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Literary Criticism


William Finnegan’s Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life

By Margaret Boelter

When Europeans first moved to the Americas, they brought famine, disease and new
culture. As they expanded across American soils, many indigenous cultures were forced from
their territory and were subject...

Private Citizens

By Zack Lynch

In the novel Private Citizens, Tony Tulathimutte illustrates the unconventional and unforgiving life college students have to face after graduation. The narration of the story shifts between four friends who all graduated...

Eurocentrism seen in the News of the World

By Gene Tanaka

Eurocentrism, a term created in the 1980’s, refers to the worldview revolving around ideals of Western civilization. Since the end of European colonialism, this social darwinist philosophy has been brought into question (...

A Boy Finds Himself on a Beach, the Tide Turning from Low to High, from Boy to Man

By Chris King

A safe argument can be made that passionate writers do not tell their stories to impress others. Good writers do not pore over their thoughts and struggles with the intention of selling hard copies. The few who do find success...

Contemporary Literature: The Girl Before by JP Delaney

By Hadyn Peffer

The Girl Before, similarly to The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl, is a psychological
thriller written by JP Delaney that comments on male’s control in a society in a number of
different ways. Set in London, a...

Overdetermination in The Association of Small Bombs

By Dylan Schonbuch

From the perspectives of both the United States and hostile Eastern countries,
there has been a constant and everlasting struggle, regarding both power and ideology
between the boastful dominance of the Western...

Deconstructing the Gender Binary in Contemporary Music

By Ashley Levi

Throughout history, the male race has used a myriad of mediums to place themselves in a
an superior position to women. Music today narrates the societal rhetoric where women are seen
in a subordinate light, characterized...

The Fascinating Time Chronicles

By Jorge Ortiz

The Lost Time Accidents is a contemporary novel written by John Wray in 2016. The novel
takes its readers into a transcending time experience through the life of Waldy Tolliver where he
indulges upon...

The Elusive Existence of the Elite

By Emma Agripino

Written in the age of contemporary literature, Sophie McManus’ 2015 novel, The
Unfortunates
, serves as a satirical piece of the elusive world of the one percent. Through the
perspectives of a deteriorating m...

A Twentieth Century Class Struggle

By Jackson Chmara

Throughout the history of time, class has almost always played an integral role in
the life of citizens. Whether one lived in ancient Mesopotamia, or modern day Los Angeles,
it is clear to see the role that...

Everyone Brave is Forgiven

By Bryan Piche

In Chris Cleave's novel, Everyone Brave is Forgiven, the fight for liberty and equality is met with one of the most horrible bombing campaigns in history from Nazi Germany although not under the circumstances one would...

Allen Ginsberg and the Beat Generation

By Cristina King


    Though WWII and its effects could be felt all through the tumultuous forties and fifties, war was not the only incendiary thing to characterize this time period as Jewish homosexual and unorthodox...

Bob Marley: Fight the System

By Hunter Loncar


    Robert Nesta Marley was a singer-songwriter from Jamaica that achieved international fame in the late twentieth century by combining reggae, ska, and rocksteady into his songs. Marley’s f...

Audre Lorde: Parent-Child Relationships

by Michael Ware


    Audre Lorde was an African American poet, feminist, and civil rights activist. Her self- description as a “black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet” showed her complex personality and fearless nat...

The Boss of the Working Class

by Sam Zahn


    Many people think of life as a fairy tale where everyone lives happily ever after. In America, this has been a fixture of our belief system since the founding of our country. The American...

The Fight for Civil Rights in the Poems of Gwendolyn Elizabeth Brooks

by Chloe Butler


    Gwendolyn Elizabeth Brooks was the first black woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for her poetry. Not only a poet, but an author and teacher as well, Gwendolyn brooks strived to make her voice...

Jane Hirshfield: Different than Your Average Western Poet

By Lilly Zoller


    The nineteenth century poet, Jane Hirshfield, was born in New York City on February 24, 1954. She was raised in a privileged family in New York in which she attended school and enjoyed...

Claudia Rankine and Racism in America

By Max Vaupen


    Claudia Rankine is a poet and published author born in 1963 in Kingston, Jamaica. After moving to America at a young age, Rankine grew attached to poetry, specifically Emily Dickinson, and...

Cruelty Upon the Ordinary

By Hank Korsan


    Ai Ogawa writes dramatic monologues about struggling humans seeking change. Identifying herself as Native American, African American, Japanese, and Irish, Ai is a multi- cultured philosopher,...

Seamus Heaney: A Farmer’s Boy

by Dylan Schonbuch


    Seamus Heaney (1939-2013) was a renowned Northern Irish poet, translator and playwright. He grew up on his family’s farm in rural Bellaghy, Northern Ireland, and was expected to carry o...

The Exploration of Universal Concepts in Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet

by Caroline Bamberger


    Kahlil Gibran is arguably one of the most influential poets, philosophers, and writers of both the Arabic and English-speaking worlds. Born in Lebanon in 1883, Gibran immigrated to the...

Pablo Neruda: Embrace your Roots

by Erin McMahon


    One of the most famous poets of his time, Ricardo Eliecer Neftalí Reyes Basalt otherwise known as Pablo Neruda was born in Parral, Chile on July 12, 1904. Recognized mostly for the integration ...

A Persistent Refusal of Submission

by Gabriel Feizbakhsh


    A visionary woman does not just leave a strong legacy, moreover influences others as-well. To say the least, Maya Angelou surpassed the predisposed boundaries that were given to her,...

Mary Oliver: The Natural World

by Raluca Ostoia


    Mary Oliver is a contemporary poet born in Maple Heights, Ohio, a semi-rural suburb of Cleveland on September 10 th , 1935. She is revered for her poetry, winning both the National Book...

Poetic Analysis of Tupac Shakur

By Andrew Arnopole


    Tupac Amaru Shakur was an African-American rapper, poet, and record producer during the 1990’s. In his adolescent years, he attended the Baltimore School for the Arts where he took acting a...

Sylvia Plath: Death, Depression, and Despair

By Emma Agripino


    Born on October 27,1932, in Boston, Massachusetts, Sylvia Plath was a 20th century American poet typically associated with the Confessional movement. Plath’s father died when Plath w...

Leonard Cohen

By Sam Goldman


    The late Leonard Cohen was a renowned Canadian poet, musician, novelist, songwriter, singer, and painter. Cohen, who was most famous for his music, first launched a career as a novelist...

Kurt Cobain: As An Outcast

By Jennifer Sixtos


    Born on February 20, 1967, American musician Kurt Donald Cobain became one of the most famous and influential artists during the Nineties. As the lead singer, songwriter, and guitarist...

Robert Bly - Challenging the World

By Zack Lynch


    Robert Elwood Bly is a renowned American poet, author, translator, and activist who was born in Lac qui Parle County, Minnesota on December 23, 1926. He grew up in a community filled with...

Thich Nhat Hanh: Peace and Prosperity

By Noah Robinson


    Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, peace activist, writer, scholar, and leader that began his journey to enlightenment at age sixteen. Throughout the years building a community...

Wendell Berry

By Margaret Boelter


    Born and Raised on a farm in Henry County, Kentucky Wendell Berry is the epitome of an agrarian writer. Both families of his parents had farmed in Henry County for over five generations....

Servants of God or Servants of Men?

By Campbell Healy

During the Victorian period in Great Britain there were many strict expectations from society. Social status determined who could marry whom or what school a person could attend, and women were...

The Clash Between Romanticism and Moral Elitism In The Picture of Dorian Gray

by Lily Green

To a member of the deeply religious and socially conservative Victorian elite, sin was something to be avoided at all costs. A lifestyle of pleasure, indulgence, and decadence was preached against...

“Are you there God? It’s me, Jane”: Struggles with Religious Conformity in Jane Eyre

by Michael Abber

There is a vast difference between unity and conformity. A firm understanding of this has likely been absent in societies throughout history, as seen by how groups of people are often almost all-too-willing...

The Tragic Necessity of Assimilation

by Jacob Kelly

Historians and scientists alike have agreed that the ability to adapt to one’s surroundings is an essential skill in the survival of any organism, singular or in a group. This adaptation can be r...

Frankenstein, and the Backlash to the Anthropocentric View of the World

by Jesus Herrera

Frankenstein, an epistolary novel in the Romantic Period, written by Mary Shelley, focuses on the pursuit of knowledge and the consequences of such pursuit. Written in the Romantic Period, the...

Examining the Social and Cultural Impact of European Colonialism in Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart

by Biniyam Asnake

Chinua Achebe’s widely acclaimed novel, Things Fall Apart, takes a post colonial look at the social and cultural consequences of arriving European missionaries to Africa and specifically Nigeria i...

Rumi: In Love and Unity

By Grace Spanbock

Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi was a 13 th century Persian theologian, poet, mystic, scholar and philosopher. Rumi’s father, an Islamic theologian and preacher, with Rumi’s mother and he, eva...

A Monster in the Closet

By Ashley Kasha

The Romantic Period brought into question what it means to define sexuality and gender. This period began in the late eighteenth century and was characterized by the reverence of the values...

Perspective and the Historical Influences in “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”

By Kevin Needham

Right before the beginning of the 19 th century, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and his friend and colleague William Wordsworth, both prominent and revered English poets, incited the Romantic Movement,...

A Malleable Mary

By Kayla Poursalimi

Throughout her life Mary Shelley was influenced by some of the most prominent intellectuals of her time; with an out spoken mother who passionately fought for women’s rights, as well a...

Lolita​: Pupae or Human

By Alegra Gurian

Vladimir Nabokov was born the 22nd of April in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1899. He was a prominent author of Russian descent and besides Lolita, Nabokov is known for his other works such...

The Psyche Behind Frankenstein: Feminism and Queer Theory

By Malaya Nordyke

Author and feminist thinker, Mary Shelley, wrote her first novel, Frankenstein, originally as a short horror story for family and friends. The English writer later published an extended novel...

Frankenstein’s Mirror of Truth

by Justin Tahara

Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus is a novel written by Mary Shelley examining the life of a scientist by the name of Victor Frankenstein who later brings life to a monster...

Biocentrism vs. Anthropocentrism in Conrad’s Heart of Darkness

by Griffin Prechter

The Industrial Revolution at the dawn of the 17th century changed the world forever, altering man’s relationship to man and his relationship to nature. Along with the possibility to mass produce g...

The Complex Feminist Ideal in the Wife of Bath’s Prologue

By Erin Ross

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Misogyny in the Canterbury Tales

By ~Rosen

Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales illuminates the ideas of the time, presented from various points of view. During the middle Ages, society was highly stratified. Bringing individuals from all walks...

Reflections On The Handmaid's Tale

By Rita Carbajal

Margret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale is a social science fiction novel which follows Offred, a woman forced to serve as a concubine, in what is recognized as the Republic of Gilead. Offred tak...

Diversity Among Immigrant Experiences in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

By Jacob Kelly

Immigrants to the United States of America are often thought of as a monolith, when in reality, they are a vastly heterogeneous group. All immigrants leave their native lands for their own unique...

Shakespeare’s Outliers

by Casey Yamamoto

The influence of Shakespeare’s writing has lasted through the centuries, providing readers insight into socio-political criticism that Shakespeare develops through his characters and their r...

Dr. Roderigo Lopez and The Merchant of Venice

by Elizabeth Seaman

Since the 13th century, when King Edward I forced all Jewish men and women to wear a yellow Star of David, Jews have been persecuted in England. In 1290, King Edward’s Edict of Expulsion o...

Medieval Contemplation vs. Renaissance Humanism in “King Lear”

by Campbell Healy

“King Lear” was written by William Shakespeare in the very early 1600’s, around the end of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I and the rise of King James I.  Queen Elizabeth I ruled her kingdom well, ...

Crime and Punishment

by Dante Moreno

Fyodor Dostoyevsky wrote Crime and Punishment between 1864 and 1866. Dostoyevsky was in financial ruin when he conceived the concept of Crime and Punishment, and had to write the book quickly,...

Pseudo-Feminism in The Canterbury Tales

by Lily Green

In the minds of some, there is nothing more dangerous than a woman who stands tall, speaks her mind, and possesses a firm notion of what she wants from herself, her peers, and the world. Such a...

Eve: A Weak Vessel or the Epitome of Strength?

By Madeline White

The controversial topic of women’s place in society is most exemplified from the

very beginning of time. From a religious perspective, the book of Genesis reveals women

to be the fall of humanity and the l...

Independence From A Gender-Influenced World

by James Fannon

Charlotte Brontë, an English novelist and poet, was an important figure in Victorian era England. One of a few female writers during the time, Brontë challenged the social structures that acted as the general normality, including s...

The Capitalist Metamorphosis

by Dan Mann
In zoological terms, a metamorphosis is the transformation a bug or amphibian under goes during growth typically resulting in a completely different creature. The Metamorphosis, is a book written by existential writer Franz Kafka....

Edward Rochester: The Ironic Hero of Jane Eyre

by Sophia M. McCullough

Literary scholars and leisure readers alike have often referred to Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre as a romantic novel, not only as a means of describing the style of writing, b...

Lady Chatterley’s Lover: The Influence of War on Sensualism and Intellectualism

by David Taylor

D.H. Lawrence originally published Lady Chatterley’s Lover in 1928 in the aftermath of World War I. Although Lawrence’s work met legal challenge under obscenity laws in the United States and United Kingdom, Lady Chatterley’s Lover...

Exposing Renaissance Discord

by Taylor A. Pecsok

The Downfall of King Lear as an Allegory Exposing Renaissance Discord

In the time of William Shakespeare, a new approach to social order was emerging: that of Renaissance Humanism. Followed by the expansion of trade,...

The Animalistic Woman of Chaucer’s England

by Jackson Guze

Informed largely by his relatively wealthy, upper-class perspective, Geoffrey Chaucer viewed his contemporary medieval society as one of constant struggle between human nature and the will of God as espoused by the Christian...

Rebellion Against Tyranny

by Crystal Eshraghi

Oppression at the hands of a tyrannical minority has for ages served as the motivation behind rebellions of the common man, fueling the essence of the commonwealth with the fervent intent to obtain their long-lost freedom...

Colonization is not my Friend

Colonization is not my Friend by Henry Haprov

      Chinua Achebe, born in Nigeria with...

"The Stranger Quote Analysis"

By Erika Venoza

“Have you no hope at all? And do you really live with the thought that when you die, you die, and nothing remains?” (pg. 117)

When Meursault was informed of his punishment for the murder he committed, he spent his day...

What is Reality?

By Roxane Aflalo

The Oxford American Dictionary defines reality as, “the world or state of things as they actually exist as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them.” However, how can one truly differentiate between “reality” and ide...

"Remember Me"

An Analysis of the Ghost’s Soliloquy in Shakespeare’s Hamlet

By Neda Dallal

The ghost of Hamlet's father gives a speech to his son about the heinous crime committed against him by King Claudius, usi...

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