Thursday, September 17, 2009

Digging Deeper into Vonnegut's Sirens of Titan

In class short essay on predicting how does the pageant fit into Rumfoord's overall goal in Sirens of Titan?.
[Pageant is the ending point to human history--banished inequality]
Discussion of short essay in class:
1) Rumfoord's deterministic view
2) Plan to banish what Beatrice (excess of reluctance; purity) and Malachi Constant(selfishness)represent
3) Malachi has unfair advantages; does nothing with what these advantages
His life parallel Jonah's story - he runs away from his destiny; cannot escape his fate --gets swallowed by a spaceship (The Whale)
4) Rumfoord sends away from Earth Beatrice and the Space Wanderer--gross self-indulgence
5) other parts of the plan:
How will humanity become united? Will feel unified by slaughtering Martians and promote a sense of collective guilt.
Development of a new Church of God of the Utterly Indifferent. see pp.218 - description of an apathetic creator; purpose is to do good without doing harm (like Boaz). If you don't have God, who do you have? Must take responsibility for ourselves and help each other.

Friday Town Hall Meeting.

Monday excursion to Adler Planetarium. Journal assignment at the Adler Planetarium.

What would Vonnegut's answers be to the questions:
Who am I?
Gigantic indifferent universe
Earth has some importance
We are stuck in an unchangeable course

Where am I?
We are specks in the universe with no significance?
We are victims of a series of accidents
Human nature is brutal, violent, and self-destructive

What am I for?

Ending violence
Uniting humanity

Do the means justify the ends?

Feedback on Active Reading:
Have you been interacting with the text in a meaningful way? Goal is to ask questions of the text and connect the text to other texts.

Science Lab: Light Spectrum

Library lesson: How to find article on Paradigm shifts.

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