A Raisin in the Sun Structuralism Project
For this project, complete the following steps. Note my examples of each step at the bottom of the page:
1: IDENTIFY a textual moment (I define this as a chunk of dialogue of any length spoken by one character)
2: Pluck out any three words from that dialogue
3: Define each as you THINK the character defines them (you THEORIZE)
4: Fill in the blank with a word or concept of YOUR choice, that you would be willing you defend: This character’s philosophy of _______ FRAMES his or her perception of the textual moment
5: Determine what the anchor is that HOLDS the fixed structure together—“the thing without which nothing holds”; describe and defend in three-to-five sentences (you THEORIZE, basically, what a force is that binds HOW words can mean within your character’s philosophy. For instance, within a Christian philosophy, we might define “Jesus” as “Son of God,” “Mary” as “Mother of Jesus,” “Bible” as “Word of God,” and “marriage” as “union of man-woman.” However, the symbol of G-O-D is such that, without it, the words we just mention can NO LONGER be defined as the simplistic, joined-at-the-help definitions we created. Funnily enough, though, if we try to DEFINE G-O-D in this Christian scheme, we’d have little success, because being of Christian philosophy requires our subservience to G-O-D, at least in theory; the second that G-O-D is allowed to be defined and made possible through language, the word loses its allure, the scheme loses its majesty, and the whole fixed structure topples. Words like Jesus/Bible/Mary/marriage had their unitary definitions made possible by G-O-D, but if the latter is “just another word,” anything is able to “mean” anything else–everything becomes discourse, chaos. So structuralism relies on the existence of such a force as G-O-D; let’s call it, “the G-O-D factor)
My example of each step (follow along in book):
1: (Act 1, Scene 1).
2: Three words I’ll pluck out from Walter: tired/man/woman.
3: To Walter, in that moment,
tired→ financially frustrated
man→ economic provider of household
woman→ emotionally subordinated to husband.
4: Walter’s philosophy of marriage FRAMES his perception of this textual moment.
5: THE GOD FACTOR: MONEY, in which I would advance a theory that MONEY is the thing without which tired would NO LONGER mean how I defined it in step 3, within Walter’s philosophy of marriage. I would defend this point in up to three sentences.
^I would repeat this process for the other two words, with up to THREE sentences per word. Simply provide me three paragraphs of text–one per word–with up to three sentences per paragraph. In-text citations are encouraged but not required.
DIRECTIONS and EVALUATION~
In addition to the blue text above, the only way I want you to format this is simply to CREATE numbers 1-5 in a blog entry, and add in all text in a range and format similar to my example, above. written reports should be completed in 600-700 words