Shofner 1Hannah ShofnerEnglish 230-007RichardsonNovember 17, 2011 Multimedia Project Write Up In today’s society, the term “media” is used in conjunction with everything. From popculture to social, political and educational uses, media touches almost every part of our lives.And in turn, the typical daily life of our culture acts as musing for these works of media. It’s nowonder then that we can draw associations of today’s media topics with those from past era’sentertainments. Although the environments of yesteryear might differ with the situations ofmodern media, we can still relate some timeless key motifs present in both. Forming theseassociations will help readers to identify the lessons buried between the lines and apply them totheir daily lives. In the ancient medieval text, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight written by the Pearl Poet,a chivalrous man is forced to face his fear of mortality. This fear of dying causes the knight,Gawain, to go against his deeply rooted moral code. He attempts to rely on the magic of anobject to protect him from his fate. Although the wrong decision to make, he admits his faultand this immoral act turns into a virtuous confession. Gawain is reminded “that the frailty offlesh is man’s biggest fault,” (Pearl, 2435). Associating this with present day society, I instantlythought of Steve Jobs. Jobs advanced our society in unforeseen ways, and now we are left onlyto imagine how much further he could have taken it. Although Jobs was more successful in hisambitions than Gawain would have claimed himself to be, Jobs’ death impacted our society asmuch as Gawain’s probably would have impacted the Arthurian court. Jobs’ revolutionarycreations represent the state of our society: inventive, technological, and connected. Likewise,
Shofner 2Gawain’s journey represented the state of his society: dependent upon nature, chivalrous, andconnected. Both men’s biggest shortcomings fault to their mortality. Albert Camus’ The Stranger dissects the trial of an absurd man who committed asenseless murder. The murderer, Mersualt, lives an of-the-moment existence which influenceshis values and morals. Because he doesn’t tend to see how his actions will affect him in the longrun, he often fails to recognize the importance of each decision. He lacks a strong moral justicesystem and because of such his relationships with himself, others, and God are compromised.Mersault is called out on this by the minister, “I am on your side. But you have no way ofknowing it because your heart is blind. I shall pray for you,” (Camus, 120). A similarcharacteristic can be found in modern day reality star, the Hills’ Heidi Montag. Her best friendLauren consistently called her out on her diminishing values while on the show. Heidi becameobsessed with keeping up appearances as do many people in today’s society chasing money andfame and lost sight of the value of her friendship. By comparing Meursault and Heidi, we see theabsurd irrational tendencies of morality to compromise a promising situation for a fleetingmoment of frivolity. “Here, Bullet” is Brian Turner’s poem dissecting a game of Russian roulette. A soldier,Turner’s game is compiled using war stricken imagery which eludes an impression of the battlegoing on in his mind. “If a body is what you want, then here is bone and gristle and flesh. Here isthe clavicle-snapped wish, the aorta’s opened valves, the leap thought makes at the synapticgap,” (Turner, 1-5). Comparatively, Harry Potter gives himself over to Lord Voldemort’s gamein the movie Deathly Hallows Part Two. Harry risking his life meeting Voldemort in theForbidden Forest is reminiscent of Turner playing Russian roulette. Like Turner, Harry’s mind,linked to the dark lord’s, was also a place on constant strife. Moreover, the very anatomical
Shofner 3nature of the quote can be associated with Harry in the fact that Voldemort shared a body withHarry, reading his mind and feelings his emotions. Relating these quotes to various situations allows the reader to see the importance ofmedia throughout history. Throughout time, media has been entertaining to society andaudiences want to enjoy a relatable story. Therefore, the media produced during a time periodshows us the characteristics of the era- the fads, newest advancements, societal standards, etc.,but also continuously shows us typical trials and tribulations of human existence allowing us torelate to the past, feeling more a part of it. By corresponding central themes to various mediatopics, readers develop a relatable perception of the lesson being taught and will apply it to otheraspects.
Shofner 4 Works CitedArmitage, Simon. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight . New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2008. Print.Camus, Albert. the Stranger. 1st Vintage International ed. New York: Random House, Inc., 1989. Print.Turner, Brian. “Here, Bullet.” The Georgia Review 58.3 (Fall 2004): 521. Print. Photos CitedCharis Tsevis. Wired Steve Jobs . 2011. Graphic. www.fubiz.net Web. 17 Nov 2011. <http://www.fubiz.net/galleries/set/charis - tsevis/photo/149828251/>.lauren_conrad1. 2010. Screencap. http://danchiz.com/ Web. 17 Nov 2011. <http://danchiz.com/wp -content/uploads/2010/07/lauren_conrad1 - 300x225.jpg>.CJSfan. Avadakedavra. 2011. Screencap. www.wikia.com Web. 17 Nov 2011. <http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/Forbidden_Forest>.