Alexander Pope, “An Essay on Man”

1.  Pope describes the purpose of his poem as “to vindicate the ways of God to man.”  What do you think he means by this?

2. Choose one metaphor that Pope uses to describe the universe and explain its significance.

3.  What would it mean to believe that “whatever is, is right?”  How would that affect one’s outlook or behavior?

4.  According to Pope, what place do human beings have in the universe in relation to other creatures?

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Akinari, “Bewitched”

1. Why do you think Toyo-o continues to be involved with Manago even after he suspects that she is a demon of some sort?
2. Why do you think people (both in the 18th century, when Akinari was writing, and in our own day) are attracted to ghost stories or tales of the supernatural?
3. Does “Bewitched” have anything to teach its readers? If so, what? What is Akinari’s message in this text?
4. The text describes Manago as”bewitchingly voluptuous.” What does Akinari’s representation of Manago tell us about feminine beauty?

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Introduction

Hello my name is Jeremy Acevedo and I’m a Marketing major. I may be the youngest one in the class, i’m 18 years old and i’m a transfer student from Kingsborough College. I’m from New York, Brooklyn more specifically but I moved around a lot in my life and now I reside in Staten Island. Right now I work at a movie theatre that’s close to my house. Been working there for a little over a year now, but I don’t plan on staying much longer. The biggest interest in my life right now is music, I’ve been writing for about three years maybe a little longer and it is easily the most enjoable and fruitful activity I’m apart of. I’ve only performed twice on stage thus far, the first at a small music festival in New Jersey and the second time for a school event in New Jersey over the summer. But that will change this year, with more shows already in the works. I chose to go to school for marketing to further this interest and also because my mother wants me to go to college. I figured if I was gonna go to college I might a well learn more about how to navigate and understand markets, because being able to sell anything is a valuable skill. Besides that however my life is a bit of a bore. If I’m not at school or work I try to be in the gym and I’m in none of those places I’m with some friends working on music and hanging out. In case you’re wondering I mainly rap but that’s not the only music I’m interested in. I’ll listen to anything from Jay-z to Marvine Gaye really. I just like music and the challenge of always trying to make something better than my last. That being said I’m only 18 so the room for improvment is immeasurable and hopefully this takes me to places I can only dream of, and allows me to meet and work with all the people I idolize. Then I won’t have to go to college, but I still may I’m undecided.

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Discuss the theme of appearances or masks in Tartuffe? How does the issue of appearances vs. reality connect with the central concerns of the play?

Tartuffe puts on the mask of a religious, saint-like person. When Orgon first meets Tartuffe he is awed by his virtue and humility. Therefore, he brings Tartuffe into the household in order to teach his family how to be as virtuous and humble as Tartuffe. Orgon gives Tartuffe full confidence and eventually manages to trust and confide in him more than his own family. Tartuffe plays a character that is righteous and immune to criticism from the rest of the family members, solely because he appears as a religious and humble person that is “pitied” by Orgon. Where in the reality Tartuffe has been manipulating Orgon to leverage some power over the other members of the household.

Except for Elmire, who actually have power over Tartuffe. Tartuffe’s motivation and goal was to take over the household in place of Orgon and acquire his own, over everyone, through deceit. Elmire has acquire power over Tartuffe by using her own feminine charm to seduce Tartuffe into not being able to manipulate her and having her will be heard.

Madam has also fallen for the tricks of Tartuffe himself. Madam accuses everyone of being inept and considers that everyone should follow in the footsteps of Tartuffe. Madam brings up how everyone is flaunting their own riches, Elmire, wearing extravagant clothing and having carriages parked outside. Implying that Elmire was a tramp of some sort by her “appearance” or the look she is going for. Appearances are but the shallow look on an individual, in Elmire’s case, she wasn’t dressing up to be attract other men because she was cheating or anything. Tartuffe played and dressed like a religious saint, however, was actually a conniving trickster that was trying to take over. The masks they put on are techniques of deceit and manipulation, in order to achieve some sort of power over others.

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Introduction

Hello my name is Jean. I am a finance major here at baruch. I’ve been attending school on and off as my interests in subjects have been shifting, however, i think im going to stick to finance since it has always been so interesting to me. I work full-time as a server at a casual fine dining restaurant and been there for three years so far. I do enjoy everything a restaurant has to offer, since i’m in NYC, there is endless opportunities to explore the delicacy of food and beverage. Who doesn’t like to eat and drink? One of my hobbies is going to the gym and hitting the weights. Always been a huge part of my life since high school, and it has taught many lessons aside from also revitalizing me. I’m hoping to absorb as much as i can from these great readings that we will be exploring this semester.

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How are courtesans represented in the story? Why do you think Feng Menglong chooses to depict them this way?

The story “Du Tenth Sinks The Jewel Box In Anger” was written in the 17th century and actually published in 1624. Feng Menglong, the author of the story, had access to classical Chinese, yet depicts the story in a vernacular language. As the date suggests, the story was written hundreds of years ago when courtesans (prostitutes) in particular had no freedom/independence of their own and were not considered up-to-the-mark as compared to the ordinary people (in short, got no respect from anybody). I have come up to this conclusion because Du Mei, a.k.a Du Tenth, who is described as such an adorable person inside out  in the story had to struggle so much to buy her freedom which wasn’t long-lived. In my opinion, Feng Menglong chooses to depict ‘courtesans’ this way in the story to highlight how they are not any different from any other person yet they are treated so differently. For instance, Du Tenth had been feeding the madam off her services for so long but still she had to convince the madam to set her free in exchange of a price. Moreover, when Li Jia headed out for help to gather the money, everybody refused thinking of his situation as “just an excuse to get money to enjoy with that whore”. In return of it all, it turns out that even though Du Mei was a prostitute by profession, she was more genuine and loyal than Li Jia who is convinced by a stranger to separate from Du Tenth. Also, when Du Tenth decides to see her sisters before she sets off for the journey with Li Jia, we find that her sisters celebrate her independence and upcoming journey wit Li Jia in the best way possible and also provide her supplies which would help her and Master Li throughout their journey. Overall, the role of courtesans in the story was very significant and mind-changing about facts such as a courtesan is not trustworthy, loyal, or worthy of anything.

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Introduction

Hello! My name is Anthony Arines, but my friends call me Tony. I’m a US Navy veteran and this is my 3rd attempt at finishing my bachelor’s degree. I’ve been going to school on and off for the last 6 years. I did a lot of traveling around the country for my last job and finally decided to settle down and finish my education. I grew up in Brooklyn, but have lived all over the country. California is my second favorite state, with New York being the first. I love meeting people, traveling, writing, photography and outdoor activities. I’m very excited to be a student again and I’m slowly getting back into the groove of things. New York City has definitely changed since the last time I lived here in 2009, but at least we still have some of the best pizza this world has to offer!

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Tartuffe

The main character in this play, Tartuffe exemplifies extreme religious hypocrisy in more ways than one. Through the entirety of this work Tartuffe continuously contradicts his supposed Catholic values by committing sinful acts against a multitude of the included characters. One of the most obvious examples of this in the play is his lustful behavior toward Elmire regardless of her clear disinterest. A secondary illustration of the outward religious hypocrisy of Tartuffe is his use of severe manipulation to persuade Orgon into trusting him around his family and eventually with his estate. An example of modern day religious hypocrisy similar to this is the way that some higher powers in the Catholic community have been known to use their power for their own advancement. This can occur when the member of the community uses their status as a spiritual being and leader in the church maliciously to acquire more followers or wealth using these false pretenses.

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Introduction

Hi, my name is Shinelle. I’m a business major specializing in Human Resources Managemebt. I am a transfer student from B.C.C and this is my first semester at Baruch. I am 21 years old and I pride myself in being a hard worker and one that is willing to go the extra mile to excel. I hope to learn great things this semester both from out learned professor and from my fellow classmates as well. All the best this semester guys.

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INTRODUCTION

Hello, my name is Aida Sadio. Y. BIKIENGA. I’m 23 years old. I’m from Burkina faso I move to the USA three year ago for my studies. I’m a transferred student from ASA College. I have earn my Associate degree at ASA college and now I’m doing my bachelor and my major is accounting. My first language is french and i’m still learning English. I have a bad oral communication but I love maths and physics.

This is my second semester at Baruch I took fall last semester in which it was pretty interesting. I did good for my classes and I made a lot of friends. I currently live in the Bronx with my Mom  and I love cooking.  I’m looking forward to learn in this spring class and see what Baruch has to offers on my journey.

 

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