Thursday, August 28, 2008

Hello Out There!

Fishing Spot!

Hello everyone, I have received your emails and I am back. I apologize for leaving my blog for so long. I was out there living, well summering, instead of in here writing about it. I'm here now though, and I thought of all of you and took a bunch of pictures of where I've been this summer month. I am back to work now, it's been two days. My new classes are great. All together I have ten less students that last year, which is great. The smaller classes are truly easier to handle.

Swimming Spot (& broken dam)

Besides fishing and swimming with my daughter, I have started my journey to attain a Master's Degree. I am taking an online program to get my MFA in Creative Writing from National University out on Cali. It is a great deal of work wow. I signed up for a class right before it started so I didn't have too much time to prepare, huge mistake there were six books to read and seven films to view. Whew.
The books were: Utopia by Thomas More written in 1516 - it was hard to read, interesting but drawn out.
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood written in 1986 - Great read
Looking Backward: 2000-1887 by Edward Bellamy written in 1888 - my favorite book from this class, not the best writing but really thought provoking
Anthem by Ayn Rand written in 1938 - didn't like this one although I had already read it, it is good writing however
Casear's Column by Ignatius Donnelly written in 1890 - hated this book moreso the ideas in it than the writing, no maybe the writing too just not so much
Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman written in 1915 - Excellent, very interesting utopian community with only women, women who can even procreate alone! Ladies would enjoy reading this novella.

Blade Runner (1982)- Good movie while watching it, forgot all about it shortly after, strange, it was a dystopia with a negative future for our world. The coolest thing was the street language, or slang, was actually all different languages mixed together, which I can totally see happening I think we all throw in a word or two in another language from time to time
The Handmaid’s Tale (1990) This movie was like the book, very interesting, another dystopia, but worth watching
A Man for All Seasons (1966)- This was my favorite of all, a historically accurate movie about Thomas More who was a Lord Chancellor of England, and who actually wrote Utopia. He was an interesting character, to say the least. Watch this and then watch The Other Boleyn Sister, they take place at the same time.
Metropolis (1927)- Weird, but actually worth a look, black and white with no words, some parts are missing so they write in captions, a guess as to what the machine age would be like
1984 (1984) - I've seen this before and I just don't like it, I don't know why.
The Time Machine (1960)- I liked watching this movie again, I had forgotten what it was really all about, fun flashback
The Stepford Wives The original is more interesting than the Nicole Kidman version

Not required but mentioned so I watched Gulliver's Travels. I had never seen this, I watched the one with the guy from Cheers, Ted Danzing?, anyway, I watched it with my girl and we loved it. It is a three hour movie, we watched an hour at a time and then talked about it as we did other things, and we both wanted to get back and see what would happen next. Great movie for a rainy day.

Okay, that is my utopian/dystopian book and film review. I loved the class, it is so interesting to read what other people think of what you just read or saw, and to see what different concepts it brings to other people's minds. Sometimes, I hadn't even thought of what someone in the class had noticed the most about things. There was quite a bit of conversation back and forth with quotes from the New Testament and Christian rhetoric, two of the guys were funny, but honestly I felt stupid as to what they were arguing about I did not even know. I think it was too much in a month for me. My next class, my first official creative writing class is eight weeks. That will be better, especially with work.

The Beach


Claudia said...

Beautiful photos on the big screen. So glad you had a good Summer. That reading program looks tough! All the best to both of you.

Geoff. said...

TeacherMom, thanks goodness you're ok, I was getting quite worried about you. The holiday spot looks fabulous and I hope you caught a fish; our summer is just around the corner (first day of spring today) and it's been a very wet winter.
The writing course sounds fun, although one can get a very jaundiced view of what 'critics' call literature. Best wishes.