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  • [book pages flipping].

  • Hello once again students and welcome to

  • The Close Reading Cooperative, the podcast

  • in literary analysis for English majors.

  • I'm Christopher Hanlon of Eastern Illinois University.

  • I'm C. C. Wharram, same place and today

  • we're going to talk about a poem, which

  • is actually a song from Montreal, Canada, a place

  • where the poets often transform into singer/songwriters.

  • You think of people like Leonard Cohen.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). There's Leonard Cohen,

  • there's other Canadians like K.D. Lang.

  • (Dr. Wharram). K.D. Lang.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Bill Shatner.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Bill Shatner, he actually

  • has an album, and the group I want to talk about is

  • Arcade Fire, a group of Montreal musicians who

  • have a new album out called, "The Suburbs",

  • and a song from that is called "Sprawl II".

  • You know the song?

  • (Dr. Hanlon). You have played

  • it for me and, you know, I like your music okay, yeah.

  • (Dr. Wharram). But the song is called

  • "Sprawl II" because sprawl is such a big

  • topic it needs two songs.

  • So it's "Sprawl I"--we're not going to talk

  • about--"Sprawl II", it's over the borders, and the lines I'd

  • like to talk about are from the chorus and

  • they go something like this.

  • [read lyrics].

  • So you've heard that, you saw it on the screen.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). I hear a literary device.

  • (Dr. Wharram). What's the literary

  • device that you see?

  • (Dr. Hanlon). I hear a literary device,

  • I think I see a "simile".

  • (Dr. Wharram). Simile is indeed correct.

  • Now the first part of good close reading is to identify the

  • actual device, which you've done with a plum.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Thank you.

  • (Dr. Wharram). And the simile is?

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Well the simile--like

  • a metaphor--consists of a vehicle and a tenor, right?

  • (Dr. Wharram). That's correct.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). I think what we've

  • got here is shopping malls being like

  • mountains after mountains.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Yup, mountains beyond

  • mountains, so the simile is like mountains beyond

  • mountains, and that is describing the tenor,

  • which is the shopping malls.

  • And basically you've got it taken apart according to the

  • formula that you and Suzie Park so graciously gave

  • us in a previous podcast.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). So we've got tenor:

  • shopping malls; vehicle: mountains after

  • mountains, mountains beyond mountains.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Now, the question is,

  • what do you do with that?

  • Once you start taking it apart, what is the effect of saying

  • that shopping malls are like, or yeah,

  • are like mountains beyond mountains.

  • When you hear the phrase "like mountains beyond mountains",

  • what sort of ideas come to your mind?

  • What sort of...

  • (Dr. Hanlon). I just sort of--to tell

  • you the truth--I just sort of picture something.

  • I mean I just sort of picture scenes that

  • I've seen on television.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Like alpine scenes,

  • or television sort of scenes.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Yeah, like photographs,

  • Ansel Adams paintings.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Crane shots that look

  • from mountains beyond mountains.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Yeah, yeah.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Okay, so you're looking

  • for something that looks like it's sort of a

  • painter-like, or a filmic sort of rendition of something.

  • Yes, mountains beyond mountains, it does give you

  • that sense of an aesthetic sort of quality, yes.

  • Is there anything else that comes to mind when you think of

  • mountains beyond mountains?

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Well, if the mountains

  • are beyond the mountains, I guess I

  • think of a valley and I think of the trough

  • of that valley, you know, in between the mountains,

  • kind of you're caught in between.

  • (Dr. Wharram). It's very much a

  • geographical or a physical geological, perhaps

  • sort of a, sort of a description, right.

  • So we basically have kind of almost two choices

  • here that you can sort of make.

  • Are we talking about sort of an aesthetic, sort of painterly

  • rendition or a filmic rendition of something,

  • or are we talking about a sort of

  • physical geographical qualities or something?

  • Now you can build an interpretation of this

  • particular passage from Arcades Fire's "Sprawl II",

  • on either one, or you can probably do it with both.

  • And what sort of like argument could you make about what this

  • song is trying to impart, when you sort

  • of bring these ideas together.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Well, you know when I look...

  • (Dr. Wharram). I'm asking, I'm asking

  • Dr. Hanlon to do some pretty tough

  • thinking, on the spot.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Well, when I look

  • at the words that you've read to us, to tell

  • you the truth, I don't get the sense that what is being related

  • to me here is a beautiful scene, that the shopping mall is a

  • painterly beautiful place.

  • Maybe it is in a way, but I do get the sense that kind of

  • entrapped feel, that sense that I'm caught some place, almost as

  • if between two ridges or something like that.

  • (Dr. Wharram). "Dead shopping malls,

  • Rise like mountains beyond...".

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Did I get it right?

  • Did I get it right?

  • (Dr. Wharram). Well, I think that there's

  • a way of actually bringing the two of them together.

  • I mean basically, it's not necessarily in the aesthetics of

  • beauty, as being something that's beautiful, but it's the

  • sort of aesthetics of you know, being trapped.

  • I mean the two of them can come together, the trappedness,

  • the fact that basically, what's being replaced in your sort of

  • environment, or your ecological sort of center is mountains are

  • being replaced by dead shopping malls.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). And in a way,

  • shopping malls actually can be beautiful.

  • I mean, you know, the glittering storefront is

  • very attractive in its own way.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Yeah, I suppose you're right.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). I know, we're not

  • supposed to say that, right.

  • We're supposed to be, you know, liberal arts

  • people but you know.

  • (Dr. Wharram). True, but...

  • (Dr. Hanlon). And entrapping.

  • (Dr. Wharram). But not if they're dead.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Not if they're dead,

  • that's true.

  • (Dr. Wharram). And I think that we've

  • missed out on that adjective, "dead"

  • shopping malls, because that word "dead" sort of changes

  • everything a little bit too.

  • Because it makes it sound like they were once sort of an

  • organic part of this ecology and now they've become dead,

  • they're piling up one upon the other like bodies

  • during an infestation.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Like sediment.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Like sediment,

  • oh there you go.

  • How are mountains formed; in the same way.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). I was thinking of the vehicle,

  • that let me say that.

  • (Dr. Wharram). That's very nice.

  • So you can see, you can start to make an argument about the

  • complex way that Arcade Fire used the simplest, the simplest

  • of literary devices, the simile.

  • The one that's easiest to locate because it's got a "like" or an

  • "as", you see those two words, you identify it.

  • But it's more than just sort of saying, it's a simile.

  • It's starting to create an argument and recognizing

  • the ramifications of that device.

  • Once you start to take it apart and look at how language is sort

  • of making this point in a complex way.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Every simile, every metaphor

  • is an argument about reality.

  • It's a proposition, isn't it?

  • (Dr. Wharram). That's nicely put.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Thank you,

  • I do it for a living.

  • (Dr. Wharram). That's enough.

  • (Dr. Hanlon). Okay, I think that's enough

  • probably for this week for The Close Reading Cooperative,

  • we'll see you next week students.

  • (Dr. Wharram). Come again.

  • [no dialogue].

[book pages flipping].

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シミレ (Simile)

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    阿多賓 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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