Monday, November 7, 2011

Final Essay

Hello All,

For this post, describe the following areas as they relate to your final essay.  You may change your minds at any time; this is just to let me know we are all on topic.

1.  What department/program/club/event are you using as your focus?  Who is your audience?  The more specific you can make your audience, the more effective your essay will be.
2.  On what advertising form/medium will your essay focus?  A poster?  A website?  A flier?  A commercial?
3.  What are the strengths/weaknesses of the current advertisement?
4.  Which symbols/archetypes are you proposing the department/program emphasize?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Marketing and Advertising

Hello All,

For this post, watch the two Chipotle videos (Back to the Start and Abandoned), and answer the following questions:

1.  What message is the advertisement trying to portray?  What emotions/concepts does the advertisement give Chipotle?
2.  What symbols and archetypes does the advertisement use to portray that message?

Friday, October 28, 2011

October 31: Primordial Chaos

Hello All,

Describe the most memorable example you see this weekend of Eliade's concept of Primordial Chaos.

Have fun!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Film Analysis

Hello All,

As we discussed in class, our readings present archetypes in three different contexts:

In Ariadne's Clue, Anthony Stevens divides and classifies archetypal objects and images;
In The Myth of the Eternal Return, Mircea Eliade analyzes specific archetypal processes;
In The Hero and the Outlaw, Margaret Mark and Carol Pearson divide and classify archetypal personas.

For The Myth of the Eternal Return, the following archetypal concepts have the most relevance for your film analysis:

Celestial Models
Profane/Sacred Time and Space
Symbolism of the Center
Road to the Center
Regeneration of Time (which is comprised of the following steps...)
Abolition of Past Time (of profane time and space)
Restoration of Primordial Chaos
Repetition of Cosmogonic Act

The introduction to this essay is due Friday.  For this blog entry, list the film you plan on analyzing as well as the symbols/archetypes (choose two to four different examples) on which you plan to focus.

Friday, October 21, 2011


For this post, analyze one name from the film Sunshine

1.  What is its etymology (its word history)?  What does the word mean?
2.  Are there any mythological figures with the same name?  Are there any historical figures with the same name?
3.  Why is this name apt for this character?

Capa (or Kappa)
Pinbacker (or pin-backer)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Archetypes and Repetition / Regeneration of Time

Hello All,

For this post, watch the video for Lambchop's "Is a Woman," and then explain how the video (not the song) exemplifies one of Eliade's concepts from The Myth of the Eternal Return.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Post for October 17

Hello All,

For this post, research and explain the history (both personal and etymological) behind your name.

For example, "Matthew" comes from the Hebrew  Mattathyah meaning "gift of Jehovah," and Matthew was one of the 12 apostles in the Bible and wrote the first book of the New Testament.

I wasn't named after any relative, but apparently, my father was inspired by the character of Marshal Matt Dillon from the television western Gunsmoke.

Those are the "celestial models" behind my first name.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Body Paragraph

Hello All,

Post one of your excellent body paragraphs (for the Song Analysis Essay) here!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Song Analysis

Hello All,

Post your song analysis thesis here!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Post for Friday, 9/23

Hello All,

As we discussed in class on Wednesday, the thesis for the in-class essays must make your position clear, and it should carry with it implied (or explicit) reasons for support.

For this post, craft a thesis statement you could use if you were writing an essay in response to the following quote:

"Government is an unnecessary evil. Human beings, when accustomed to taking responsibility for their own behavior, can cooperate on a basis of mutual trust and helpfulness."

      --Fred Woodworth

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Post for 9/16

On page 42 of Ariadne's Clue, Anthony Stevens writes,

"Many of the symbolic rituals devised by our ancestors rose out of the anxieties that inevitably afflicted human beings living in the environmental circumstances in which our species evolved [. . . ] Our capacity to find symbolical means of dealing with these fears is one of the most striking characteristics of mankind.  When in need, we seek symbolical expression as well as practical fulfillment of those needs." 

For this blog post, describe one symbolic object you have (or used to have) to help you deal with a fear.  It could be a good-luck charm you carry, a pair of lucky socks you used to wear for the "big game," or the stuffed animal you used to need in order to get to sleep at night.

For example, I carry a medal of the Virgin of Guadalupe and a Turkish evil eye bead in my car in order to keep me and my family safe from all the hazards of the road . . .

Monday, September 12, 2011

Introductions (First Day of Class)

Hello All,

For our first entry, post a brief introduction about yourself: your major, career plans, favorite novel, and so on.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Critique of Campus Webpage

Hello All,

For this post, critique a CSUB webpage. Discuss its strengths and weaknesses, and be sure to point out any archetypes it uses effectively as well as additional archetypes it should have included.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Advertising and You

For this post, describe and explain one advertisement that has appealed to you on an emotional, psychological level.

For example, one commercial that sticks in my head is the Geico caveman commercial, especially the one where the caveman is working in an office and then runs into the street, rips off his tie and dress shirt, and goes bowling with his fellow cavemen. I have no patience for meetings or formality, so this commercial reflects my desire for creativity and freedom. If I were looking to Mark and Pearson's book for the accurate classification, I would say this commercial reflects the Outlaw and Magician. The caveman both breaks the rules and makes something "true," even if that truth is just a night out bowling (and I don't even bowl)...

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Hero and the Outlaw (1-47)

As we discussed in class, our last text will probably be the easiest (and most enjoyable) for you to read. Our first two texts have given us a solid background in archetypes, and in The Hero and the Outlaw, Mark and Pearson apply that information to a specific context: advertising.
For this first post of the text, read the first 47 pages and find a quote that helps answer the following question: "How do archetypes affect our consciousness?"
Then, briefly skim the rest of the book to get a sense of how Mark and Pearson structure their analysis.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Beginning the Film Essay

Hello All,

For this post, list the archetypal figures, places, and/or events you will be discussing in your film analysis. You should have at least two and probably no more than five.

Be sure to include the name of the film in your response.

Friday, May 6, 2011


Eliade's archetype of the Eternal Return manifests through three stages:

1. Abolition of Past Time
2. Restoration of Primordial Chaos
3. Repetition of the Cosmogonic Act

1. In terms of Danny Boyle's Sunshine, Abolition of Past Time occurs through the flight itself. Because the Icarus is flying toward the sun, there is no night; there is only a constant day. Time, as such, has stopped; there is only this day, this now. This can be overwhelming, a frustration Mace expresses in his session with Dr. Searle: "It's the time."

3. Repetition of the Cosmogonic Act occurs when Capa triggers the payload and reignites the sun (or, as Eliade describes, "rekindles the fire"). In this case, Capa literally restores the center of all life, of the universe as we live it.

2. Your assignment is to describe moments that would relate to Restoration of Primordial Chaos. In other words, what symbolizes Chaos, Invasion of the Dead, Abolition of Norms/Overturning of Values, or Indeterminate Unity (Eliade has another category of Primordial Chaos--sexual excess--but that does not apply to our film).

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Sunshine (for May 6)

Hello All,

Going back to the idea of celestial models, provide a brief description and analysis of one of the following names from Sunshine:

Icarus (the name of the ship)
Corazon (Cori)
Cassandra (Cassi)

Where does the name originate? What does it mean? Why does this character have this name?

This is the exception to one of my earlier rules: you may use Wikipedia to help you with this etymology (word history).

Monday, May 2, 2011

Post for May 4

Hello All,

One of the key components of Eliade's analysis is the idea of chaos and indeterminate unity: forms being broken and combined.

For this post, describe one costume you have worn--either for Halloween, a pageant, or for another important day-- in which you became two people.

For example, the last time I dressed up for Halloween, I painted my face to look like a skull. Apparently, because I am fairly tall and was dressed in black, it looked like a skull floating down the street, and I scared a couple of people by accident . . . I was both the living and the dead.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Celestial Models

Hello All,

For this entry, describe the history of your name. Why did you parents give you this name? What does your name signify/mean?

For example, my last name, "Woodman," means that sometime in the past, an ancestor of mine was named for his occupation: he was a logger or wood distributor.

My first name, "Matthew" is Biblical and in Hebrew means "gift of God." However, the family story is that my father chose the name because of a character on the television show Gunsmoke: Marshall Matt Dillon.

In this case, my name has a number of competing "celestial models."

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Myth of the Eternal Return, 2-48

Hello All,

As I warned you at the beginning of the quarter, Eliade's text will be the most difficult of our three texts to read: his tone (vocabulary and syntax) is the most formal and academic of our authors, and he refers to many obscure (to us) figures from religions and mythologies that span the globe (and history).

Because of this, the most effective strategy (for us in this class) for reading this work is to focus on the core concepts and the relationships between those concepts. Don't get caught up in trying to decipher and research each and every name he references; instead, read with a highlighter or pencil, and annotate (underline or mark) the sentences or passages that you think are most important in terms of the overall ideas.

For example, one key concept Eliade defines and illustrates is that of the Center (and Symbolism of the Center). The Center is a physical place that represents the core/essence/heart of an idea or system. For example, for Christians, a Center would be Jerusalem; for Muslims, a Center would be Mecca. However, these centers can also be secular. For example we could discuss a library as representing a Center of knowledge (we would thus look for the "best" library as the most representative of this center) or Hollywood as the Center of entertainment.

This blog post will have two components:

1. Find a quote from pages 2-48 of The Myth of the Eternal Return that you find interesting/important/thought-provoking.

2. Describe one Center that is important to you and your world.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Homework for Monday, April 18

Hello All,

For this blog, post one body paragraph of your literary (song) analysis.

For an example and some advice, see an analysis of Tom Waits's "Whistlin' Past the Graveyard."

Take care!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

In-Class Post for April 13

Hello All,

For this post, analyze one artwork from Walter Martin and Paloma Munoz's series Islands.

In your analysis, be sure to use an example of each of the following types of sentences:


Friday, April 8, 2011

Post for April 11

As we discussed on the first few days of class, Carl Jung is one of the first to define the concept of archetypes, and Anthony Stevens refers to him throughout Ariadne's Clue, especially Jung's idea of the "transcendent function of symbols [...] part of the autonomous developmental principle operating throughout life, which he called individuation [... which] also imples becoming one's own self. We could, therefore, translate individuation as 'coming to selfhood' or 'self-realization'" (as cited on p. 77).

For this post, describe one symbol that has been a part of your process of individuation.

For example, one symbol that has been essential for me is that of the book, which symbolizes the idea of knowledge, expression, and freedom. I usually take a book with me wherever I go, and it functions as both a spark for my imagination and an extension of my self; one way I have of describing myself is to list the books that are most important to me or, conversely, the books I am currently reading.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Post for April 2-3

Hello All,

In our reading for Friday, Stevens argues that a primal motivating cause of our symbols and archteypes is fear:

"many of the symbolic rituals devised by our ancestors arose out of the anxieties that inevitably afflicted human beings living in the environmental circumstances in which our species evolved and lifed for most of its existence. Fears that the vegetative forces of regeneration might wear out and the crops fail gave rise to the fertility rituals, sacrifices of animals and the first fruits, etc., practised by human communities all over the world. Fears that the winter sostice might not mark the end of the sun's withdrawal over the horizon and the beginning of its return explain the ubiquitous existence of solstice rituals, saturnalisa, orgies, and so on. Omnipresent fears of predatory animals and hostile tribal neighbors generated teh surpernatural strength and magical powers of myriad heroes and hero-gods, enabling them to triumph over the monsters, snake-haired medusas, ogres, ghouls, and terrible chimeras which have horrified the imagination since the beginning of anthropological time. While the fear of sickness, spells, bad magic, demons, and jealous ancestral spirits generated the need for shamans, wizards, medicine men, white witches, adn wise women, with their amulets, masks, drums, ecstatic trances, and magic flights necessaery to counter the evils lying in constant wait for us. Our capacity to find symbolical means of dealing with these fears is one of the most striking characteristics of humankind." (42)

One medium for our modern exorcism of these fears is through film, so for this post, describe one film you find especially frightening.

For example, the last film to give me a scare was The Blair Witch Project. I used to go camping quite a bit with my friends, and this film reminded me of the fears of getting lost and of the noises one can't help but hear in the darkness: What was that? Is it getting closer?

Monday, March 28, 2011

1st Post: Spring 2011

Hello All, In his section "The Logic of Symbols," Anthony Stevens describes a study Calvin Hall and Vernon Nordby conducted in which they collected and categorized over 50,000 dreams: "The typical dreams reported involved predatory animals, flying, falling, being pursued by hostile strangers, landscapes, sex, getting married and having children, taking examinations or undergoing some similar ordeal, travelling (whether on foot, horseback, car, aeroplane, or ship), swimming or being in the water, watching fires, and being confined in an underground space. They concluded: 'These typical dreams express the shared concerns, preoccupations and interests of all dreamers. They may be said to constitute the universal constants of the human psyche'" (as cited on p. 20).

For your first blog, describe one of these universal dreams you have experienced recently.

For example, I recently had the dream where I was swimming in the ocean on a starless night; the water was pitch black, and it felt like I was going to be swallowed by the sea, as if the water itself were some sort of monster. I kept anticipating something pulling me down, but nothing happened: I just kept swimming . . .

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Post for March 4

For this post, just name the department, club, or instructor's homepage you plan on critiquing for your final essay.

In-class post: March 2

Hello All,

For this post, critique a webpage associated with an instructor, a program, a department, or a club. Explain the webpage's strengths and weaknesses, and be sure to address whether or not the site uses archetypes effectively.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Feb 28

Hello All,

Mark and Pearson divide and classify archetypal figures into twelve categories:

The Innocent embodies the childlike characteristics of optimism and being naive ("Initially, the innocent has a child-like quality of naivete and a simple even unconscious dependence" 55);
The Explorer embodies the search for a better world that will fit and reflect one's inner hopes and desires and appears often in fairy tales ("The explorer is the simple desire to hit the open road and to be in the wild, wide-open spaces of nature to experience the joy of discovery" 72);
The Sage is one who uses intelligence to understand the world ("Their faith is in the capacity of humankind to learn and grow in ways that allow us to create a better world" 88);
The Hero saves the day and brings triumph for all ("The hero wants to make the world a better place" 106);
The Outlaw refuses to conform ("Finding their identity outside the current social structure, such outlaws are faithful to deeper, truer values than the prevailing ones. Such outlaws are romantic figures ready to disrupt society that has succumbed to tyranny, repression, conformity, or cynicism" 123);
The Magician uses 'magical' powers to influence others or to transform their surroundings to their advantage ("Most basic to the magician is the desire to search out the fundamental laws of how things work and to apply these principles to getting things done" 140);
The Regular Guy/Gal (Everyman/woman) has no outstanding noticeable characteristics; s/he blends in and is 'normal' like everyone else ("The regular guy/gal demonstrates the virtues of simply being an ordinary person just like others" 165);
The Lover is one who uses beauty to attract others ("The lover archetype governs all sorts of human love, from parental love to friendship to spiritual love, but it is most important to romantic love" 178);
The Jester (Trickster) is one who is cunning, mischievous, and playful ("The jester archetype includes the clown, the trickster, and anyone at all who loves to play or cut up" 196);
The Caregiver is one who tends to others who may not be able to care for themselves ("Throughout time, symbols of caregiving expressed mostly as a powerful maternal figure have been alternatively sentimentalized and demonized" 209);
The Creator is an inventor or someone or something that embodies a higher power of creation ("The creator is not about fitting in but about self-expression" 227);
The Ruler embodies power and control ("The ruler knows that the best thing to do to avoid chaos is to take control" 244).

For this post, analyze one print advertisement, and explain how it uses one or more of these archetypal figures.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Post for Feb 28

Hello All,

I hope you're enjoying The Hero and the Outlaw; unlike Eliade's original theories in The Myth of the Eternal Return, Mark and Pearson have written this text to have direct application to the real (a.k.a., capitalist) world.

For this post, read pages 1-48, and choose one quote you find interesting or insightful. Post the quote (with the page number), and give a brief explanation as to why you chose this specific quote.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Post for Feb 21

Hello All,

For this post, name the film as well as at least three of the archetypes/symbols you plan on analyzing.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Post for Feb. 16

Hello all,

One concept Eliade discusses is the idea of "Celestial Models," which means using a religious, mythological, or historical model as the basis for a new act, event, or creation.

One clear example of this occurs in the process of naming; we choose names because they embody and reflect certain characteristics.

For this post, explain how one of these names is significant. Analyze the etymology (word roots and origin), and explain how the history of this name is relevant for understanding the character.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Post for Feb. 11

Hello All,

As with the first reading from Eliade, focus on the larger structure of ideas, not the individual examples.

One concept that Eliade discusses in this section is the idea of pre-creation chaos and invasion of the dead as part of a larger system and ritual of renewal. During these celebrations or ritual periods, "the dead invad[e] the earth, communicat[e] with the living, and thus creat[e] a confusion that announce[s] the close of the current cosmic cycle" (p. 73).

One current example of this is our celebration of Halloween. For this post, describe your favorite Halloween costume from childhood (or adulthood, if you still celebrate). If you are offended by Halloween, describe the costume that most offends you.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Post for Feb 7

Hello All,

As the syllabus states, you should have read pages 2-48 in Eliade's Myth of the Eternal Return.

The text is complex, and Eliade uses a multitude of examples, so pay attention to the individual patterns and structures.

For example, on page 4, Eliade writes that human acts have value not from "their crude physical datum but with their property of reproducing a primordial act, of repeating a mythical example."

In other words, Eliade claims that we find meaning in repeating those same acts and processes that our ancestors found meaning; he implies that part of the reason we find these events meaningful is because they are the same as what our parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents--not to mention individuals from history, myth, and religion--experienced.

You have probably experienced many meaninful moments in your life. For this blog, describe one of those moments.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Post for Jan 28

Hello All,

I apologize in advance for missing class on Friday. Instead of class, post a second body paragraph for your essay. Be sure to use a clear topic sentence, and make sure your paragraph exhibits syntax variety and has a quote from the song and from Ariadne's Clue.

2nd Post for Jan 26

For this post, compliment one person's introduction.

Jan 26

Hello All,

For this blog, post your introductions!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Post for Jan 26

Hello All,

For this post, choose one symbol or archetype from your song, and explain how that symbol relates to the song's theme/concept/message.

Be sure to use two quotes: one from the song and one from Ariadne's Clue.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Post for Weekend of 1/22-23

Hello All,

As we discussed in class, just name the song (and artist) you plan on analyzing for our first out-of-class essay.

Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Post for January 21 (Homework)

For this post, follow the same procedure as the group-blog, but this time work as individuals to analyze one Thomas Allen photograph.

What themes does the photograph evoke or portray? How do Martin & Munoz use symbols and archetypes to convey that theme?

Make sure to use three quotes:
one with an introductory phrase;
one with an independent clause and colon;
one with pieces incorporated into your own sentence.

Post for January 19

Today's post is a group-post, so make sure to include all your names at the beginning or end of your post.

1. Choose one photograph from Walter Martin and Paloma Munoz's series titled Travelers.
2. Write a paragraph analysis of that photograph in which you answer the following questions:
a) what is the photograph about/what theme(s) does the photograph convey?
b) how do the artists use symbols and archetypes in order to evoke/convey meaning in the photograph?
3. Your analysis must use three quotes from Ariadne's Clue:
a) quote with introductory phrase;
b) quote with independent clause and colon;
c) pieces of quote incorporated within your own syntax.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Post for the weekend of Jan. 15-17

Hello All,

For this weekend's post, choose one image from the J. Paul Getty exhibit titled Where We Live and briefly describe one symbol or archetype in the photograph.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Post for Monday, Jan 10

Hello All,

For Monday's post, choose one of these self-portraits to analyze.

What persona is the artist exhibiting? Why do you think he or she chooses to show this mask to the world?

Frida Kahlo's Self-Portait, 1940

Diane Arbus's Self-Portrait with Infant Daughter, 1945.

Ansel Adams's Self-Portrait Monument Valley, Utah, 1958

Helmut Newton's Self-Portrait with Wife June and Models, 1984 (Warning: Nudity)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Post for Jan. 7

Hello All,

Pages 3-35 of Stevens's Ariadne's Clue introduce some of the background explanations and contexts for symbols and archetypes. One example he gives of a context in which these symbols and archetypes find expression is in dreams, and he cites a study by psychologists Hall and Nordby in which they classified verious types of dreams that transcend any particular culture or era:

"These typical dreams, as we shall call them, are experienced by virtually every dreamer [...] These typical dreams express the shared concerns, preoccupations and interests of all dreamers. They may be said to constitute the universal constants of the human psyche" (as cited in Stevens, p. 21).

On that same page, Stevens gives a list of these universal dreams.

For your post, describe one dream that you have had that would fall into one of these categories.

For example, Stevens gives the example of "being pursued by hostile strangers"; in one such dream, I was being chased through the woods by a group of villagers with pitchforks and torches. It was night, and I could see the lights from their torches through the trees as I was running. It was almost like I was in a black-and-white monster film from the 1950s and I was the monster. Luckily, I awoke before they could catch me.

First Day of Class

Hello All,

For this trial run, briefly introduce yourself: your name, major, and one surprising detail about yourself.

Then briefly list what you consider to be one of your writing strengths and weaknesses.