Presentation on theme: "Unit 8 Being There By Anatole Broyard. Questions for Text Understanding What are the primary motivations for travelers and what is the unique approach."— Presentation transcript:
Unit 8 Being There By Anatole Broyard
Questions for Text Understanding What are the primary motivations for travelers and what is the unique approach held by some travelers today?
The primary motivation for traveling is people's boredom with their own places and their desire to see something different and new. In this sense, traveling can fulfill one's de- sire to drop familiar life and temporarily make one an onlooker, so that one can feel disengaged and impregnable. Some travelers hold a peculiar approach. They want to look for the worst, to find rationalizations for their anxiety or despair, to cover their disillusionment with labels. For them the significance of ruins has changed. Instead of the classical ruins of antiquity, now they have places that are merely "ruined". They take a positive delight in them and love awfulness for its own sake. In their eyes, awfulness is the contemporary equivalent of the exotic. It is a negative sublime, a swoon or ecstasy of spoliation.
Paragraph 1 Language Work adultery: one is always tempted to be unfaithful to one's own country. E.g. (1) Many people in public life have committed adultery. (2) He had an adulterous relationship with his wife's best friend.
Sentence Understanding Travel is like adultery. Travel is like infidelity between married people, but here one is always lured into going out to see other countries.
Paragraph 2-3 Language Work Appreciate: to be fully conscious of, to be aware of e.g. (1)I appreciate your problems. (2) I really appreciate your help.
Only while traveling can we appreciate age. Only while traveling can we recognize the value of age
Put aside: e.g. (1) Can we put that question aside for now, and come back to it later? (2) Let's put our disagreements aside and make a fresh start.
Sentence Understanding "... put aside our defenses, our anxiety, and invite regression." (Paragraph 3) we are no longer on our guard against "foreign" things and forget whatever might worry us today or tomorrow. Instead we show keen interest in what happened in the past. cultivate our hysteria" (Paragraph 3)... release our desires that have long been suppressed.
Paragraph 4-5 Language Work We're going to see in Europe everything we have eliminated or edited out of our own culture in the name of convenience We're going to see in Europe everything we have removed out of our own culture for the sake of convenience
e.g. (1) The police eliminated the possibility that it was just an accident. (2) A move towards healthy eating could help eliminate heart disease. (3) The film's 129 minutes were edited down from 150 hours of footage. (4) Much blood has been spilled in the name of religion.
At home, we impersonate ourselves... GBWO At home, we are always masked. We dare not show others our real selves.
E.g. (1)He was fined for impersonating a police officer. (2)She's the woman who impersonates the Queen on TV. (3) He does a brilliant impersonation of Prince Charles.
Question for Para4-5 What does the author mean by "roots" and "rootlessness"? By "roots" the author means the cultural or ethnic origin one can identify himself with, or what one belongs to; by "rootlessness" he means one's psychological need to be free
Paragraph 6-7 Language Work The influence of the church, the traditional pattern of life, the lack of money and leisure had all restrained curiosity until the seventeenth century, when under pressure of scientific discoveries, the physical world began to gape open. The power of the church, the traditional life style, the lack of money and spare time, all these factors had inhibited or suppressed our curiosity until the seventeenth century. Then, the world began to open to travel due to scientific discoveries.
E.g. (1)You should try to restrain your ambitions and be more realistic. (2)Growth in car ownership could be restrained by increasing taxes. (3)I was expecting him to be furious but he was very restrained. (4)Lack of space is the main restraint on the firm's expansion plans. (5)Peter's jacket gaped at the seams.
... only his is a personal crusade, an impulse to go off and fight certain obscure battles of his own spirit. --- but his battle is a personal one, motivated by a desire to leave his own country and to fight a personal spiritual struggle.
E.g. (1)They have long been involved in a crusade for racial equality. (2)a moral crusade against drugs (3)Don't go off mad.
Sentences Understanding "Something of the Crusades survive in the modern traveler" (Paragraph 7) --- In the modern traveler there is still the desire to conquer. Note that when the word" crusade" is not capitalized, it usually indicates a continual endeavor or effort for a particular cause. e. g. a crusade against dishonest advertising.
"... certain obscure battle" (Paragraph 7) a spiritual battle; it is "obscure" because you cannot see it.
Question for Para6-7 Why does the author compare travel to a personal crusade? (Paragraph 7) By definition, a crusade can be interpreted as a continual effort or struggle for a particular cause. Here the author finds that travel is, in some way, a battle to find "the profane" and to get away from boredom in modern society.
Paragraph 6-7 Language Work There is a recurrent desire to drop our lives, to simply walk out of them. --- There is a persistent desire to abandon our normal lives, and to experience something totally different. e.g.(1)For much of his life he suffered from recurrent bouts of depression. (2)He suffered all his life from a recurrent nightmare that he was trapped in a falling house. (3)The doctor told him to go to the hospital if there was a recurrence of his symptoms
The frenzied shopping of some travelers is an attempt to buy a new life. --- Some travelers go on a spending spree because they think that by doing so they can live an entirely different life
E.g. The office was a scene of frenzied activity this morning. As the evening wore on the dancing got more and more frenzied. The audience whipped themselves up into a frenzy as they waited for her to come on stage. In a moment of jealous frenzy, she cut the sleeves off all his shirts.
Sentence understanding 1) ".. father... " (Paragraph 8) --- In the Freudian theory "father" is the potential antagonist to the son, a domineering force in the family. 2) "... feeling of disengagement, of irresponsible free association. "(Paragraph 9) A feeling of freedom and release
Paragraph Language Work The places we visit are gold-plated by the sun. ---The places we visit always look so gorgeous in the sunshine. E.g. (1)Gold-plated earrings are much cheaper than solid gold ones. (2) We normally plate the car handles with nickel and then chrome.
Sentence Understanding "when life comes out of doors" (Paragraph 10) --- when we go out to travel, life seems to come back. "... with its cliches stuck in our teeth." (Paragraph 11) with its trite words and expressions being uttered again and again between our teeth
"... summery people... " (Paragraph 10) --- this is a transferred epithet, because “ summary ” usually does not go with people. A similar example is sad falls (falls that make people sad). Here the author refers to the cheerfulness of people in summer, the most agreeable season, contrary to the sadness of people in fall, winter and spring.
Paragraph 12 Language Work Because we travel for so many reasons - some of them contradictory --- travel writing is like a suitcase into which the writer tries to cram everything. Because we travel for so many reasons --- some of the reasons are very different from each other --- travel writing is like a suitcase into which the writer tries to stuff everything.
e.g.: (1)The evidence given in the trial was contradictory. (2)You say that you're good friends and yet you don't trust him. Is n't that a bit of a contradiction? (3)If you're both going to lie, at least stick to the same story and don't contradict each other!
e.g.(1) Eight children were crammed into the back of the car. (2)I managed to cram three countries into a week's business trip. (3)She's cramming for her history exam.
Sentence Understanding After enumerating some reasons for traveling, the author moves to the next related topic - travel writing. "... it's a continual tasting, the expression of a nostalgia for the particular." --- it (travel writing) enables readers to recall those particular events or people that they meet while traveling and cherish them in their memories. "the expression of a nostalgia for the particular" refers to what the author mentions in the next sentence --- traveling reminds us of our childhood. It is like a childish game. The only difference is that we played "house" when we were young, and we "play countries" when we are traveling.
Paragraph 13 Language Work The earliest travelers went to see marvels --- The earliest travelers went to see amazing things. e.g.(1)This miniature TV is the latest technological marvel from Japan. (2)It's a marvel to me how they've managed to build the tunnel so quickly. (3)We paused to marvel at the view. (4)I often marvel that some people in their advanced age are still so persistent in their academic pursuit.
Question for Paragraph 13 What, according to the author, is the main difference between the earliest travelers and today's travelers? The earliest travelers went "to see marvels, to admire the wonderful diversity of the world," and they were fascinated with foreign places at first sight; while the latest travelers go to catch a last sight of what is disappearing, to mourn "dying cultures"...
Paragraph 14 Language Work "We travel like insurance appraisers, assessing the damage" We travel like insurance appraisers, trying to see how much damage has been done to the places. Travel writing has become a quintessentially modern thing, the present regretting the past. Travel writing has become a typically modern thing, the present grieving over the past.
Paragraph Language Work Instead of the classical ruins of antiquity, we now have places that are merely" ruined. "--- Instead of those classical relics of the ancient times, we now have places that are badly destroyed. E.g.(1)Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes since antiquity. (2) Before creating this sculpture, she studied all the masterpieces of classical antiquity. (3)Under Greek law, all antiquities that are discovered in Greece belong to the government.
Philip Glazebrook seems to have visited several unappealing villages in Turkey simply for the irony of being there. … Philip Glazebrook seems to have visited several villages in Turkey which are neither attractive nor interesting. But he went there simply because he wanted to be there, not because he was attracted to those villages.
The irony of it is that the new tax system will burden those it was intended to help. The boy who fell into the river survived but the man who jumped in to save him drowned --- a tragic irony. It is ironic that although many items are now cheaper to make, fewer people can afford to buy them
Paragraph Language Work Perhaps in the future we shall have to travel like James Holman, who, after being invited out of the British navy because he had gone blind, set out in 1819 to see the world. Perhaps in the future we shall have to travel like James Holman, who, after being forced to leave the British navy because he had gone blind, started traveling in 1819 to see the world.
Since he could not see, people often invited Holman to squeeze things as a way of perceiving them Since he could not see, people often asked Holman to feel things with his hands, so that he knew what they were like.
e.g.(1)The studio is using all sorts of marketing tricks to squeeze as much profit from the movie as they can. (2)I must have put on a lot of weight over Christmas because I can just squeeze into my Jeans. (3)I'm very busy this week but I could squeeze you in at 2: 30 on Tuesday. (4)Small businesses are being squeezed by heavy taxation. (5)Bill perceived a tiny figure in the distance. (6)I perceived a note of unhappiness in her voice.