Student Honors Papers

The Student Honors Papers collection represents exemplary work in English at Illinois Wesleyan University. The Ames Library is proud to archive many of these and other honors projects in Digital Commons @ IWU, the University's online archive of student, faculty and staff scholarship and creative activity.

Memory, Deconstructed and Reconstructed An Ontward Expression of an Inward Reality
by Jessica Rochford

Opening Paragraph

Lieux de Memoire, or "places of memory," are symbolic sites of national identity. Defined in Le Grand Robert de la langue franfaise, the term is attributed to French historian Pierre Nora. Nora has compiled two large project anthologies and several individual books of essays by various authors that identify and reflect upon symbolic sites of great national importance throughout France. Nora's various collections of work, span over "seven volumes, six thousand pages") and "more than one hundred and thirty authors" (Le Goff 118). The particular project of Nora's that I will focus on, titled Realms of Memory: The Construction of the French Past, includes: Volume 1: Conflicts and Divisions, Volume 2: Traditions, and Volume 3: Symbols. Here, I will examine and apply theories from Nora's third and final volume of this project, Symbols.

Thy Father and Thy Mother
by Natalie Lalagos '12

A collection of poetry by Natalie Lalagos.

exercising with my demons
by Bryn Saunders '12

A collection of poetry by Bryn Saunders.

Rural Queen
by Amanda Williams '12

A collection of poems by Amanda Williams.

water burial
by Korey Williams '12

A collection of poems by Korey Williams.

A Schema-Theoretic Approach to Agreement and Disagreement in Literary Interpretation
by Amy Fairgrieve '12

In "Interpreting the Variorium," Stanley develops his theory of reader response, one which he had already begun articulating in "Literature in the Reader," into one capable of not only describing some of the processes of reading that contribute to meaning making, but also situating the individual reader within her wider surroundings. "Interpreting the Variorium" comes at the middle of a set of essays making up Fish's book Is There a Text in this Class?, and in many ways this essay marks a transition from Fish's concern with reader response, specifically the importance of time in the process of reading, to a concern with the social forces that affect reading and the power of those forces to influence the reading process as well as agreement and disagreement between readers.

Tragic Vision in the Age of Shakespeare
by Mr. Fredman et al.

The following

essays - investigative, critical, or interpretativee -were selected from the 1964 Senior Seminar in English.

It was the primary purpose of this Seminar to penetrate into the three types of tragedy written during the Elizabethan and Jacobean periods: the de casibus, Italianate, and Domestic. Nadeleine Doran's Endeavours of Art was used as the basis for categorizing the various plays studied during the semester. Of the papers herein bound, only two of the above categories are represented: de casibus tragedy in Coriolanus, Dr. Faustus, and Bussy D'Ambois; ltalianate tragedy in The Spanish Tragedy, Othello, and The Duchess of Malfi.

The Ubermensch-Artist of Friedrich Nietsche and Thomas Mann
by Dale Whitney

There is at once a thin line and an enormous gulf between the artist-philosopher and the philosopher-artist. Where one spreads out his ideas in a dazzling and often bewildering array, the other builds a framework with them and constructs the fictional experiences of a latent philosophy. Where Nietzsche exultantly screams an aphorism, Mann constructs a novel.

George Elliot: A Conflict of Heart and Mind
by Janet Polsgrove '75

It is the purpose of this paper to explore this continuing conflict within George Elliot and the various resolutions of the conflict which she achieved.

Only Dull Readers Escape: Framing Humor and Materiality in Stephen Crane's The Black Riders and other lines
by Andrew J. Dorkin

In this essay, I attempt to reorient the scholarship of Stephen Crane’s first book of poems, The Black Riders and other lines (1895), towards understanding the text’s affective purpose. I begin by illuminating the subtle but pervasive humor of The Black Riders, a critically underdeveloped, but nonetheless major, component of the reader’s experience; too often, it seems, this humor is marginalized by the assumption that Crane’s verse consists primarily of philosophical aphorisms meant to be taken seriously. After orienting my reader to the humor of the lines, I use Catherine Emmott’s Contextual Frame Theory as a model for the way readers engage the text; this theory, as I have applied it, accounts for the way our interpretive processes are shaped by our own “contextual frames,” which organize the information we receive from the text and the assumptions we make about it. Having established a frame of The Black Riders that recognizes its humor and, consequently, our own laughter response, I contend that we as readers will be primed to find ourselves directly subject to the condemnation of insensitive laughter contained in the text. The succeeding frame of The Black Riders as possessing both a subtle humor and a remarkable degree of reader interaction primes us to accept Jerome McGann’s claim about the “typographical wit” in Crane’s lines; this, in turn, establishes a new frame of typographical and material awareness that integrates the effects McGann has articulated and moves beyond them, ultimately incorporating another presentational feature, the original page turns.