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August, 2013

  1. A Very Typical Essay.

    August 30, 2013 by oliviapaterson

    Judith Beveridge- Wolf Notes

    Exsanguination, The Kite, Sailor


    Wolf Notes, a collection of poems by Judith Beveridge, relates the journey and ideas of Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha. The collection depicts his existence as he journeys away from his life of material possessions and towards a state of enlightenment. “Exsanguination” comes from the beginning or ‘Peregrine’ section of the collection and conveys the beginning of the journey that introduces the notion of karma or the law of cause and effect which is shown through nature’s revenge on man. Karma underlines the importance of in individuals being responsible for their past and present actions. In addition to this, “Exsanguination” shows the consumerist nature of society, which the Buddha wishes to escape.  “The Kite” on the other hand comes from “between the palace and the Bodhi tree” and depicts the notion that enlightenment is reached through a journey of ones self and therefore the Buddha can not tell the boy anything that is certain.  The final section or “signatures” is where “Sailor” comes from and shows the ultimate state of enlightenment and liberation.


    Exsanguination in the Peregrine section conveys the Buddhists’ notion of karma and sin as well as atonement. Exsanguination, which means to literally drain of blood, portrays a sense of karma as nature takes the life of an innocent child. However the mosquitoes in the poem also represent the consumerism of society and the corruption of society that keeps taking and taking until there is nothing left. It is this exact society that the speaker and the Siddhartha wishes to escape so as to find spiritual fulfilment.  Alliteration is used when “even snakes flooding confessions into the grass” depict values such as confession and therefore sin, which both relate strongly to Christianity.  Beveridge conveys the fragility of life as “he was found in the reeds hit by the hardest ball the summer had stockpiled” however this also shows the idea of cause and effect in that what humans inflict on the landscape the environment will seek revenge in other ways.  Furthermore the savagery of nature is juxtaposed with the savagery of human nature, a shown when Beveridge makes reference to human technology when describing nature. The “noise of chainsaws” shows this technique of using man’s technology to describe nature as well as a sense of karma and therefore the constant battle that humans have with nature. Despite being set in Louisiana, there is a sense of a universal message as the image of the squashed mosquitoes look like “red and black letters” which reflect the red and black of Chinese characters.


    On the other hand “The Kite” demonstrates a sense of “distance” or disconnectedness that runs throughout the poem. This lack of connection shows the change in the Siddhartha as he continues on his journey, yet it also shows his understanding of the uncertainties of the future especially enlightenment.  The section “Between the Palace and the Bodhi Tree” demonstrates through the voice of the Buddha the notion of levity and lightness, which are key ideas that run throughout Buddhism. Though the use of the image of the “cohort wind” represents the notion of enlightenment.  The use of enjambment creates a sense of flow, which connects to the flight of the kite and its connection with the boy. However this idea is juxtaposed with the boy “who looked at me from a distance” this sense of separation and disconnection shows Siddhartha’s acceptance that the future is uncertain. Furthermore the connection that the boy holds with the kite and controls it, mirrors the way that a Monk’s mind must be controlled during mediation.  The image of “a tiny bird in mid-air courtship” and “the precision of an insect targeting a sting” is suggestive of the appreciation of the minutia, which is a motif that runs throughout the section and the whole collection. However the term “courtship” alludes to a sense of connection, levity and lightness and Siddhartha ponders the relationship between consumerism and liberation.  Beveridge uses many literary techniques such as onomatopoeia to describe how the “lightening cracked”. She also uses similes to allude to the idea of connection juxtaposed with disconnection as “(like quick pale flicks of yak-hair fly-wisks)” not only does this image compare with the onomatopoeic description of the lightening it also shows a moment of disconnection as the Buddha seems to fall momentarily out of a meditative state. The use of strong imagery such as “special silk” also connects with the concept of liberation as it depicts the fragility of meditation as well as spiritual enlightenment. Through a reflective calm and accepting tone Siddhartha shows that although he is uncertain of the future he is appreciative of the moment and understands the importance of things learned in the past and how they affect the future.


    Finally, “Sailor” in the “Signatures” section of the collection, represents the Buddha’s final state of enlightenment; through the voice of a sailor who reflects upon his journey at sea. Beveridge uses metalanguage in this section to reflect upon writing poetry. She changes the tense to present in this section and uses metaphors such as that “slips again and again between my fingers” as way to signature her collection, and reflect upon her own journey. The reflective, meditative and observational mood of “Sailor” shows the clarity that is achieved when one completes their passage to enlightenment. There is a quiet acceptance in the sailor as he alludes to past “same old dog” and shows that there is sameness in life that brings about a sense of comfort. Furthermore a perfect understanding, infinite freedom and unrestricted creativity is alluded to in the “unfledged light”, “red-tailed tropical bird”, “a gull hitching a winched cry” and the “peregrine moon” which represent a sense of freedom and lightness and a feeling of movement within the poem. This can be linked with how Siddhartha found that it was a human’s deep craving for existence which led beings to roam from life to life in an endless round of suffering. With the cease of craving-birth, death and suffering also ceased. This realisation brought about a radical and dramatic change in Siddhartha’s being.  All traces of his own craving died away, birth and death dissolved. The limited, human personality ‘Siddhartha’ dropped away and all that was left was total luminous clarity that is portrayed in “Sailor”, as “the moon peeling and pulling”, “the sky roil”, “the peregrine moon” and “an unbailed sky” all represent the immensity of nature, and the uncontrollable movement of time that suggests the insignificance of the sailor in the landscape.


    ‘Peregrine’, ‘Between the Palace and the Bodhi Tree’ and ‘Signatures’ combine to make the three chapters of Wolf Notes, which represents the three different stages within the Buddha’s journey towards enlightenment.  The poems “Exsanguination”, “The Kite” and “Sailor” are all metaphors for the passage towards enlightenment. “Exsanguination” shows the importance of the Buddhist’s notion of Karma and sin, as well as atonement. Furthermore the metaphor shows how the Buddha wanted to distance himself from the consumerism of society that was represented through the mosquitoes. “The Kite” shows the juxtaposition of connection with disconnection as the Siddhartha ponders the relationship between the boy and the kite and himself and his mind and how they must both be controlled. Yet it also explores the notion of appreciation of the minutia, which becomes more apparent in the Siddhartha and he nears his final moment of liberation and spiritual enlightenment. It is clear that from this poem, enlightenment of the mind is different for everyone and cannot be defined as it is a journey of one’s self. In this way it connects to “Sailor” as the sailor, the Buddha and Judith Beveridge reflect on their own personal journeys. Additionally, “Sailor” shows the immensity of nature and the importance of self-refection and clarity in the enlightened state. All three chapters within Wolf Notes help to convey the Buddha’s journey to enlightenment- “a state of transcendental insight into the true nature of reality, to be awake to the highest reality, to things as they really are”.

  2. Blog Audit Revised

    August 30, 2013 by oliviapaterson

    Blog Audit Revised

    • Lose marks
    • Food related
    • Audited for three consecutive weeks
    • Extra blog posts required
    • ·       Must come dressed up (i.e George W. Bush)


    • Private (within the class)
    • Opportunity for redemption

     Email from Elliot – giving you options

    1.      Lose marks
    2.    Food related
    3.    Audited for three consecutive weeks
    4.     Extra blog posts required 

  3. Lecture Notes BETA SYMPOSIUM 2

    August 30, 2013 by oliviapaterson

    How does Hypertext relate to storytelling in different Media formats?

    • programs that allow you to navigate your way through film. can be random how the links are made between the films.
    • the experiences that go with hypertext- meant to be linear but jump all over the place this is becoming the normal.
    • “i’m a Hypertext theorist” – hypertexts gives an archaeology its dated but present.
    • text- that has multiple relations to other text
    • joined to other things in multiple ways
    • not about navigation- navigation is only theory its not just about the reader. not just about giving agency to the reader.
    • the thing with hypertext is you come back to things, though you might think that “oh i’ve seen this already, whats the point” it allows you to take a second look, a second chance to process that information.
    • its like storytelling in a musical poetic form- repetition is ok.

    Is the work we publish online only validated one it it viewed/consumed by others?

    • No, example a personal journal. not intended for anyone to see. but is still helpful to you.  just because people view it doesn’t make it more valid.
    • ontology- what is it if it hasn’t been viewed by anyone? our blogs don’t exist until people view them- divided opinion.
    • when we write in a blog it exists with an audience or not. difference between wether we need an audience to validate what it actually is.
    • the beauty of blogging is that you can write for an imagined audience and if you keep to that style a real audience or readership will come.
    • a link on a webpage is the way to get google ratings on your website- a way the get an audience.

    Do you think the digitalisation of literary texts and the use of the E-reader will eventually replace the physical book completely?

    • example- theatre and film
    • no the physical book has the potential to become a collectors item?
    • libraries- they will still be available?
    • value of the book- you can’t rip pages out of a book because its a book, they almost have a sort of sentimental value.
    • if you take the word literary out of the question it immediately changes.
    • take literature out of the question and they are dead.
    • the only way books will survive is through literature.
    • another problem about books it the environmental footprint of making a physical book….it will become a digital footprint…it will still be literature but it just might not be in a book anymore.



  4. Sherry Turkle

    August 26, 2013 by oliviapaterson


    Sherry aged 65, is a profound American psychologist/ Author who is the Abby Rockefeller Mauzé Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and has obtained a Bachelor in Social Studies along with a PH.D in Sociology and Personality Psychology at Harvard University. Sherry’s work writes on the “subjective side” on humans relationships with technology but more specifically how humans relate to computational objects.

    Connected, But Alone


    Alone Together

    • “In Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other, Turkle discusses how newer technologies are greatly affecting this generation. In the first paragraph of a New York Times review, they use proper note of how adolescents are losing their attention spans and how they lose interest in many aspects. Examples include over-excessive texting, lack of interest in science, and an obsession with Facebook friends”.
    • “She focuses on the current era and how human encounters are growing fewer. Turkle talks about teenagers’ actions of “friending” strangers on Facebook and how kids prefer to text or instant message rather than talking on the phone or even face to face. In her book, she focuses mainly on the consequences of the new texting trend”. (
    • Fresh Air with Terry Gross (NPR) — “In Turkle’s interviews with adults and teenagers, she found people of all ages are drawn to their devices for a similar reason: ‘What is so seductive about texting, about keeping that phone on, about that little red light on the BlackBerry, is you want to know who wants you'” (October 18, 2012).
    • On Being with Krista Tippett (American Public Media) — “Alive Enough? Reflecting on Our Technology” (April 7, 2011). “And here is the starting point for the conversation [Sherry Turkle] would encourage all of us to have within ourselves, within our workplaces, and especially within our families: just because we’ve grown up with the Internet doesn’t mean the Internet is grown up.” [on-air interview plus transcript]
    • A Conversation with Sherry Turkle,” James Nolan, The Hedgehog Review (Spring 2012).  Prof. Turkle discusses her new book, Alone Together: Why we expect more from technology and less from each other”
    • Alone Together: So busy communicating, we neglect each other,” MIT Spectrum [Massachusetts Institute of Techology] (Spring 2011). “Prof. Sherry Turkle says if you don’t teach your children how to be alone, they only know how to be lonely.”(

  5. Do Schools Kill Creativity?

    August 26, 2013 by oliviapaterson


    • The ted talk focused on children’s capacity for creativity and how schools, or the traditional teaching methods tend to squander children’s talents.
    • I think that its true that nowadays creativity is as important as literacy maybe even more important, especially when it comes to original thought
    • I thought that his observation of the ways children compared to adults was interesting in that a child will take a chance,
    • “if they don’t know,  they will have a go”
    • They are not frightened of being wrong. He reiterates that if you’re not prepared to be wrong, you will never come up with anything original.  So my question is how does that happen? When do we become unprepared to be wrong? And why are we so afraid to be wrong?
    • Most adults have lost the ability to have original thought.
    • Sir Ken’s answer is that schools and universities are educating people out of their creative capacity.
    • “all children are born artists” Picasso
    • another example- William Shakespeare, imagine him as  a child, even worse though imagine being his English teacher.
    • When you look at schools all over the world it is clear that they all have the same ranking of subjects….maths, languages, humanities, arts. With even arts being divided with music and art above drama and dance.
    • At school and as children we are steered away from the things that we like on the count of the fact that we will never get a job doing those things. Which is a notion that came about in the age of industrialisation where the more ‘useful’ skills got you a job and earned the most money.

  6. Notes on reading- The Age of the Essay

    August 26, 2013 by oliviapaterson

    • Questions aren’t enough. An essay has to come up with answers. They don’t always, of course. Sometimes you start with a promising question and get nowhere. But those you don’t publish. Those are like experiments that get inconclusive results. An essay you publish ought to tell the reader something he didn’t already know.”
    • Remember the essays you had to write in high school? Topic sentence, introductory paragraph, supporting paragraphs, conclusion. The conclusion being, say, that Ahab in Moby Dick was a Christ-like figure.
    • “Oy. So I’m going to try to give the other side of the story: what an essay really is, and how you write one. Or at least, how I write one.”
    • Metaphor of the river, the philosophy of writing.
    • Bolter- writing as a technology- hypertext is another way for writing to develop especially when linking.
    • Should we be analysing things that are more current apposed to classical literature? We need to do things that are ‘more valuable and worthwhile’
    • Writing an essay can help formulate your own ideas- however does the topic allow you to formulate your idea, to develop. Is the topic sentence merely a starting point that leads you to other more profound ideas and theories? i.e. river metaphor, allowing your thoughts to meander.
    • Is that a real essay? What allows it to say that it is real and others are not? It’s a different essay; there are many types of essay so that does not necessarily mean that it is real.

  7. August 23, 2013 by oliviapaterson

  8. Blog Audit

    August 22, 2013 by oliviapaterson

    Blog Audit


    Public humiliation-blog humiliation

    No negative repercussions

    If you’re dishonest you have to shout everyone/ Elliot a drinks, drugs, food

    Adrian will see how much or little we have done, this will give him something to speculate on. 

    Marks off

    Incremental decrease on marks


    We voted and came to the conclusion that there are no negative repercussions. Everyone gets 10.

    Also there will be no need to bring the participation forms, as everyone will be getting 10.  That would be a waste of trees.

  9. Naughty Boy-Lalala ft.Sam Smith

    August 14, 2013 by oliviapaterson

  10. Lecture Notes- Beta Symposium

    August 13, 2013 by oliviapaterson

    What is the practicality of design fiction for people who are not designers? What separates it from science fiction?

    • Science fiction is a good example of how we can implement the principles of design fiction.
    • Design fiction is about the broader ways of creating things. It does not rely on being evidence based.
    • Science fiction has its own hang-ups and traditions that differ from that of design fiction.
    • Design is fashionable… designers have the tools to solve problem within businesses or in the larger context of society. i.e asylum seekers, politicians find ways to ‘solve’ this problem but has it solved the overall issue? No.
    • Question. What do you think your job will look like in 2020? Will it still exist? Our problem is how will we make money?
    • Design fiction is a tool to dig ourselves out of a hole i.e housing commission and its effects on society. Was there social equality?
    • Design fiction is very humble it can be done in small increments, it is not neutral it is not trying to pretend that it will have the ultimate solution.
    • Designers look behind to see what has been done, they nearly always attempt to change and make better what has already been done. i.e Google, allowing 20% of their paid time to ‘play’… or speculative thinking.
    • Question. How does innovation occur? You can’t have one idea without the other?
    • As the Internet evolves it becomes easier to find out where you found the information but harder to remember what that information was.

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