Friday, March 14, 2008

To evaluate and to be evaluated

To evaluate
It's harder than I thought. We had this guideline that goes on forever, it's hard to evaluate while our peers are doing the microteaching, and it's even harder to to do it after they are done because we would have forgotten half of what they were teaching. I now have a profound respect for lecturers who evaluate their students during the practical. It's indeed hard to keep up.

To be evaluated
When all eyes are on you, judging you and waiting for you to screw up, while you are doing your microteaching, you can't help but feeling nervous although you are of high confidence. On the other hand, knowing that you're evaluated pushes you to the max to do your best - not giving anyone a chance to see your flaws. I'd accept to be evaluated any time.

Why a Streetcar Named Desire?

I just don't get it. Maybe its the lusty Blanche. But it couldn't be a vehicle for Blanche to fulfill her sexual desires. The play should be called a Streetcar Named Downfall, that'd would be like, so duh, that's exactly what the story is about. Maybe Tennessee Williams wanted to be subtle. Anyway, I am still trying to find a connection between the title and the theme of the story. By the way, there is one part in scene 1 where Stanley asks Stella to catch the meat. It obviously shows the caveman complex 'me-man-me-bring-meat', but in the analysis at, this throwing meat activity has sexual connotation. I admit that I can be very dirty minded, but, not in this case. So, if anyone is more dirty minded than me, please fill me in, okay.

30 of pain and pleasure

I have just finished reading Mahesh Dattani's 30 Days in September. And I have to say that he is really one bold man to convey the theme of sexual abuse and incest. Yes, we do know that sexual abuse is a painful experience, not to mention traumatic, but Mahesh boldy inserts one element that nobody dares to speak of. This my friend, is the PLEASURE that these abused children do feel. Mala portrays the traumatized woman who because of the recurrent abuse, her brain circuit is programed to actually like to be abused, making her psychological unable to love people genuinely without getting abuse sexually. This pleasure is indeed a taboo in society for we would have not expected that sexually abused children actually enjoy it. This is of course, although sickening, it is very prevalent issue in the world today, where paedophiles seem to be cropping up as we speak.

When too much drama kills

Cleopatra thinks Antony is going to be furious with her for abandoning him. Cleopatra feigns death so that Antony would not be furious. But plan goes wrong, Antony tried to kill himself. He died in Cleopatra's arms. Cleopatra kills herself.
This is similar to the story of the boy who cried wolf. Inject a little bit of drama, everything goes wrong. Sometimes I think people during Cleopatra and Antony's time are lacking of rational thought. If only Cleopatra could just face the angry Antony, everything would be okay. If only Antony didn't try to kill himself, he would still be alive living together with his lover.
I think this is a lesson to be learned by everyone. Yes, we would do need an ounce of drama to spice up our life, but do get a grip, okay?

Monday, February 25, 2008

"There's beggary in the love that can be reckoned"

Once upon a time, during the reign of the Rome triumvirs according to Shakespeare's imagination, a brave captain called Antony said this line to the Cleopatra he loved so deep. Why? His love is so great, no words in any language in the world can describe it.
Today, men still can't say how much they love their partner. Why? Not because there's no language can describe it, rather because they are afraid of COMMITMENT. Period. Thanks to Antony, they have the excuse NOT to say that three small words that women love to hear. Because, why? "There's no words to express my love for you". And in truth, there ARE NO words really. We as decendants of Venus,are just willing to believe it, although we secretly cringe that it is far from the truth.
Is it really that hard to say how much you love someone? For me, it's either you love them and are able to proclaim it, or you don't and that's why you can't say it.
But then again, in the world today, there are many Antonys who love their partner more than life. Just like Antony, they can't express it with words, rather with their credit cards. And I would prefer this.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Everyday Ironies

Every drama class brings us one step closer to understanding Oedipus Rex. First we, learnt that Sophocles is the godfather of drama, hence the jabbing of eyes and incests in Oedipus Rex. Yesterday, we learn about dramatic irony. Not just your everyday irony but a dramatic one. Or I might say, LOADS of dramatic irony in the play. Like, everything Oedipus claims, is oh-so-the-other-way-round. If only he gets a penny every time he say ironic things.
Like our life, we DO encounter ironies. It happens all the time, to everyone. For example, the not so physically endowned people will always get the hotties, and the other way round. Most of the time people will lose their new mobile phones, rather their old junk. When you thought you nailed something, you will always be greeted with disappointments. But when you think of the worse, than only the good things will come.
Ironic huh?

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Are our fates written in stone?

The Oedipus Rex play got me thinking. Are our destiny and fate are set and written in stone? That we can't never ever change it no matter how hard we try? That it will always come back to you, if not today, someday? When Oedipus's parents find out that their son is going to kill his father and sleep with his mother, they took actions, inhumaned actions so that the prophecy won't come true. They figure, getting rid of the son is the only way to get rid of the prophecy. But along the way, the messenger just can't kill the baby; thus Oedipus lives. Then, when Oedipus has grown up and finds out about the prophecy, he too wants to avoid from killing his father (which he thought was his father). So he ran away to a far far away place. Surprise, surprise, by avoiding his fate, he unknowingly fulfilled his fate when he accidentally kills his father and marries his mother. So I guess what Sophocles is trying to say here is that, no matter how far you run away from your fate, it will always come back to bite you in the rear end someday.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Sophocles, the Drama King

I think Sophocles is the God of Dramatic events. And kind of sick in the way he can think of incest as one of his main ideas in Oedipus Rex. Initially, I thought that the play is going to be a really sick one, because I thought that the king is going to kill his father in order to sleep with his mother. I shouldn't have jumped into conclusions. After reading the play, then I knew what was actually going on. He didn't know it was his father that he was going to kill, nor did he know that it was his own mother that he was going to marry. Now that's a motherload of tragedy. And jabbing his own eyes with pins? Ouch. With an excellent and vicariuos story line like this, can any other plays be more dramatic than this? Kudos to Sophocles for producing the most tragic play ever read or seen by mankind.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Going Deeper

Dr Edwin's class last Wednesday really gave me some insights about the world of plays and theater. Like, I always thought that early plays only served as a source of entertainment, due to the lack in advancement of technology. But I never knew that the plays had religious purposes. I didn't understand why men would dressed up as women to play women roles, and now I know why. And how the Greeks are gods of dramatic plays. Then came the Brecht era where the plays had no drama, and not even a climax. Just pure intelligence for audience to figure out. In my opinion, I'd choose dramatic tragedy over plays that makes me think. But being a student of literature, I can't escape the fact that I DO have to use my brain to figure out all the plays that are assigned. Go figure.

Of Drama and Literature

I like to watch dramas on TV. So I thought it'd be the same with the dramas we are studying for Teaching of The Language of Drama. I had never been so wrong. It's much more complicated, and you actually HAVE to study it, not just reading the scripts. Heck, even reading the plays are tough. But that doesn't mean I loath it. In fact, when Dr Edwin gave us the play titles that we are going to study for the next semester, I was looking forward to studying them. Most of the plays - Oedipus Rex, Antony and Cleopatra, and The Importance of Being Ernest are plays that I heard all the time throughout my life, but had no idea what are they about, nor had I the initiative to check it out. Now, I have the opportunity to study it and deepen my knowledge in the world of literature. And I have to prepare myself mentally to swallow its complicatedness and alien terms and languages. I had to.