordered “all these differences for the preservation and good of the whole” (Winthrop 21…

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…ospel. Both authors have totally opposing opinions on how an enemy should be treated in America.

Ideas of community and diversity of people are similar for Smith and Winthrop, but their emphasis on religion and relationships with enemies greatly differ. In other words, both authors feel a need for togetherness among various groups of people in order to start a successful life in America. But while Winthrop places more emphasis on God, Smith places more emphasis on having power over the enemy. This makes their views of man completely different when it comes to how religion has affected our lives and how we act toward one another. Like Winthrop, I believe that God is the basis of our life, and He has shown us the way to lead a productive life by loving our enemies. Without religion, America would not have become the civilized country that it is today.

Re-creating Visions of Childhood in Lively’s ‘Oleander, Jacaranda’

Re-creating Visions of Childhood in Lively’s ‘Oleander, Jacaranda’

Penelope Lively’s ‘Oleander, Jacaranda’ is a novella that incorporates three large, complex issues. Lively describes aspects of her childhood, discusses the philosophy behind these ‘frozen moments’ as she tells of the incidents she recollects and gives a thorough portrayal of Egypt in the nineteen thirties and forties.

Lively uses a number of different techniques and language skills in this rather complicated novel. I will discuss the way she attempts to achieve this and will summarize with my personal opinion as to whether or not I think she succeeds.

The author writes about the ‘brilliant frozen moments’ that are the static images from her childhood that are lodged firmly in her’ head. I think the statement she makes regarding these ‘moments’ in that they are ‘distorted by the wisdom’s of maturity’ is an accurate point to make. The images are presented in the present tense giving the feeling of realism to her childhood perceptions. I think Lively demonstrates her passion for these memories in the language she uses to describe them.

The images are not always pleasant ones. For example, she writes about her fear of the animals that she doesn’t understand: ‘The stuffed form of a Nile catfish of great size’ leaves her ‘shuddering’. Her fear of the ferocious creatures that inhabit the environment she lives in are brought alive by her vivid descriptions. The lion house where the animals ‘slink to and fro’ harbors a potent ‘unmistakable’ smell, which she imagines she smells at Bulaq Dakhrur. Here she illustrates her fear by the use of clipped short sentences that are questions as she is obviously uncertain for her safety as she’belts towards the house, given wings by primeval terror’. I think it is apparent that the frozen moments have remained with clarity in her mind due to the enormous emotional content of each one.

She remembers leaving Bulaq Dakhrur and discovering the kit bags of the boys who never came back. At the beginning of Chapter 4, at the young age of six, she is taken by her mother (another unpleasant event linked with her mother) to a’pre-Dynastic burial’ where she views a skeleton lying in the ‘foetal position’- a startling juxtaposition of life next to death.

At other times, she uses sensual descriptions to emphasise a single moment- ‘the blurry chintz’ the ‘clacking needles’ all sounds and textures and smells that engulfed her in her ‘filmy white tent’.

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