All posts by darshchauhan

Essay on Animal Liberation

Hi everyone, was looking through some pieces from last year and I thought I’d share an essay I was fortunate enough to win the MHS Rai Gaita Philosophy Prize with- it’s on the topic of animal liberation. Feel free to leave feedback and/or rebuttals!

Essay on Animal Liberation

inspired by the work of Peter Singer

The principle of animal liberation is defined as the freeing of animals from the exploitation of humans and seeks to address the perceived value of animals in relation to that of humans. Since the first humans in history, which dates to two hundred thousand years ago, animals have remained the most primary source of food for humankind. This fact remains true to date, and it is time that the moral degradation that exists between humans and animals is recognized and acted upon, and by instigating change on an individual level, the global community has much to benefit from. Animals are, of course, biologically incapable of speaking up for themselves, and humankind’s consumption of them is an unpunishable exploitation of their moral worth, which is not any lesser than that of humans’. Further, the environment on which humans reside is at risk of destruction as a result of our consumption of meat, and by not doing so, not only do we make the correct decision on an ethical level, but we also increase the sustainability of our planet, which we consciously destroy when engaging in the consumption of animal products. Ultimately, it is humankind’s greed and desire for short-term gratification and universal dismissal of the value of animals that prevents us from liberating them; nevertheless, we have a moral obligation to aspire to affect impactful change and therefore liberate animals of their gross mistreatment.

In the last two hundred thousand years of human existence, societies have been built, people have learnt how to meaningfully communicate with each other, their purpose has extended from simply needing to meet their biological needs and technology has improved their lifespan. Yet, despite this progression which separates humans from any other species, one fact remains consistent over these millennia; that humans have relied on animals as a source of food. At first, this was reasonable- this was the sole source of nutrition and we learnt to become hunter-gatherers. However, we have now reached a point in time where meat is not an essential part of one’s diet, and we succumb to the temptation of prioritizing the few seconds of bliss that consuming these products provides to our taste buds over the sanctity of non-human life simply because it is more convenient to do so. It is inherently wrong to consume animal products because although they are biologically incapable of expressing it, animals are not morally worth any less than humans, and hence, to engage in their consumption is to support a form of murder. Peter Singer, author of Animal Liberation, describes this as our obligation to ‘speak up for those who cannot speak up for themselves’. However, as humans, we would rather choose to believe that animal life is not meaningful because it satisfies us materially and there is no consequence to doing so. Further, it has become tradition between generations to not question the immorality of consuming animals as we would rather choose to ignore the problem rather than respond to it. We possess a moral imperative as well as a pragmatic means of not consuming meat and yet meeting our own biological needs. It is irrelevant whether an animal is brought up as being fed healthily, having the ability to roam around or living to the extent of its lifespan compared to if it doesn’t have any room to sleep and is crowded with thousands of its kind- ultimately, the result is the same; these animals die at our hands and we choose to ignorantly believe that if their lifestyle was healthy, we have no reason to feel guilty. In fact, convincing ourselves of this is a coping mechanism for the guilt we may feel. However, despite the various differences between humans and non-humans, regardless of the condition they are brought up in, when in suffering, animals show the same emotional stress as humans. Hence, to kill and consume them from a moral perspective is in no way justifiable. Humankind has achieved much since the beginning of its existence, and in the words of Singer, ‘the notion that human life is sacred just because it is human life is medieval’, and therefore, as time moves forward, so must we.

In the case where the above argument is invalid, it can be said that it is still in humankind’s best interests to undergo animal liberation because the lifespan of the planet that both humans and non-humans live on is dangerously reduced every time we consume a meat product. The average Briton consumes approximately eleven thousand animals in their lifetime, and each time they do so, they threaten our capacity to survive and thrive on Earth. For example, a 2015 report showed that 18% of the world’s  carbon emissions came from the rearing and preparation of the consumption of animals, and this amount was more than the carbon emissions from every form of transport put together. This dilemma represents a contradiction in humankind’s interests- is it better to preserve the sustainability of the planet or continue to consume animal products at its expense? It is unfortunate that the term ‘better’ in this context generally does not refer to which option is more ethical, but rather, which is more pragmatic and convenient. As can be imagined, it is easier for humans to dismiss the future of a planet they won’t be living on in eighty years than to act on the belief that it is imperative to secure a safe environment for future generations. Singer puts this decision as humankind’s ‘gambling with the future of our planet- for the sake of hamburgers’. It is imperative that we not only realize that the future of the planet is at stake as a result of our consumption of meat, but that we act upon it by pursuing animal liberation. Of course, this is not to say that there won’t be any threat to Earth if we all stopped eating meat, but we must strive to attain the attainable, and this can only be achieved in small steps, starting on an individual level.

Many consumers of animal products agree with the above points and are able to realize that our consumption of meat is inherently wrong from a moral perspective, and yet despite their own admission, continue to eat meat. This poses the practical problem of actually converting to a diet without animal products; on the one hand, there are animal-consumers who choose to reject these moral arguments for the sake of their own material satisfaction, and on the other, there are animal-consumers who agree with these points yet continue to eat meat. In this case, practical action through the spreading of awareness is vital if the pursuit of animal liberation is to be successful. We must learn to educate theoretically, but also practically, by practicing what we preach. The time is long overdue for us to, as a species, uphold the same value to the right to life for human as for animals- and most importantly, we must learn that we cannot always pursue our own interests simply because they benefit us; rather, we must act in pursuit of the best outcome for the most amount of people, and the pursuit of animal liberation is one element of this broader concept. Finally, in the words of Singer, “if possessing a higher degree of intelligence does not entitle one human to use another for his or her own ends, how can it entitle humans to exploit non-humans?”

Hi everyone, was looking through some documents from last year, where I undertook a Literature class and wanted to share a piece. This is a creative critique of Julian Barnes’ Parenthesis in A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters followed by a written commentary. Feel free to leave any feedback and I hope you enjoy!

 

 ‘I trusted you to enshrine the wonders of the world to these students for a reason, and you’ve betrayed that trust. You’ve betrayed me.’

These are the words from my boss that refuse to leave my throbbing head as I push a heavy door with a rusty padlock open. The padlock isn’t really locked, but Beatrice the bar owner would rather brood over her ex-boyfriend who dumped her six months ago than serve customers. I’m one of those few customers she doesn’t mind. The bar is dimly lit and has one other occupant sitting in its corner. It’s too dark for me to be able to make out his face but he emits the scent of concrete and dons baggy clothes that were probably from an older brother. Beatrice hands me a whiskey. As I sit down on a stool I conclude that he must be working on the construction site across the road- the one that’s supposed to be a school. I scold myself mentally for automatically making this conclusion- it’s what I preach, or rather, preached my students not to do. That was before I got fired.

 

It’s so easy to make judgements about a person when you look at them. The first impression we garner of others lets us form a slot in our brain so that we can place them- if everything is not categorized, we humans do not know what to make of it; compartmentalization and assumption gives us peace because we are able to reach into our little schemata and pull out the information we have whenever we need it. When the situation presents itself and we don’t know something, we compartmentalize it anyway and keep on repeating it to ourselves until our mind convinces our brain that is it fact, even when it isn’t- especially when it isn’t. But why are we humans like this? Why not accept truth for what it is?  It is because we fear the unknown. The unknown is why we are scared of talking to new people, it is why we stick to what we know and refuse to hear, say, a woodworm’s perspective on the story of Noah- we’d rather believe in the beauty that God created than the prejudice and discriminatory selection that could have just as easily taken place on the Ark. We pretend that we are happy doing whatever it is we are doing, when, in actual fact, we are merely safe. Being safe from and fearing the unknown is a very polite definition of ignorance. If safety wore a cloak so no-one could see its face and carried a dagger so no-one could feel its pain, it would be called ignorance. The repetition of lie after lie has created a false world- a censored setting where being realistic is treated as being pessimistic. This fake world is probably the reason I’m in this bar now, watching Beatrice softly sob behind the counter as she reads a text from a ‘Brett’, and perhaps it is why I am reminiscing upon the untold meaninglessness of life whilst watching the English cricket team argue with the umpire on the TV.

 

I am a mess. My shirt is torn from the fight I’d had with my boss today- prestigious universities don’t seem to appreciate reality; I’d been fired for speaking the truth to my students; for telling them that the world is not really a nice place and just because we put out heads down whenever shit goes on, it doesn’t mean the shit stops. I upset the pretty little image in their heads that life was always going to be okay in the end and burst their little bubble of an imagined utopia.

 

Beatrice gave me another whiskey and I played with it for five minutes before deciding that I would drink it. Truth be told, I was always going to drink it, I was just testing my temptation. The idea of truth is especially intriguing because there’s really no such thing as truth. If truth was true, it would be presented by an unbiased and omnipresent being- perhaps, you would think, a God. Any other person speaking the ‘truth’ isn’t really doing so, because, in speaking, they have their own subconscious biases that limits the accuracy of what they are saying, which thereby renders it untrue. It cannot be possible for a single person to be able to administer a truth- even if 99.99% of something is true, that still means 100% of it is untrue. Take, for example, a classic philosophical question; when a tree falls in the middle of an empty forest with no-one in earshot, does the tree make a sound? On the one hand, one group tends to believe that yes, the tree did make a sound when it fell; for, how could it possibly not? But that very fact that there was no-one there to hear that sound means that even if the tree did make a sound, we cannot possibly say that it did because we weren’t there. The fact that we don’t actually know and didn’t hear the sound ourselves means that it was just as possible that the tree didn’t make a sound as it did make a sound. Even if there is one person who is within earshot of the tree falling and tells us that it makes a sound, how can we possibly know that it did? One person has just reaffirmed our original belief that trees make sounds when they fall, and the assumption that this is true is irrational, but because it reinforces what we know, we choose to believe it anyway. And because, down here on Earth, there is no God or any other form of superbeing that can administer objective truth, nothing can ever really be true. When I’ve been using the word ‘truth’ so far, it only refers to the best truth that I know, not the whole truth. So what is the point in striving for truth? It is an unfeasible goal; a candle in the wind- there is no point striving for the unobtainable if it is, indeed, unobtainable. We will go mad trying to do so, and when we are millimetres away from obtaining it, perhaps we will realize that we don’t actually want it because it will challenge every single thing we know and that’s too difficult for our little human brains to cope with. Instead of engaging ourselves in the pursuit of the impossible, we should rather strive for small, miniature goals that we can accomplish, and in so doing, experience some pleasure. We should grow up, get married, find a job for forty years, retire, eat our favorite meal for our last one and die in peace. Yes, we will ignore the truth- but we’ve ignored truth since the start of time; ignorance is better than hopeless yearning for it.

 

Well, surely it is. Maybe I’m slowly giving up on it.

 

I drink my whiskey, content in my solitude. As I brood over my firing, my problems and my life, I feel a piercing headache add to the list of my misfortunes. Its pain is more than just annoying- it’s a small, miniscule crevice in the darkest part of my mind that just keeps on throbbing and it won’t let go.  It is the part that they will find in my autopsy and it will jump onto the doctor who’s doing it and it will slowly suck its way into their life just the way it did on mine. My brain refuses to stop spewing thoughts from the past and the future; the good old days with friends and family and fun is all I long for and I had carried myself through the years with the faint hope at the back of my mind that one day I would regain them- that I still can regain them.

 

But can I?

 

Or have I just convinced myself that I can?

 

Beatrice hands me another whiskey. The man in the corner of the bar clears his throat. A truck honks its horn in the distance. I look forward to being able to drink my sorrows away.

 

I think about love. I think about the love I’ve felt, the love I’ve received and the love I wish I could feel. I was now fifty-three, and I’d had four non-meaningful relationships. Each of them was filled with something, perhaps it was love, perhaps it was merely pleasure. I don’t actually know what love is; my students tell me that they ‘fall in love’- as if there’s some quantifiable way of expressing love. But how could we possibly know when we are in love? What if I’m lying in bed with a partner who tells me she’s in love with me and I’m in love with her- I feel in love with her; but she may sleep with someone else next week. That’s not love, is it? That’s just sexual pleasure. But I thought it was love when it was happening. See what I mean? We don’t know anything about truth- one day it’s one thing, the next day it’s the opposite. ‘She will love you like a fly will never love you’- Massive Attack’s ‘Paradise Circus’ shows us the extent to which the love we feel is valid. Our love is like a fly’s love- or perhaps, like a mosquito’s love. They crave our constant attention whilst not actually loving us. This is like love in a relationship- it is only ever for pleasure, to appease the mind and the body for just a few moments- so it can occupy us while we let shit go on around us- mosquito’s love.

 

Another whiskey meanders its way down my throat. It relaxes me. It numbs my brain and makes me feel okay. Whilst I make a living out of critiquing humankind, I am human myself and fall into the same traps as everyone else- I’m just not as blind when I do.

 

We shouldn’t chase love because no matter where we run, we will encounter mosquito’s love along the way- and we love mosquito’s love; you could say, we mosquito love mosquito’s love- and it drives us away from the thin walls of sanity. It contorts truth and bends reality and will make us go insane. We should enjoy mosquito’s love- it feels good- but we should know that this isn’t really what we are searching for; this isn’t the way our lives should be lived.

 

But how should they be lived?

 

If there is no such thing as objective truth and love is pointless, then what is the point of being here?

 

Well, don’t ask me, I’m just a nihilist professor of philosophy who’s just been fired.

 

And I’m so fucking drunk.

 

What do I know?

Written Commentary

The Parenthesis piece that has been written is a creative critique of Barnes’ half-chapter with the same name, and primarily examines two concepts that recur throughout the novel; the nature of truth and love.

 

In this piece, the motifs of biblical stories, including an allusion to chapter one of the novel is included- and in order to illuminate Barnes’ continued use of historical examples to illustrate his points, this piece draws upon a song (Massive Attack’s Paradise Circus) in order to ensure credibility to the work.

 

The language of this piece attempts to replicate that of Barnes’, drawing upon his use of a character who’s mental state is altered- Barnes’ is in love, this piece’s is drunk. In addition, the use of declarative assertions is also made, with multiple sentences starting with ‘we must…’ in both pieces in order to emphasize a particular idea.  The use of questions is also prevalent, such as ‘The history of the world?’ (Barnes) and ‘But can I?’ (this piece), and these are included to challenge the content of the piece and to engage the reader in their own thoughts.

 

To deliver his views on truth and love, Barnes sets a concrete scene by having the reader picture himself sleeping next to a partner- an equivalent of this is included in this piece by the character, who has just been fired from their job as a professor of philosophy as a university for preaching a nihilistic rhetoric has been developed; and they find themselves in a barren bar.

 

Over the course of the night, the character broods over their firing, simultaneously offering their views on whether or not objective truth is attainable and the meaning of love. In direct response to Barnes’ view of fabulation of history, a point of agreement between the two pieces is that in the modern world, fabulation dominates storytelling; seen when Barnes says ‘we value one liar’s version as much as another’s’, and in my piece, where I say ‘it cannot be possible for a single person to be able to administer a truth’. The primary point of contradiction arises in the response to the subjectivity in which we behold the world- where Barnes argues that ‘we must believe that 43 percent objective truth is better than 41 percent objective truth’, and that we must strive to attain the best possible version of events, this piece says that ‘even if 99.99% of something is true, that still means 100% of it is untrue’, and that striving to obtain what cannot be reached is pointless. To demonstrate this point, a typical philosophical metaphor is applied through the ‘tree analogy’, which is a more abstract idea when compared to Barnes’ typical methodology of measuring some material quantitatively, such as the ox’s heart. This piece also argues that the root of fabulation is fear of the unknown, and if we strive to obtain objectivity, we will reject it because it fails to conform to the vision of life that we picture in our heads. Instead, we must pursue short-term goals that increase our level of instantaneous pleasure, and that hypothetical concepts such as truth and love are merely pretty images we like to paint inside our heads- our striving for them is futile because ultimately, they do not exist- we only imagine that they do because we want them to. The same reasoning applies to love, whilst Barnes acknowledges that ‘it [love] will go wrong…but we must strive for it’, this piece critiques that love cannot possibly be defined by those who think they experience it.

 

Ultimately, this piece is best able to illuminate the original text through the nature of its storytelling on two abstract concepts whilst simultaneously giving the reader a visual sense of the scene and what to picture. Whilst it is ultimately agreed upon that fabulation and love must be examined for their legitimacy, Barnes argued that they must still be strived for, whereas this piece rejects the notion of optimism but also fails to provide an adequate solution to life’s meaning, which is a nihilistic perspective.

 

 

‘There Will Be Blood’ Creative Response

Hi everyone, one of the film texts lots of classes have studied is There Will be Blood (2007). This is a creative response in the form of diary entries as part of an English assignment to the movie. It will make more sense to people who have watched it, but if you haven’t, I’d definitely recommend it! Enjoy and feel free to give feedback.

Saturday 24th November, 1937

To H.W, the man who was always there,

I don’t know what to feel. I don’t know what to think. I don’t know what to do.

I am ashamed. I am humiliated.

Begrudgingly, but honestly, I will concede that this was all my doing, my harm. If I was not so insecure or disengaged and obsolete, then perhaps none of this would have occurred. Perhaps. But it doesn’t matter now. I am where I am and there’s nothing I can do to go back and change what happened.

I’m sorry I write to you in this way but it feels as if control has abandoned my body. You are well, I presume and I pray Mary is well. I wish it were the same here, but the truth is, our livelihoods deteriorate by the moment. What was once a tranquil, peaceful grassland where we merrily lived our simple lives has become a rotting hell for each and every one of us. We could hunt quail, drink goat’s milk and sing songs without fear once upon a time, without a care.

But as I lay here on this bench, I feel the warmth dissipating and it’s not because of the weather. I’ve snuggled myself up against this grey seat but nothing will take the pain away. My knees are tucked against my chest and I moan in pain. I call his name but nothing will bring him back. Nothing.

He’s done it, son. He’s insane and he’s gone and killed Eli. Eli. What hope there was for me before you left has been crushed in the hands of the man who went insane- Daniel Plainview. Boy, I would do anything to have him back, anything. They were speaking with each other in his house, Daniel’s house. I couldn’t hear what they were saying, but they were arguing- there’s never been much the two of them have agreed upon. I watched them exchange insults from the corner of the room. I was a coward. I whimpered in anticipation just as I whimper here now, except now there is nothing I can do to bring him back.

Daniel, being the abusive drunkard that he is, hurled a bowling pin at the man who I have watched grow before my very eyes. I can’t comprehend him; his actions, his motives, the man is a foreign alien who came here and conquered and eradiated what didn’t please him and there’s nothing I can do about it. Nothing.

Sunday 25th November, 1937

The night has done me some favours. Or perhaps it was forcing my thoughts onto a piece of paper. Either way, I am now more rested than yesterday. I wish time healed me as much as they say it does. I wish the hard things in life were easier, but again I ask for too much. If it weren’t for Daniel Plainview, that emotionless pile of scum, then I wouldn’t have to suffer today.

Daniel Plainview. Daniel Plainview’s arrival to me was a blessing at first sight. Here was a man and his innocent son- you, out for quail like everyone else. But he had a feeling about him- almost like an aura. He carried an attribution of authority and a mentality of nothing but intention.

That is what has brought us here. Intention. When the wrong intention is put in the wrong person’s head, then there lies no method behind his madness- only madness. Plainview’s intentions, however, seemed as just as his presence. His motivator seemed to be quail and the Sunday Ranch seemed to be the best place to look for it.

What was it that brought the most innocent of intentions, the merest of motivations to the downfall that I live and breathe every single day? From the corner of the room, I watched him make a mockery of the village I loved. I put his evil down to only one thing; greed.

Greed is what has gripped Daniel by the hand and never let go. His selfishness and desire for all the material wealth he could get his dirty hands on is what has led to the failure of this ranch. No success was ever enough to quench his thirst. With every dollar he gained, he lost one of his morals. Now he is the richest person on the land.

That’s enough from me. It is Eli’s funeral now and I must mourn the loss of another life since the appearance of Daniel Plainview.

Monday 26th November, 1937

This is not the first time Plainview and I have crossed paths. You’ll remember I said that there’s things I needed to tell you.

Many years ago, when the likes of you were learning to walk, I, like Plainview, mined to support my family. I’d spend hours toiling rigorously in the scorching conditions for a pebble who’s worth kept me living. I worked alongside Plainview for quite some time- we’d both bring our young children to the sites in the hope that they would watch and learn.

One day though, and I recall it vividly, on a Tuesday afternoon, I had a terrible accident. I was working with a team on a hole, including Plainview. To put it frankly, one of our team members, I don’t recall his name, made a simple miscalculation which resulted in me tumbling down the hole. I’ve never felt such pain until recently. This was a different kind of pain though, it was physical, not emotional. Anyway, I fell and my team could not locate me. I was assumed dead when they returned. Slowly but surely, after days of being trapped, my younger body found its energy and I crawled my way out and back to our head site.

Barely breathing, I took some water and looked around. There was no-one there. They had lost all hope in me and that is what still shatters my confidence today. I limped slowly around the barren room, an oasis in the scorching desert. In the corner of the room, crouched underneath the shadiest bench was a baby girl. I picked her up and she cried and cried. I didn’t know what to do so I cried with her.

I searched and searched for my own little boy but he was nowhere to be seen. Disheartened, he became my only goal for the rest of my life. For years, not a day went by when he didn’t cross my mind, but what gave me some hope was the girl who was still there for me.

She is all grown up now HW. And I consider myself a fool because I realise Plainview’s very same greed is what left her there.

She is his daughter. I named her Mary.

And the scariest part, HW, is that I named my son Hugh-Watford Sunday.

Now I have found him.

HW.

You are my son and I am proud of you.

To the man who really was always there,

I love you,

Abel Sunday

Written Explanation

In this sequence of diary entries, Abel Sunday reveals to HW that he is actually his father, and Daniel is Mary’s father. Amidst these revelations, Abel expresses a state of emotional confusion proceeding the death of his other son, Eli Sunday. This is evidenced on Saturday via the use of shorter sentences and an intentional lack of coherence in his thoughts. Abel is ‘ashamed’ and ‘humiliated’ and feels that ‘nothing will take the pain away’. The use of shorter sentences, such as ‘…nothing I can do about it. Nothing’, illustrates that his mental state is compromised by the grief induced by Daniel’s act of homicide. This is done in an attempt to convey Abel’s emotional state to the reader. On Sunday, Abel explores the personality of Daniel Plainview, and examines the relationship between his motives and actions. A thematic explanation of greed as a motivator occurs, and it is concluded that the greed in Daniel has ‘gripped [him] by the hand and never let go’. On Monday, the revelation and backstory behind Daniel and Abel’s previous relationship is given, and once again, a variation in sentence structure illustrates a state of mind compromised by emotion. The entry commences in ‘to HW, the man who was always there’, indicating Abel’s failed search for his son, and also ends in a similar line; ‘to HW, the man who really was always there’. Ultimately, the aim of this piece was to explore the theme of greed through a tell-all perspective from a minor character, Abel Sunday.

My Slam Poem

Hi all, after hearing Safwan’s great slam poem about life and death a couple of weeks ago, I thought I’d share my slam poem from when I was in year nine. Hope you enjoy!

we are always asking questions in our life, about our life, how to fix our strife, what we perceive as rife

some questions we see as significant like, does God exist?

others we see as insignificant, like whose cruel idea was it to put an ‘s’ in lisp?

well we ask these questions and sometimes we get answers, other times we get the same responses as how do we cure cancer?

well let me tell you something- while you’re brooding upon these puzzles in contemplation,

half of our Earth’s population is wondering something else

they are wondering, ‘am I going to get dinner tonight?’, ‘or will I starve for a fourth day in a row?’

in this world we live in, everyone is equal

and that is not my opinionated opinion that is a factual fact and that is that

whether you’re a man, woman, white, black, Asian, African, Muslim or Christian, when we are born, we are born the same.

no one of us is superior over a kid living in poverty on the other side of the world, without an education, without food, without shelter.

we are as equal to them as 10 millimetres and 1 centimetre are equal to each other.

so when we get to eat meals every single day and go home to a roof over our head

and be at ease and without a second thought eat our sandwich filled with ham and cheese

do we ever? and I ask you this- do we ever take a moment to stop and say thank you?

do we ever think about people who aren’t as privileged as us and be grateful that we live a happy life?

or do we just convince ourselves that it’s out of our control?

if all people are equal, then why do they suffer like a snipe stuffed in a snuffbox?

they don’t deserve what they are going through

and to be honest, we don’t deserve what we are going through

we deserve worse

and they deserve better

what’s the first thing we like to do when we get into class?

we get on our iPads and check our FaceBook status or how many like we got on that photo on Instagram

no-one thinks about what they have

we like to think about what we don’t have though

those new pair of shoes, that level we’re trying to get through on our game, that piece of food we hate that has the audacity to sit there on our plate

and so when we don’t have something, we become envious. we judge people when they show off those new pair of shoes, or that level they’ve finally gotten through, or a meal with them eating that food we so diligently detest

we accumulate jealousy from all the people we want to be and trap that jealousy inside a jar and hope that those things can somehow come to us.

we never want to appreciate what we have in life

the moment you finish a PE class and run for the water tap and quench what you thing is an unmanageable thirst

some people don’t get a PE class, others don’t get water

it’s difficult to think about that when we spray that water on our friends just for fun

so please

the next time you decide to stare stupidly at your smartphone whilst trying to avoid a conversation- and I do it too

think about where it came from and

please do the person you’re talking to a favour

please do the world a favour

and please do yourself a favour

and say thank you.

 

My Poem

Hi guys, this is a quick poem I wrote yesterday before we were evacuated :(. Hope you enjoy and feel free to give feedback!!

Glee

If he was wrong, then I was a fool,

To have thought he was capable, capable of breaking the rules.

To explore is to know, and to know is to love to live,

To live life at its fullest, we must first forgive.

Yet to do so in this world, in this world filled with hate,

It is like already knowing knowing your fate.

An no-one, no-one knows their fate.

Not you, not me,

So let’s live life at its fullest,

Let’s live life with glee!

My English Othello Assignment: Hidden Scene and Sonnet

Hi all, I have a creative response to Shakespeare’s Othello I’d like to share. I’d appreciate any feedback, thanks!!!

 

Othello Sonnet, Act One Scene Three

 

I hath done nought to be condemned to thou,

Nor thy affairs of the patriarch State.

Me, forced to be witness to torment and how,

My lover with my father birthed their hate.

Grieving in self-pity masked in sorrow,

Whilst Othello spoke of our harmony,

Tears of the great green beast he put for show.

Behind him was only lonely money.

But alas, his status was all to him,

Higher t’was than the love of his daughter.

Or t’was on unjust policy he dimmed,

His slight of my being, not who “ought her”.

  • Yet for every mark he made on their kin,

My end may’ve come by my lover’s sin.

 

 

Written by Darsh Chauhan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Othello Creative Response Assessment Task Draft

Act V Scene III

Cyprus: Desdemona’s bedchamber

Enter Iago, bound in chains

IAGO [to himself]          And yet my chance hath not escaped me.

 

IAGO [crying loudly]            Tis most curséd fate! Thy who hath learned,

that not to be honest was in fact to be wise,

as seen and smelt and heard and felt by the Moor,

was masked under hate and jealousy,

whose solitary occupant was him.

 

Oh, take heed- if anyone be near

I cry from the bottom of my hurt heart,

I am sorry for the unfolded events,

Though I must conceal with great caution,

T’was never me who hath lied to thee,

But instead dishonest Emilia,

That harlot so claiming to be mine wife.

They do not call me ‘honest’ for no reason,

And I beg of thee all to listen,

And to forgive with gratitude and peace.

 

My wife, Emilia, hath made the foul call to you all,

By torturing Othello with their romance,

She hath forced death upon him and his wife.

She could not bear the guilt, nor the sorrow,

And placed this heavy weight on his shoulders,

Which were burdened as it already was.

Then he consoled me, as people oft do,

And out of confusion, out of hate, out of misery,

Othello did to Desdemona,

The deed he dared to do to himself.

 

And yet I am left. I am here,

Standing, bound, watching, waiting for you to come,

To understand and to realise,

What bad fate hath come to the people of Cyprus.

So come. Here me now, and come.

 

 

Enter lodovico and cassio

CASSIO               We hath heard thee. Our swords now be abolished from thy sight,

But not without caution, and hesitation.

LODOVICO                     Indeed, for when the Moor is lost, then all is lost,

And this palace will never be the same.

So let us mourn, let us pray, let us forgive

All that hath happened, and all that is to come.

IAGO                                             I could not agree any more. We must

Learn to grow and live, and recover from this.

CASSIO                                           Come Lodovico, let us release him.

Iago hath maintained honesty,

And love, and sacrifice amongst us.

Let this act of miscommunication

Rest in these chains as we dispose of them,

And all the pain that they hath caused us all.

LODOVICO                                                              Indeed.

 

They release Iago from his chains.

 

Come, my brothers, for we are left for Cyprus,

And Cyprus is left for us.

 

IAGO                                     Excuse me for one moment my good friends,

I have much to ponder on after today.

I will be out with you in a jiffy.

 

Exit LODOVICO  and CASSIO

 

A few moments later;

Enter BIANCA

BIANCA                                           Dear Iago, how do you fare?

Hath Cassio and Lodovico bade you bye?

IAGO                                                              Indeed they hath.

BIANCA                            What content have you made them aware of?

IAGO                                 Nothing any more or less than we hath discussed.

Dear my golden angel Bianca,

It is not many people who be aware

That t’is you and t’is me who hath foiled

The intentions of the infidel Moor.

Even now, Lodovico and Cassio,

Those two, poor and ignorant souls

Believe in my innocence, and only seek

The restoration of torn Cyprus,

Only with a sparkling crown on their heads.

Oh, dear, how greed, even now,

Troubles the good souls of the ambitious,

And optimistically bound soldiers

Of this already fallen State.

 

Come, my dear, for you hath done well,

In clouding the hazéd judgement to darkness

Of the once-valiant Cassio,

Who hath never, never been worthy

Of the position of lieutenant.

Of my position as lieutenant.

BIANCA                            T’was only you who hath carried out this master plan,

My brave and dearest Iago. I did but my part.

IAGO                                 You are more generous than you were, it seems.

Yet come now, my dear Bianca.

Come, for we have a State to rule.

 

Exeunt

Word Count: 610 words

 

Written Explanation

The above hidden scene was written in conjunction with the conclusion of Shakespeare’s Othello. The main concept behind this scene was to give some, but not absolute, indication of Iago’s motives for his actions throughout the course of the play. At no point, in either the play or this scene, are his motives explicitly revealed; instead they are delivered to the reader in such a way that he/she may interpret them in his/her own way. Iago’s deceitful character is upheld in this scene as he continues to lie to Cassio and Lodovico, as the reader finds out that he and Bianca had been planning Othello’s death for a long time. At some points in the scene, some internal rhyme has been implemented (e.g. as seen and smelt and heard and felt). This is to show the reader sensory judgement, and the repetition of and aids in illustrating the line’s significance. The decision to write the scene in Middle English was reached as it adds an element of realism to the scene and picks up accurately from when the play ended. Some other literary devices incorporated in the scene are assonance/alliteration (The intentions of the infidel Moor). There have also been some thematic references in the scene (greed…troubles the souls). This is to highlight greed as an underlying theme in the play; Brabantio’s view of Desdemona as property, Iago’s jealousy is motivated by his strong desire for the lieutenant position, etc. A vast majority of the incentives for the major events in the play are motivated by greed, and it is made to appear ironic that Iago reflects on this in Cassio and Lodovico’s desire for the attainment of Cyprus, when in fact, he is the antagonist. Conclusively, this scene gives some insight into thought process of Iago after the dramatic final scene as well as the unseen yet critical role of Bianca in the play.

 

Word Count: 302 words

 

Prompt: You enter your new, yet old house for the first time. As you walk into your room, you hear a shout of ‘help’!

This was from a while ago but I dug it up from my bag. It is mainly on the entry to the room. Please feel free to provide feedback and enjoy!

I tiptoed stealthily along the corridor, eyes wary and alert, ready to react to anything unusual. Stale dust wafted into my nose as I tried to suppress a sneeze. The wooden floorboards creaked me, moaning in pain as I walked on. I reached what my sister had told me was my new room, and stopped to stare at it.

I never wanted to move here. These old cobwebs replaced the image in my mind of a sunny afternoon, in the backyard at my old house. We could run and play in the grass without a care in the world. Well, there was just one concern. The rent was climbing day by day, and it seemed as if we hoped that ignoring it for long enough would make it disappear. But it didn’t. That’s why we’re here.

Here in this old shamble called a house. My mind returned to the dreadful reality I was facing. I reached out to the doorknob, hand trembling. Slowly I turned it, and walked into an empty room.

The last thing I remembered before the rising pale hand took me was a cry of ‘help’ from my sister in the next room.

And then I was gone.