Monday, December 12, 2011
This is much like that of modern day rappers such as Jay Z and P.Diddy who splash out thousands of dollars on throwing massive parties which they sometimes don't ever make appearances, like that of Gatsby. In addition to this like Gatsby, Jay Z and P.Diddy have earned some of their money through doing dodgy deals and shifty illegal occupations.
Another comparison which can be drawn between Gatsby, Jay Z and P.Diddy is all the rumors and speculations which surround them - with Gatsby it is because no one ever sees or talks to him and so don't take the time to find out the truth about who he is or how he has made his money. With Jay Z and P.Diddy its with the press who make up stories and make up relationships about them and other celebrities causing a rift in the celebrity network, who then print these stories in their magazines and papers - spreading the rumors.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Saturday, December 10, 2011
concern about people who are not in their social milieu. Nobody’s concerned about politics or spiritual matters but everybody cares about how they are perceived socially. Those who do come from other classes seek and envy the glamour and lifestyle that they see in the elite. Jay Gatsby, the protagonist, is able to attain a certain amount of wealth, but he cannot fake education or social behaviors that only come with "old money." The novel’s two main locales, West Egg and East Egg, are distinguished also by class. East Egg represents "old money" while West Egg represents the nouveau riche. East Eggers consistently look down on West Eggers for precisely this fact. Class and wealth are virtually indistinguishable from each other, but if a person lacks education, then he is clearly not part of the upper echelon.
biscuits but also created Topshop.
Friday, December 9, 2011
You can argue this applies within society similarly today. It’s for this reason I decided to research and write on American Socialites today in relation to the socialites in The Great Gatsby . Those who grow up with wealth do not feel the need to tastelessly show it off – at least to the same extent those new to it do – whereas those who are new to the socialite scene just superficially spend and show off their money in hopes of rising within the circle. A good example of this would be the (possibly “old”) Hollywood ‘IT’ crowd. While most were born into a wealthy family, if they are introduced to fame they suddenly become greedy for more and need to find ways of attracting it instead of working for it. The best example would be Kim Kardashian.
Introduced by Paris Hilton to the socialite scene, she didn’t become known until she released a sex tape, and then scored a reality TV show with E! a few months later. As she doesn’t really “work” (sex tape and reality TV show don't really count...) to earn her money and fame, she has to come up with new ways of gaining the public’s attention and “love” (or hate, which ever gets her attention) and has to out do herself each time. In contrast, often children born to "stars" usually don't choose a silimar life - those who have a brush with the police or try to follow their parents' legand might gain attention - and choose to keep privacy and use their inherited money wisely. Trying to bring up a good example is hard as they are hardy ever in the media once they're 10 or over.
The example of Kim Kardashian is true to The Great Gatsby painting of the new generation and newly rich kids being materialistic, vulgar and simplistic; while this is not true for not of them, it remains a growing fashion for alot of American Society and is now the American Dream for alot of American kids.
Monday, December 5, 2011
Sunday, December 4, 2011
The link above, is an animated Christmas TV advert, advertising the Apple Mac featuring the Mac’s rival, the pc. Two people are representing each, computer, the Mac represented by a a man who looks to be in his early twenties who is interested in putting his differences aside for the holiday season, and the PC who is represented by a much older man who displays bitterness towards the Mac in the advert.
Another advert I came across was this alternative advert in which PC asks Mac “Do you know why I love this time of year?” to which Mac replies “Because it’s the season of peace on earth?”, which ties in with the Mac representing the true meaning of Christmas to appeal to the public. PC instead replies “No it’s because we can be animated, and we can do anything”, and he proceeds to show Mac what he can do which could represent the arrogance of the company. Towards the end of the advert, a rabbit says he is going to the apple store to pick up some last minute gifts, to which PC pushes a snowman on to the rabbit. This could represent how the company wish to sabotage Apple, and don’t believe in an honest way of selling which in result gives Mac a honest and reliable image which the public would prefer.
I think the advert is effective as its main value is to promote its own product to sell, which it achieves. It does this in a clever way as through the PC character trying to promote itself at every opportunity we instead are attracted to the MAC who appears to value the public as people, rather than just for their money. This is ironic as the Apple Company have created this perhaps untrue bitter and money obsessed image for the PC, to shift opinions in their own favour. Through the portrayal of the PC character, Mac have managed to make all PC users into a stereotype, by using an old business man in a brown suit, which also creates the image of a mundane, everyday product. This contrasted against the Mac character who is described in the Mac vs. PC article as an '20-something, self satisfied hipster' poses the question who would you most want to be like?'.
The brand is now aimed directly at women for men, dominated by shaving soap and aftershave lotion. What's interesting is that the advert has applied to the changing statistics, that women make the majority population. It has found a way of attracting women to encourage men to purchase the product. What's resonant in the advert is that it is in keeping with American ideology. Giving a direct example to what women expect from men in society; handfuls of
The advert's title tells yous straight away that the ad is going to convey the notions of friendship, sharing, diversity and fun. You can tell the advert is modern by all the effects used, to pass the iPod and connect the people onscreen. Apple is a fairly modern company, and despite being founded in 1976-77, has gained really gained increased popularity in the last ten years - since the invention of the iPod. Since gaining popularity the company feels the constant need to update it's self and follow the technological demands of the world that we live in. This is shown by the fact the iPod now has a touch screen and more of the interesting apps shown in the advert.
Saturday, December 3, 2011
"SMIRNOFF is the world's number-one premium vodka brand, and it's important for us to communicate that in everything we do. In our continuous effort to assess our appeal, we recognized the need to update the SMIRNOFF image to make a contemporary statement about our portfolio of quality products. Consumers are more interested in premium brand attributes and our research reveals that our new look communicates to them this all important 'style' and 'quality' distinction."- Sharon Lichten, Smirnoff Brand Director.
Smirnoff Vodka is an iconic brand as many people all over the World recognise not only the brand but have tasted their drinks. Smirnoff has revamped the image of this iconic brand to reflect both the brand's Russian heritage and modern successes. The bottle is very creative and can almost be seen as being fashionable as the bottles features reflect broad shoulders something that is very much current in fashion design. The sharp colours used to represent all the different flavours and the logo draw inspiration from awards bestowed upon Pierre Smirnoff as an Official Purveyor of the Imperial Russian Court in the late 1880s.
http://www.smirnoff.com/en-us/main/drinks/cocktails/#product- U.S Smirnoff Products
CRAZY NIGHTS CAMPAIGN - http://www.smirnoff.com/en-us/main/bethere.aspx
“We see different people from different cultures not simply enjoying great nights-they're making them. From New York to Johannesburg to Bangkok, from intimate gatherings to concert halls, we've turned our camera on creative people around the world-hip hop artists, dancers, friends-creating extraordinary nights.”
These campaigns are interesting as they show case adults who are unique and different who enjoy dancing, signing showing off their talents no matter whom and what they are. The thing that joins them together is Smirnoff Vodka. The fact there are so many diverse people in this advert could represent the different flavours Smirnoff have to offer. Another way to look at the advert is that you need Smirnoff to have ‘An Extraordinary Night’ that you will never forget. Smirnoff Vodka is the choice of adults whether they are young or old enjoy socialising out with friends or at home having a quiet drink.
Monday, November 28, 2011
In this link the writer talks about how the myth of working hard to achieve what a person wants in life and going from 'rags to riches' became so popular. This was mainly due to the fact that back when Horatio Alger released his range of novels about his various rags to riches stories was at a time when anyone in society had an equal chance that if they worked hard then they would eventually make it to where they want to be in life. For example in the time when there was an industrial boom in America - this created many opportunities for practically anyone to become a businessman and so a very rich person because of this - having achieved the so called American Dream and proving the Horatio Alger myth right.
However this link (http://www.americansc.org.uk/online/American_Dream.htm) talks about how the American Dream has changed throughout the years, and the phrase 'pluck and luck' which Horatio was known for can be seen in this link in the sense that through the years the American Dream has changed and the 'luck' of winning things like the lottery, compensation lawsuits or taking part in big time game shows has replaced the sense of the Horatio Alger myth in the sense that the social divide between the rich and the poor has become to large for this myth to still exist and has been replaced with get more get rich quick sqhemes.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
Alger's stories including ‘Ragged Dick’ have inspired generations of people to strive for greatness, no matter the odds. The young adolescent ‘Richard Hunter’ struggles against poverty and adversity to rise to success through hard work, determination, courage, and honesty.
The website I have looked at focuses on people who have had simple or hard early childhood problems but have not let them use these as permanent deterrents in their lives. This website reinforces the myth and strengthens the saying that ‘it’s not how you start but how you finish, that counts’. The writer also suggests that young people need to remember Horatio Alger stories as they provide hope but also freedom and that their dreams if they work hard enough can relate into reality. ‘Through hard work, perseverance, and character.’ All characteristics that help ‘Ragged Dick' empower himself. The writer Daniel McLaughlin, clearly believes in the Horatio Myth as he declares that he has seen it happen as he writes about his own personal account of someone who turned their life from ‘rag’s to riches’.
However, an interesting point to make it that Horatio Alger American dream consisted of ‘Ragged Dick’ getting an education, getting a job that pays enough for him to support himself, something that everyday people achieve. The Horatio myth can be seen to have changed as Daniel McLaughlin views it as only being reserved for people who now make millions or billions people like the guy who owns Microsoft, KFC and Tiger Woods.
Saturday, November 26, 2011
The ‘Horatio Alger myth’ is a criticism of the ‘rags to riches’ message throughout Alger’s books, which is the idea that someone from a poor background can achieve success through hard work and determination.
I looked at the website http://www.fightbacknews.org/2004/01winter/algermyth.htm which was a short news article written by Adam Price, looking at the ‘Horatio Alger Myth’ and used it in relation to the story of ‘Ragged Dick’, which portrays Dick, a young bootblack, and his story to success.
The article supported the idea of ‘rags to riches’ which can be shown through the quote ‘Many poor and working class Americans did achieve a better way of life, buying a house and sending their children to college’. However it seems Price does not agree with the concept behind this of ‘luck and pluck’ which drives the characters in stories such as ‘Ragged Dick’ to succeed stating that the American Public’s success ‘had less to do with luck and a wealthy patron’. This can be seen in ‘Ragged Dick’ which contains many scenarios which appear to be due to ‘luck’, in particular where the character of Dick stumbles upon Mr Whitney in the first chapter by chance who gives him new clothes and money. Mr Whitby stirred a change in Dick as he took his advice, which led him to stop spending his money and to open a savings account, without this event perhaps Dick would have continued spending his money and stayed in the same position for most of his life, supporting the idea of luck having a positive effect on the ‘rags to riches’ idea. Price believes the success of the public had more to do with the strength of unions who forced businesses to pay a living way and the expansion of public colleges and universities rather than this idea.
I think it is hard to relate to the stories of Horatio Alger today due to the high standards of the public. Gaining a job as a clerk for $10 an hour as Dick does in ‘Ragged Dick’ would not be considered as a success in the modern world today, as the character has not become ‘rich’ as the phrase ‘rags to riches’ suggests, he has merely secured a low-level job in a company. With evidence shown in the article such as ‘Only 10% of less educated poor fathers have very successful sons’ it supports the idea of ‘Rags to riches’ idea no longer existing.
Monday, November 21, 2011
Saturday, November 19, 2011
It was really hard trying to find a website that was dedicated towards gun control but I did manage to find one. http://www.a-human-right.com/views2.html
This was one of the best websites I found as it was quite interesting as the website kind of convinces you to buy a gun. It does this by listing all these questions and you have a multiple choice answers but the one you pick or choose are the ones that make owing a gun sound more appealing. For example: Given a choice, I would prefer to defend myself with...
· my bare hands
· an ineffective weapon, such as pepper spray
· an effective weapon, such as a firearm
This video starts out really interesting as it’s a bullet being fired at all these random food and drink objects, when the bullet makes contact with the object they make all these different and exciting shapes. This could represent the beginning time when someone buys a gun, its new very
innocent school children die because someone managed to easily obtain a gun and takes out their frustration on school mates and teachers.
Comparing the Websites…
At first the Pro Gun control website made me realise that owing a gun might not be that bad however, watching the video made me see sense and that ultimately owing a gun is dangerous and has the potential to kill innocent victims. It then made me think that the Pro Gun control website doesn’t take into consideration of when gun usage has gone terribly wrong. Even though many people when first owning a gun wouldn’t think of hurting innocent people and they would still remain a peaceful person. However, you are more likely to kill or injure your own family member than a criminal.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Anti Gun Control
The website relies heavily on the support of the public shown through the headings such as ‘Take Action’, ‘Join GOA’ and mentioning the public as having a ‘central role’ driving the point of ‘the united voice’ in order to get results. It contains news reports, a radio station and a store where the public can buy various
The feature I liked most about the website was the Source Studies page, which detailed studies that support the use of guns, which I thought was important as it actually provided reliable evidence, rather than just opinions. One I found particularly interesting was the ‘International Crime Victim Study’, which declared
The website tries its best to influence the public through bold writing such as ‘Enough is Enough’ and facts at the top of each page such as the one below, creating the feeling of urgency.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
A civilian burial party and U.S. Army officers pose over a mass grave trench with bodies of Native American Lakota Sioux killed at Wounded Knee, Pine Ridge Reservation, South Dakota. 1890
This picture was taken by North-western Photographic Co. at the end of the Battle of Wounded Knee, it shows just how catastrophic the battle was for many Native Americans as over 200 Sioux Indians were killed. The Indians were being held there by soldiers because they believed that the Native Indians were preparing for an armed rebellion. Shooting started when a Sioux Indian resisted surrendering his weapon to the army. In a struggle with several soldiers his gun fired turning a tense situation into chaotic fighting. Many out of control soldiers shot at unarmed and retreating Indians such as women and children who tried to flee the scene. The burial pit is quite deep reinforcing the view that Wounded Knee was more of a Massacre than a battle where a whole Tribe was almost wiped out. The picture shows many soldiers standing over the grave looking at the camera, posing for the picture emphasising their lack of respect towards many Natives and showing that they viewed them as savages or dogs that had to be ‘put down’. There is no remorse or guilt on their faces reinforcing the idea that many American people felt the need to get rid of the Natives as they had no place, did not belong and were only in the way of western expansion. The dead bodies are also just placed in one big dump reinforcing the fact that the army just doesn't care.
The fact that so many Natives where killed compared to the troopers suggests that the Native Americans where at a real disadvantage the picture reflects this as all the troopers have guns and weapons in their hands. Furthermore, the Natives didn’t really stand a chance against the soldiers as they were all men, whereas in the Native American tribe there were a number of innocent women and children.
Upon more research of the artist and his other drawings/paintings of Native Americans, it seemed to me that they were just sketches he'd draw on observing them. They all are wearing shirts - one with a belt [see below for reference!] and the other was entitled "Untitled Study of a Native American". Perhaps all we can really tell from this photos is an honest image (in comparison to some around this time), in which the Indians are more westernised than they were before the settlers.
Without knowing the history of this painting it shows the white settlers going in for battle against the natives and that the natives are turning and running from them in order to stand a chance. However the absence of any native women or children indicates that this is a sort of pre-arranged attack on a battle field, and so the white settlers haven't actually invaded the natives home tribe. From looking at the picture it seems that it was the native Americans who were the ones to start this particular conflict as the central native in the red looks as if he has gone ahead, attempted to spy on the white settlers and then retreated. As well as this it seems that they both have arrived in a potential space to battle as the white settlers are lined up along the left and the natives lined up along the right ready to fight.
However it seems that the natives wern't expecting so many white settlers and for them to have such advanced weaponry - and so once they realised that they didn't stand much of a chance - Begin to run in retreat. It looks like the white settlers are very calm and confident with their numbers and weaponry and so don't actually look like they are putting much strategy into the battle itself as they can already predict the outcome. Whereas the natives look like they've been taken by surprise by the confidence of the white settlers and are instead turning and running from them rather than continuing with the fight. At this point in the conflict they have one casualty east although looking further into the picture the army of white settlers seem to be more organised and look as if they are in battle formation, with a soldier in the centre of the picture looks like hes about to kill another native.
The painting very much centres on the chief and the act of painting by Catlin, potrayed by the glow the figure of the chief and the canvas seem to give off. This can be contrasted to the dull colour of the tribe which causes them to almost blend into one other. Catlin's european clothing is starkly contrasted with the elaborate clothing of the chief, which is very detailed unlike that of Catlin and also the tribe around him. Most of the tribe are sitting down or potrayed as stooping, causing the effect of the chief to appear as the tallest. He is also central to the painting and potrayed in a noble stance, suggesting importance. Many members of the tribe are displayed with open mouths and most seem to be watching Catlin closely suggesting they are in awe of the activity. This represents the simplicity of the Native American way of life who would not have watched an activity such as this and would have found this experience entirely new.
Many members of the tribe are displayed with weapons, Catlin is surrounded by people with bows and arrows and the chief is holding a spear. Although weaponry is primarily linked to violence, the painting gives off a sense of serenity and comfort. Catlin is clearly at ease with the tribe, and they are the same with him. This shows that the Native Americans were not always the savage and fierce characters they were often depicted to be.
Saturday, November 12, 2011
For a few reasons it seems difficult to accept much accuracy from this image. The connotations it brings are quite important though. In terms of it's accuracy, the clothes seem to be far too bright in colour. They seem to have been enhanced and as a consequence, are more European, or British even. His clothes are royal blue and red in colour, when they would much more likely to be a beige. Wi Jun Jon by George Catlin demonstrated more clearly what the attire specifically looked like. This is most definitely, an interpretation.
Sunday, November 6, 2011
The Tea Party believes, that a small government that has checks and balances to prevent a small number of people having too much power is a successful government and the video persuades watchers to believe this when comparing it to a soviet or communist government. Whittle lists example of poor governed countries that have failed to change real human nature, introduce communism and socialism as having been unsuccessful, for example the Russian Rev. Britain in the 60s-70s, the French Rev, Cuban communism and many more. This persuades watchers to believe and support the Tea Party but this view is biased as he doesn’t list countries that have
been successful in other political ideologies.
Also Whittle suggests that in reality human nature can’t change as people will always be motivated by self interest nevertheless, this is a generalization as not everyone acts like this as more people can be seen as becoming publicly involved and less self indulgent. This leads on to the Tea Party second core belief, free enterprise. Once again when making his point Whittle assumes the government projects and services as being useless, a disappointment and generally a pain in people lives. Instead he ‘glams up’ private business as being ‘faster, friendlier and having better services’ as it can be seen as being a ‘miracle.’ This assumption is misleading as what’s to say you won’t get a good customer service in post office and a poor service with FedEx. Also The Tea party paints the government as being controlling as they suggest the government can ‘take your many at gun point’ whilst private business is the way forward and better for
The main feature of the site that I was first drawn to was how patriotic it is with the red, white and blue colour scheme with the stars and stripes in the main banner background. In the video clips, they use phrases like 'we the people' and how they are fighting and trying to preserve their sense of freedom. After the colours on the site you are drawn to this main video clip - where all around it there are links to sign up and donate/contribute to the Tea Party which is mainly what the website has been set up to achieve
Along the right hand side of the page are many additional links including - About us (TheTeaParty.net organisation), Join the Movement, Who to Vote For, Tea Party Calender, Forum etc - which all offer a wide range of information on what the TeaParty.net are trying to achieve and how others can get involved in their cause.
The site itself is very easy to navigate and is very user friendly - it makes it easy for anyone to find out about the Tea Party movement and how they could get involved if they wanted, as well as a forum where others are able to express their views and opinions with other like minded people. TheTeaParty.net is also a good web page as it offers a range of different media features (eg - videos, text, pictures etc) and so will be able to attract a wider audience as their messages are very easy to get across to everyone.
Saturday, November 5, 2011
On first clicking on the website i was immedietly drawn to the recurring image of the 'stars and stripes' which I felt encouraged a sense of patriotism, through the image of the Tea Party representing the country. I thought patriotism was a good aspect to use as it is a vital and natural part of the american way of life and by using it in this way presents the Tea Party as the 'natural' path to America's improvement, thus appealing to the public. The phrase displayed on the left hand side of the website and repeated on other pages throughout, further enhances this idea,
Sunday, October 30, 2011
This is shown in the success of Hugh Laurie who is hugely talented as he is an English actor, voice artist, comedian, writer, musician, recording artist and director and so is hugely successful in both England and America. Since 2010 Hugh has been the highest paid actor in a drama series on US television and has also been listed in 2012 Guinness Book of World Records as the highest paid actor in a TV Drama where he earns around $700,000 per episode he does in the US drama House. Providing evidence to Crevecoeur's view that anyone can go to America, can start afresh and earn four or five times more money.
Another example of this is Mark Zuckerberg (co-creater of the social networking site Facebook) who although is from America, is only 27 and yet at such a young age his estimated personal worth is $17.5 billion. Giving the impression that America provides all the neccessary oportunites for anyone to do what ever they want from this reep the benefits very quickly, earning much more then they would be able to anywhere else.
Crevecoeur’s ‘Letters from an American Farmer’ puts forward the ideas that if you work hard and to the best of you’re ability, you can achieve great things in
I think the phrase on pg 44 ‘The American is a new man, who acts upon new principles; he must therefore entertain new ideas and form new opinions’, made me think instantly of Obama. Obama I feel, represents the new vision of
“It took a lot of blood, sweat and tears to get to where we are today, but we have just begun. Today we begin in earnest the work of making sure that the world we leave our children is just a little bit better than the one we inhabit today.”
Here, Obama appreciates the hard work from the past and preaches how the nation has to work together to achieve the change in
Talking to Glamour magazine, the pop starlet revealed that the Californian sunshine has made her "feel alive".
De Crevecoeur writes about America being the land of new opportunities a land of promise for those who are willing to work hard ‘search for the subterranean riches it no doubt contains’ ( p16); they will ultimately live a better life than in their previous homeland. Cheryl Cole can be seen as falling into his trap as she decided to up root her successful life in London and move to L.A. The main reason she left was to kick start her singing and popularity career believing that America held that promise. To this day many singers who have once conquered the U.K look to states as their next goal, believing that they will achieve more fame, more money living a better life (Tine Tempah and Adele). Another reason why Cheryl Cole fits in with De Crevecoeur would be because she changed who she was so she would be more appreciated and welcomed by American Society almost becoming American, she had many speech lessons to try and change her Geordie accent.
"I kind of have to change the way I speak. I used to hear British people and think, 'Ugh, why are you saying 'take out the trash'? But I had this thing the other day because I'd said 'quarter past one' and they didn't get it.’’
Looking at the picture Cheryl shows an unbelievable similarity as an American actress, gone is
the sleek hair and mini-dress, in their place is a huge bouffant hairdo and purple flares. Cheryl Cole tried to reinvent herself as something new and improved something the American people would try and accept and like. De Crevecoeur writes that the new people who come and settle
in America will become a new born American, thinking like Americans. ‘An American who leaving behind him all his antient prejudices and manners, receives new ones from the new mode he has embraced…The American is a new man, who acts upon new principles; he must therefore entertain new ideas and form new opinions.’
Saturday, October 29, 2011
In the news release with “Dhaka Dust” Ms. Ahmed poses a question that is not often asked: “What does it mean to be a Philadelphia-born Bangladeshi-American woman, a writer of color with a Muslim surname raised in small Midwestern towns?” “Dhaka Dust,” winner of the 2010 Bakeless Prize for poetry, is her attempt at an answer. Though she’s American, Ms. Ahmed makes it clear that she’s been honed and haunted by her ghost homeland, Bangladesh. But that knowledge offers small solace, only dual exile:
My sister hisses, they know
by your walk you aren’t
from here, never mind
your dark hair, your skin.
(in “Dhaka Bazaar before Departure).She understands that she’s dust, not unlike the Depression-era Okie dust of Woody Guthrie’s “Dust Bowl Ballads”: She’s dust whipped across continents to land in, of all places, Ohio; dark-skinned dust to be spurned, shunned or boot-heeled; immigrant Muslim dust that is feared but also fears.
There are many ways America can be "new" and "exceptional" in contrast to other countries, but the one it prides itself on the most is it's liberal acceptance of all peoples. It doesn't matter what you were in the past or where you're from - you are going to be equally accepted as a new person once you're American. De Crevecouer states in Letters from an American farmer his vision that he will be accepted by the Americans, and "be adopted soon after our arrival". America still prides itself on this today, and are proud to have an African-American president to show the equality. However, despite what America as a whole claims - a lot of the people don't see and treat their neighbours equally within American towns and cities. It is not as "new", "exceptional" and as liberal as it claims it is and as the vision most likely soon disappears. On the other hand, The Media and Hollywood also still promotes equality and idealistic liberal ideas to American Citizens causing the vision to be there in the first place to those outside of America, still making America "new" and "exceptional" to others, and those who live in it and believe it.