*Sherlock (novel) and A Tale of Two Cities Spoilers*
In English class, we are currently reading A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. Outside of class, I am reading Sherlock by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. In the novels, it struck me that Madame Defarge and Mycroft have similar and somewhat understated roles in the society around them. It’s not until late in the Sherlock series that Sherlock reveals Mycroft is the state. He keeps all matters of national importance of all branches sorted out in his systematic head, putting it all together, and always having the ability to recall all events. Similarly, in A Tale of Two Cities, in book 2, chapter 15, Defarge tells Jacques that she keeps everything told to her in both her memory and her knitting.
This got me thinking, many people in the modern society don’t confide things to our own memories anymore. Instead, we rely on the ever-changing virtual world– the internet. Recently, I read an edition of Scientific American in which discusses the psychological changes happening to us because of virtual concepts like Google. Because of the convenience of technology, most brains spend less time remembering petty things like schedules. I haven’t completely finished reading the article, so I’ll cut this blog short and end it here.
Recently in my English class, we spent a little more than a whole entire class period just trying to dissect the probable meaning of the first paragraph in A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens. (quoted below)
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
This strikes me as incredible that a whole class can spend so long discussing possible patterns, meanings, implicit references, and literary devices in merely 120 characters, or 613 characters, contained in only one sentence. There are several different patterns, usages, and hints that our class THOUGHT Dickens meant to include that hints to future events or just clever placement and word choice.
Short Dissection: (This analysis isn’t professional, merely what I’ve observed or things I remembered from class discussion. If you think I left anything important out, corrections, or you noticed something I haven’t, feel free to comment below! I know some things are worded awkwardly (because “my thoughts are stars that I cannot fathom into constellations” -John Green) and I won’t list EVERYTHING that might be in this paragraph, but I hope it helps!)
“Hi, my name is
Hey, so I’ve realized a while ago that I’ve never done a formal introduction to start off my blogging. Meh, who am I kidding, I don’t fare well with formal. So like Julienne, my blogging partner, I’ll make one.
Anyone who knows me outside of the blogging world, the magic of internet, or a virtual world trapped inside a cleverly created box can immediately tell, I’m a socially awkward five year-old unfortunately stuck in the growing body of a teenager with a passion for the world, all things science, several fandoms (I’ll list a few later), clever puns, YouTube videos, Sci-fi shows, and engaging novel plots. So, “Hi!”
“Hay” guys! See what I did there??! *wink wink*