Harrison Middleton University
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Rachel Carson

Category: Shakespeare

We’re excited that you’ve joined the conversation! At HMU, we want to continue the great authors’ conversations in a contemporary context, and this blog will help us do that. We look back to Aristotle and the early philosophers who used reason and discourse to gain wisdom and now we endeavor to do the same every day.

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March 25, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Sometimes, because I love language, I like to make language lists. On a recent walk, I was thinking about the phrase “the whole ball of wax,” which turned into a game of listing phrases that mean everything…. And I quickly realized that we have a lot of ways to say everything. Each one is uniquely different, but all fun and silly.

 » Read more about: Phrases That Equal “Everything”  »

March 11, 2022

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Last week marked the end of HMU’s Winter Film Series. I cannot express how much I love this series. If you were unable to join us, never fear, we will host another film series next winter. In the meantime, the following thoughts resulted from this wonderful discussion.

As usual, leader Gary Schoepfel opened discussion with some quotations focused on the idea of Truth.

 » Read more about: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Film Discussion  »

June 18, 2021

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Have you ever attempted to restate another person’s idea in your own words? Often, we listen to a discussion and get the gist, but when asked to recreate the argument, we stumble. At Harrison Middleton University, listening is key. We try to identify logic and reasoning behind someone else’s ideas, whether the argument is presented in conversation or from a text.

 » Read more about: Try Your Hand at Translation  »

June 11, 2021

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

When looking through the Syntopicon under “F,” I find Family, Fate, and Form. Yet, the more I think about it, I want to find Forgiveness.

Merriam-Webster defines “forgive” as: to cease to feel resentment against; to give up resentment or requital; to grant relief from payment; to cancel an indebtedness. It comes from Old English (OE) “for-gifan” which had various meanings,

 » Read more about: Forgiveness  »

May 28, 2021

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Pericles, Prince of Tyre: written about 1607, by William Shakespeare
Comus”: written about 1637, by John Milton

Last week, I discussed the character of Pericles from Shakespeare’s Pericles, Prince of Tyre. This week, I will continue to explore Shakespeare’s play, but focus on Marina,

 » Read more about: Shakespeare’s Marina and Milton’s Lady  »

May 21, 2021

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s blog.

One thing that I love about Shakespeare is his ability to develop rich characters. King Lear, Hamlet, Falstaff, Henry V, Richard II: though problematic, they have vivid internal battles and complex natures. I can imagine Richard lamenting his fallen status on the beach as he recalls many sad tales of deposed kings. Or I think of Lear walking the heath,

 » Read more about: Pericles, the Problem Play  »

February 12, 2021

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Language has the power to both escalate and de-escalate tense situations. Sometimes a well-intentioned comment fits perfectly, and sometimes it causes more harm than good.

Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is often considered a love story. However, over the years, I have come to see it more as a story of war. The very first scene of the play introduces a family feud,

 » Read more about: Language Escalation  »

January 25, 2019

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Most humans are inundated with political speech, the current pace of which seems unsustainable (or at least unhealthy to me). I think this has often been the case in other civilizations too. Shakespeare gives us a great example of political speech among chaos in Julius Caesar. Though there are many layers to this play, I want to focus on the speeches given by Marcus Antonius (Mark Antony) and Marcus Brutus (Brutus) directly following Caesar’s murder.

 » Read more about: Political Speech in Julius Caesar  »

September 14, 2018

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

Shakespeare is a favorite topic of mine, and of many of our students. Recently, I read and discussed Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida. Though we didn’t have time to compare it to Chaucer’s poem Troilus and Criseyde, I wanted to spend a few moments doing just that. Before I do,

 » Read more about: Shakespeare’s Troilus Versus Chaucer’s Criseyde  »

July 20, 2018

Thanks to Alissa Simon, HMU Tutor, for today’s post.

In Democracy in America, Tocqueville warns that abstract language is like “a box with a false bottom; you may put in what ideas you please and take them out again unobserved” (258). Since I often study poetry and think about how metaphor affects us on every level, from personal and familial to political and global, I wanted to unpack this idea of Tocqueville’s.

 » Read more about: Tocqueville’s Abstract Language  »

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