[tags: The Garden of Forking Paths Essays]

Analyzing the short story “The Landlady”

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I complained to God in so many words: “Here I was, the wounded representative of the negro race in our struggle to be accounted free and equal with the dominating whites!” And God was amused; my prayer did not ring true with Him. I would try again. And then God said, “Have you not done the same thing? Remember this one and that one, people whom you have slighted or avoided or treated less considerately than others because they were different superficially, and you were ashamed to be identified with them. Have you not been glad that you are not more colored than you are? Grateful that you are not black?” My anger and hate against the landlady melted. I was no better than she was, nor worse for that matter. . . . We were both guilty of the sin of self-regard, the pride and the exclusiveness by which we cut some people off from ourselves.

This is what Katz, who teaches law at the University of Pennsylvania, calls “avoision”–behavior a little too fishy to seem like simple avoidance of illegality but not so obviously illegal as to constitute clear-cut evasion. Avoision covers those acts which lie in the awkward middle, and Katz sees the potential for avoision everywhere in the modern world. Imagine, for example, a tourist from a third-world country who comes to America and decides, at the last minute, that she wants to stay here. She then makes a series of provocative statements about her country which render her unwelcome at home and thereby qualify her for political asylum. Or what about a pornographer who, worried about running afoul of decency laws with his collection of highly explicit photographs, decides to put them in a book entitled “Sex in Marriage,” together with long, windy essays on the future of marriage. The shoemaker, the tourist, and the pornographer all adhere to the form of the law, but they violate its spirit: they have exploited a loophole. Is what they are doing right? Should they be allowed to get away with it?

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In this essay I am going to look at the effect created by Arthur Conan Doyle and H G Wells in three short stories, analysing how this effect has added to the plot, setting and atmosphere.

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In this essay/analysis I will go through some of the underlying themes of the novel, that create it more than just a story about some kid in New York....

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But not everybody followed Hanway's argument. The eminent intellectual Dr Samuel Johnson, a devotee of tea, so disagreed with Hanway's 1757 essay that he published a hilariously satirical review of it in the Literary Magazine, a monthly journal. Johnson started of by admitting that Hanway should expect little justice, since Johnson himself was 'a hardened and shameless tea-drinker, who has for twenty years diluted his meals with only the infusion of this fascinating plant, whose kettle scarcely has time to cool, who with Tea amuses the evening, with Tea solaces the midnights, and with Tea welcomes the morning'. He then poured scorn on Hanway's suggestion that women are less beautiful than they once were, before considering the claim that tea-drinking has led to an increase in nervous disorders. Johnson suggested that rather than blaming tea, one ought to blame the 'general langour [that] is theeffect of general luxury, of general idleness', because those who are idle get no exercise, and are thus susceptible to nervous disorders. He argued that there is only a link with tea-drinking because tea-drinking is common among those who are already 'idle and luxurious'. Johnson was also perceptive enough to note that often tea-drinking was just an excuse for bringing people together: 'a pretence for assembling to prattle, for interrupting business' - but unlike tea's critics, who saw such gatherings as dangerous (particularly among the working classes), Johnson saw no harm in it. Thus he has much in common with many modern tea-drinkers, who delight in getting together with a cuppa for a gossip and a giggle.

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In 1758 an anonymous author entered the debate with a pamphlet entitled The Good and Bad Effects of Tea Consider'd, which very much supported Hanway's arguments. The pamphlet argued that while tea-drinking was acceptable for the middle and upper-classes, it should be prevented among 'persons of an inferior rank and mean abilities'. Although his argument started reasonably, pointing out that a cup of tea alone was an inadequate breakfast for those who had to do hard work, it soon descended into a tirade based, like Hanway's original essay, on the belief that the social habits of the poor must be controlled for the sake of the rich. He claimed that the practice of tea-drinking in the afternoon among working class women meant that they were 'neglecting their spinning knitting etc spending what their husbands are labouring hard for, their children are in rags, gnawing a brown crust, while these gossips are canvassing over the affairs of the whole town, making free with the good name and reputation of their superiors.' He believed that it also encouraged these 'artful husseys' to drink spirits and to complain about their husbands, and urged innocent people to hold out against their malign influence. Unsurprisingly, this author was set against the practice of providing servants with an allowance for tea.


Landlady - Essay by Tank842

In 1757 the philanthropist Jonas Hanway published an essay on the effects of tea drinking, 'considered as pernicious to health, obstructing industry and impoverishing the nation'. Published in the form of 25 letters written to two wealthy female friends, Hanway dismissed the claim that tea could cure scurvy, and claimed instead, like Wesley, that it caused 'paralytic and nervous disorders'. He was particularly concerned about its effect on women: 'How many sweet creatures of your sex, languish with weak digestion, low spirits, lassitudes, melancholy, and... nervous complaints? Tell them to change their diet, and among other articles leave off drinking tea, it is more than probable the greatest part of them will be restored to health.' He also appealed to their vanity - insisting that due to women drinking tea 'there is not quite so much beauty in this land as there was'. But more than just injurious to women,Hanway believed that tea-drinking risked ruining the nation, because of its increasing prevalence among the working classes, and associated the drinking of tea with the drinking of gin. He argued that the poor could ill-afford to spend their money on tea, claiming that 'those will have tea who have not bread', and that children born to poor mothers were dying because their mothers were spending all their money on tea, and drinking this 'liquid fire' while breast-feeding. This, he claimed, had led to a decline in numbers in the workforce, which he believed was obstructing agriculture and manufacturing, and would leave the country open to attack because there would not be enough fit men for the army. Thus Hanway urged the rich to give up tea drinking, in the hope that their example would be followed by the poor, on whose labour Britain depended. Much of Hanway's essay is then based on the assumption that the injurious habits of the poor must be controlled, not for the sake of poor themselves, but because a decline in their numbers or would ultimately be damaging to the interests of the rich.

Foreshadowing in The Landlady Complete the following chart with information from the short story. List the example in the first column and what event it

PARAGRAM (Greek, "letter joke"): A sub type of pun involving similarities in sound. E examples and discussion under pun. essay types and their examples of onomatopoeia