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In an Antique Land by Amitav Ghosh: A Traveller’s Tale

in-an-antique-land

Travel writing is a literary genre that one might look upon with a degrading attitude; a Darwinian approach of the sort would be enough to send the branch of writing straight down to the bottom of the pyramid of genres, or as seventeenth century’s European academics would put it, the …

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The Dilemma Within Wuthering Heights: A Freudian Perspective

pavel-tchelitchew-portrait-of-jacques-stettiner

Wuthering Heights is a novel rife with opposing elements, from the constantly present juxtaposition between the natural and civilized realms to the contradictory dispositions of such characters as Heathcliff and Edgar Linton. Similarly, the father of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, viewed the human psyche as another landscape of conflicting drives and …

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Apocalypse as Conveyed in the Romantic Movement: Not World’s End!

apocalypse-romantic-movement

Although the word “apocalypse” is always pictured as an end-of-the-world scenario, the word carries more meaning than is typically understood. ‘Apocalypse’ connotes a prophetic revelation regarding a catastrophic event which will bring with it vast scenes of violence and destruction but which ushers in a new peaceful millennium. In Christian doctrine, …

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Frederick Douglass: How Slavery Affected Both Slaves and Slaveholders

frederick-douglass-slavery

In Frederick Douglass’s account of his transformation from a slave to a free man, he reveals, through instances from his own life and that of others, the dehumanization that accompanies the institution of slavery. He recounts how, from the very first moments of childhood, a slave is regarded by the white …

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The Castle of Otranto: The First Fort in Gothic Literature

karl-friedrich-gothic-castle

In 1764, the son and heir of a successful politician, Horace Walpole, launched his and humanity’s first attempt at Gothic fiction with his remarkable novel, The Castle of Otranto. Due to several elements that are present throughout the book, it is widely considered to be the initiating spark of a …

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Everett Shinn: The Revolt of a Wooden Canvas

everett-shinn-all-night-cafe

The euphoric reward of practicing an art may at times present an opportunity to claim a rather dignified self-image; an illusory sense of superiority. Such a condition had baffled many minds that perceived it as an affront to the unspoken, artistic adjuration. A reaction was the natural impulse of those whose …

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John Donne’s Batter my Heart: The Unholy Call of Reasoning

batter-my-heart-by-john-donne

“Doubt as sin,” writes Friedrich Nietzsche, the German philosopher, in his publication Daybreak: Thoughts on the Prejudices of Morality (86), criticizing the dogmatic pillars of Christianity that adhere to a resilient belief of God and religion. A true Christian, argues Nietzsche, ought to rectify their faith through “blindness and intoxication,” where “reason” …

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