About Me – Tyler Swanbeck

Hi my name is Tyler Swanbeck. I am a junior at Hebron Academy, and I am 17 years old. I love soccer, being a scholar, and I enjoy long walks on the beach. One of my favorite classes is Honors American Literature, and I really enjoy active reading! Some of my hobbies include whistling and hanging out with my brothers.

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About YingQiao

Hi, My name is YingQiao Wang, obviously:)

I’m a junior at Hebron Academy, and a person who has interests in science, music, sports and sleep. I can sleep for more than 12 hours. I’m good at chemistry, physics, biology, and math. I love rock, pop, classical music, and I can play snare drum, drum set, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, and piano. I also love sports, for example, basketball and soccer. Helping people is also what I do in my daily life, but nobody seems to remember any of them. Also, I’m extremely passion in computer science and has the determination to learn computer science in the future. I can use Java and C programming language. I wrote some stupid games on Scratch and on my computer, so if you want to play it, contact me. (I will not give to you anyway:) just kidding) This year I submitted an article to Hebron Review, which is exciting cause I would never know that I have talent in writing…..:)

Although I’m the one who uploaded several essays on the blog, I’m actually not a humanity person from the outset of my life. I serious doubted my English and History ability when I was in middle school. When I read the book called The Things They Carried, I truly understood what the literature, and humanity classes mean. It completes a person emotionally, and It is as important as any science class.

In the American Literature Honor class(harder than AP English… don’t take it), we wrote a lot of papers in this class. I have some my favorite paper, which you will see in this blog. Don’t swear in front of the computer if you found my paper like a crap, and please don’t stop complimenting me if you found it interesting.

All the things above is just a really small part of me, I can not recall anymore stuffs right now because my teacher is urging me to submit this post and also, I have been too busy this few month (a research done by Harvard University said that a long busy time makes you stupid and I’m definitely an example of this) So if you want to know more about me, come and find me:)

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About Me- Ryan Kappelmann

Hello, my name is Ryan Kappelmann. I am a junior at Hebron Academy and I am 18 years old. I enjoy Math and hope to study sports management or business in the future. My true passion is baseball and hope to continue into college. For writing, I have a very strong narrative voice and use humor well in my writing. I like to include my family and personal life in my writing as well.  My other interests are golf, hockey and music. Thank you.

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“The Things I Carried”

The Things I Carried

I’m fortunate; not only because I don’t need to worry what to eat, what to wear and where to live, but I had this chance to study abroad. This chance seems really honorable, but this is actually a pressure that I carried along the way. It takes a lot of money and courage to send a kid abroad, and my parents thought in the same way, too. They earned every cent of my tuition, and they had that courage to send me abroad, to let me pursue a brighter future. So I don’t want to fail, but the situation I’m in indeed gave me a lot of pressure, as I carried this pressure along with every day of my life abroad.

Everything started from the vacation at the end of my 7th Grade. I told my parents that I had an idea of studying abroad. I told them when they picked me up at the end of the school year to go back to my house. I can still remember their reaction: my mom froze for a second, but she suddenly hid her emotion and smiled very reluctantly. She then asked:

“Oh, do you want to go abroad now?”

“Yes, mom. I think it will be better for my future.” I leaned forward suddenly and answered.

“Ok, Let me and your dad think about it, but start your preparation now in case we agree,” my mom answered.

She answered happily, but still, she was worrying something. I could not tell, but I felt that this is not how they usually talk with me when we were talking happy things. I went on preparing for the standardized tests anyway.

Things changed after a night. I fell asleep early because I was stressed out on preparing for these standardized tests. I woke up at midnight, and I had to go to the bathroom. It’s dark everywhere. I could not see anything. It must have been a midnight and I bumped my head on the wall when I was trying to go to the bathroom. The light in the bathroom almost killed me, I fell back a little, because my eyes hurt a lot when I suddenly saw that strong light after a really deep sleep. When I walked back to my room, I heard something that changed my whole life. My dad and mom were still talking at this time. They did not sleep. I can still remember what they said:

“Why is he trying to study abroad? We already said that we will send him abroad when he is attending college. We don’t have money to send him abroad right now. I still need money for business. We don’t have that much money to use” my dad said with concern.

My mom sighed and answered: “I know, but I don’t want him to be disappointed. He had the idea to study abroad and I want to support him. I want to give him a chance to pursue a better future and not repress his desire to be better. Yeah, I just don’t want to let him down.”

“But you know it’s hard for us now to afford this, right?”

“Yes, but it’s worth trying. If we can’t, we can sell our car or house back in our hometown to afford this. We need to send him. It’s his own desire to study abroad, and I don’t want to let him down.”

I froze for a long time standing on the side of that closed door. I could still remember the worries in their tone, and that sigh from my mother. I can not forget it. I feel guilty now for adding too much pressure on this whole family. I feel like I’m a person who committed a crime. I made my parents worry and they could not fall asleep at midnight. On the second day, when I saw them, It seemed like there were more wrinkles on my mom’s face, and my dad’s head became more bald. I never noticed these changes before, but now I understood it all. They worked so hard for me, but I’m just a normal student that probably have no value to this society. When they hugged me and said that they supported my decision, I didn’t know what to say. I feel that my world suddenly turns upside down. The guilt is everywhere, I was squeezed into a corner, feeling guilty and helpless. I don’t want to tell them that I heard all the things they talked last night, and their smile is just a nightmare to me. I know that the smile they showed me means the worries they had on business, the worries they had at night.

The only thing I could think of is to study hard to make my future more bright and to make them happy. I didn’t want to reject their support because I didn’t want them to worry about more things. I felt pumped by their support, hope, and love. I started to study really hard to get into a school in America. I made a study plan for a year. I gave up my Chinese class and English class to study these tests, or English. My English level at that time stayed on a level that can only greet people. I could not do any academic work, I could not even talk with Americans. I can still remember how I practiced Listening for TOEFL: I bought a notebook, and I downloaded some TOEFL lectures. After remembering a lot of TOEFL vocabulary, I started to write down what the lectures said on that notebook. It’s a boring and stressful process. I can still remember how I write down a biology lecture. That was a Sunday afternoon, the sun was hanging upon the sky, but I chose to lock myself in my room. I opened my phone, tapped a random lecture. When I heard the first sentence, I froze. The lecturer said: “Today, we are going to talk about re—.” I clicked the stop and thought: “What is this?” I moved the cursor back to the beginning. “Today, we are going to talk about retro–v—” I clicked the stop and don’t know what is that word started with R. I moved the cursor back to the beginning. “Today, we are going to talk about retrovirus, the retrovirus is a kind of virus that has en—-” I clicked the stop again, thought: “Ok, that is retrovirus, but what is that word started with E?” I moved the cursor back to the beginning and listened again. “Today, we are going to talk about retrovirus. Retrovirus is a kind of virus that has en—-” I clicked the stop button. “What is that word starts with E? I can not figure it out!” Then I chose to slow the lecture down and clicked play again. “Today, we are going to talk about retrovirus. Retrovirus is a kind of virus that has en——–” I could not stand it anymore. I was clicking that stop button like I was going to pierce it. I yelled: “What is that E word? Why can’t I figure it out, even though I have already slowed the lecture down a lot? ” I decided to rest a little because that E word broke my heart. When I looked up, the sun was hiding into the ground. After this heartbreaking lecture, I had an idea of giving up, but I quickly realized that I’m not only studying for myself, but also studying for our family, because I was the only hope for my family. They put everything on me, now it was time for me to make them proud and happy.

As people said, a hardworking person always has a better result at the end. I received an offer from Hebron Academy at the end, and more worries things are that my parents now has money to afford my tuition because their business was growing big. Now looking back to what happened before I came here, I still feel lucky and blessed. We don’t need to sell our cars or houses anymore, as my parents now earned a lot of money that is enough for the rest of their life probably. I also knew what that E word is: it is Enzyme. But I still can remember what they said at that midnight, what I carried along the way. I work hard on everything, because there’s not only me standing on my side, but also my parents, and their hope and love. I can not, and I never would depress them.

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Characterization Essay

Imagine being pressured into doing something you don’t like or agree with. Something you despise and from which you take no advantage. Something that goes against your human instinct. For Paul, that something was to participate in a war. In All Quiet on the Western Front by German author Erich Maria Remarque, we learn about the experiences of young soldiers during the First World War. Their everyday situations and thoughts develop throughout the book and create a picture of how it really was during this tough and devastating time. The novel gives a sense of what the soldiers went through, even though it’s something individuals can only truly understand if they go through it. Paul, the main character of the book, is an independent, compassionate and intelligent man. As the men go through training and experience their first battle, they realize that emotional investment doesn’t suit the lifestyle of a soldier. When going into war, one can only rely on themselves to survive. When stating “We were all at once terribly alone; and alone we must see it through” (Remarque 12) Paul acknowledges the loneliness one must go through in order to mentally survive the war, because if you make too strong connections with someone losing them might hurt you more than a bullet. That is proved towards the end, when Paul finds himself alone having lost almost every person significant to him in the war.
While returning to his home during his leave, the relationship between Paul and his mother has changed. He no longer lets her take care of him like she used to. As she tries to comfort him, Paul makes a great effort to deny his mother’s love in order to maintain his calm appearance. “Ah, Mother, Mother! Why do I not take you in my arms and die with you. What poor wretches we are!” (Remarque 183) in saying this, Paul rejects his mother’s love and comforting. He feels as if he’s better off acting like he can handle everything alone. The truth is that all he wants to do is leave everything behind and stay in the arms of his mother. He wants to be comforted and taken care of, like when he was a child. Though, that’s not what he does. Instead he pushes her worries away and denies them, in order to continue his act of independence and maturity. The intelligence that was once useful in school proofs to be useless in the front. Everything the boys had learned about math and French mean nothing when they’re faced with a bombardment and have to use their new knowledge in order to survive. In saying “At first astonished, then embittered, and finally indifferent, we recognized that what matters is not the mind but the boot brush, not intelligence but the system, not freedom but drill” (Remarque 22) Paul shows his change in intelligence. What he learned in school has no value anymore. The only intelligence that is necessary to him is what the army has taught him, which has nothing to do with solving mathematical equations or practicing French verbs. It’s rather about how to survive, and what Paul has to do in order to please the army. His definition of intelligence changed along with the war. When coming across the opportunity, Paul would sacrifice something that used to carry value in order to get new equipment. Along with this, Paul becomes ambiguous and his humane side weakens. As Paul says “Only the facts are real and important for us. And good boots are scarce” (Remarque 21) he shows what has now gained value, which is good protection and skills. That he is indifferent towards people, but undeniably desperate for the materialistics, such as the boots. Even though the war has scarred his humanity, Paul has moments when he becomes compassionate and sympathetic. One night, Paul and his fellow comrade Kat cook a goose under an open fire. After eating for a while Paul says:”How would it be, Kat if we took a bit to Kropp and Tjaden?” (Remarque 96) By giving his friends pieces of food, when they already have very little of it, Paul shows compassion to his fellow comrades.
Paul has a moment of realization where he thinks “Why do they never tell us that you are poor devils like us, that your mothers are just as anxious as ours, and that we have the same fear of death, and the same dying and the same agony- Forgive me, comrade; how could you be my enemy?” (Remarque 223) He realizes that his true enemies aren’t the people he’s killing, and fighting; it’s the army and the people telling him to kill others when they’re all equal to him. It doesn’t feel right anymore to end the lives of soldiers who have feelings, just as he does. As the novel progresses, Paul shows qualities of independence by rejecting the comforting of his mother and in his pursuit of going his own path. Although rarely, Paul puts away his masculine and brave side to show qualities of compassion. When in need, he always helps his friends and fellow comrades. He looks out for them, and treats them as if they were family. He comes to the devastating conclusion that the people he’s fighting against aren’t his true enemies; the generals and officers commanding and forcing him to fight them are. He’s just a citizen fulfilling his duty, as are everyone else in the battles. A new intelligence has taken the place of the knowledge he previously learned during his academic life. What he used to know and like has no value anymore. The poems he used to so passionately adore don’t carry meaning when he’s standing in the front, fighting for his life. All of these qualities make up to the courageous, kind and clever fighting warrior; Paul Baümer.

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Horror Story: the Butcher’s House

He heard them. The voices were getting louder and louder, and his heartbeat increased with every step. His breath was almost as loud as his pulse. His glasses laid broken on a rock beside him. The absence of his glasses caused his vision to become blurry. His torso was turned to the side, with his right leg stuck under a heavy branch, which had fallen during his sprint toward the shed. He covered most of his body with leafs as a disguise that would hopefully help him avoid his predators. He knew it was late, since hours had passed since the sunset.The leafs crinkled underneath their feet as he heard them walking deeper into the dark forest. After some time, the sound passed and he began the process of pulling his injured leg out. As he tried to move it, he noticed some twigs got stuck in his thigh. The blood was dripping onto the ground and soaking his jeans. He was breathing heavily as he desperately pushed the branch away from his leg. The jeans were ripped where the twigs had been, and left open wounds of flesh. A mixture of blood and sweat was pouring from his face and into his eyes. He tried standing up and slowly continue his movement toward the shed, but it became a more difficult task with his leg dragging behind him. Upon turning around, he squinted his eyes and saw three black figures in the distance, and decided to walk in the opposite direction. He struggled to move, and his limping resulted in him falling into a ditch filled with mud.
He pulled himself out of the mud and ran for the tree line. The rain beat down and blood washed into his eyes, making it harder and harder to find the entrance to the path. He was breathing loud. He tried to stop it, to control it, to hide it, but it was too much. He found the entrance to the path and ran followed it till he reached the old shed. He crashed through the door and slammed it shut. He tried to barricade it with the rakes, and the pitchforks, but it was not possible. He could hear them outside now. They were here. They were just outside. He pushed himself against the door, grasping a pitchfork…wiping the blood away from his eyes. Waiting, he discovered a sudden silence. The only thing that could be heard were the rhythmical drops of rain dripping into a bucket. The silence was soon interrupted by a loud knocking on the door. His head desperately looked around the seemingly empty shed, only to find a broken hockey stick. He picked it up and held it tightly to his chest. The knocking continued, and his hold on the broken stick intensified. As he shifted to the side, the door forcefully opened and the three dark shadows entered. The single beam of light reflected on the object one of them was holding. It appeared to be a steak knife. The stick was grabbed from his firm hold, and smashed into his head. He fell onto the ground unconscious.  When awoke he found himself sitting in the middle of the basement of his house. The previous owner had been a butcher, and used the basement as the slaughter area. He repeatedly blinked his eyes in an attempt to clear his vision. Around him hung sharp knifes and blades, and on the table in front of him laid scalpels of various sizes. He tried to speak, to yell for help, but a cloth was stuffed in his mouth with tape wrapped around it. His hands and legs were tied to the chair he was sitting on. A woman appeared in front of him. She was wearing a mask with the face of a clown. She tilted her head as she looked at him, and let her fingers trace the handles of the scalpels on the table. She stopped on the last one and picked it up. Slowly, she rolled up her sleeve and began to cut the inside of her arm. The blood seeped out and dripped onto the floor. A creaking noise emerged from the corner of the room. A man with the same mask was rocking on a chair with a clown doll in his lap. The man tied up in the chair was nervous and confused of what was about to happen. The anxiety grew and his heart beated impossibly fast. Finally, the third figure entered the room. It was another man carrying multiple boxes in his hands. He had a tattoo of a cross on his right arm. He too was wearing a clown mask. The masked man and woman whispered to each other, before simultaneously walking out of the room. The man desperately tried to release himself from the chair, only to be left with disappointment a frustration. The man in the corner continued to rock back and forth while petting the doll. After a while, the man with the doll got up and left as well. He was confused by this, and decided to continue freeing his hands. His actions were interrupted by the three of them re entering the room.
-It’s time, said the woman and they all gathered around the table. They picked up one each, and one of the men walked closer to the chair.
-If you’re loud I will cut deeper, he said with joy in his voice, he grabbed his leg and used the scalpel to cut the thigh. The man screamed, and so the cut got deeper. Next came the woman and used a smaller scalpel.
-You have such beautiful eyes. I think it’s time you share them, she said and grabbed his face to cut his left eye out. Because of the man’s resistance, the three masked people all held him as the woman slowly cut out the eye.
Blood was gushing out, and the wound was left exposed. The man whimpered and cried.
-My turn, said the man with the doll. He grabbed a scalpel and walked up to the man. He inspected him, and decided what his move was going to be.
-We haven’t got a hand yet! he exclaimed and switched to a saw-like object. All of them held onto the man’s shoulders as he pushed the saw back and forth into his flesh until the hand came off.
-I think it’s time for an ear, said the tattooed man, and proceeded to cut off his ear. Afterwards, they placed all of the parts into individual boxes. At this point, the man had passed out due to all the pain. As he woke up, he was hanging upside down, next to a corpse with body parts missing. the repulsive smell of death had filled the room entirely. The doll the man was holding seemed to have adjustments. It now had a new eye and ear on it. The cloth had been removed from his mouth, and he was finally able to speak.
-Please let me go, said the man exhaustedly.
-We’re not finished with you yet, said the woman and continued to clean the scalpels with dish detergent. The windows let in the light from the sunrise. The man continued hanging helplessly from the ceiling, numb from any pain in his body. All he could do was cling onto the hope of being rescued, but that hope was soon taken away from him as he felt his heart beating slower and slower, and his one eye closing shut.

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Sin $101

When I walked in, it was just a normal day. I was completely oblivious of what was to happen in the next few hours. Halley routinely grabbed a shopping cart and offered me a seat in it, as she always did. I clumsily climbed into the cart, and just like that my destiny was set. How we came about the idea is a blur to me, but after we started we never stopped. Before anything happened, we were blissfully strolling about the store, when two young men walked by with suspicious but playful looks on their faces. I didn’t think much of it, not even after the second, third or fourth time seeing them. We continued walking, collecting more petty things and putting them with me in the shopping cart. It was my job to remove the goods from their packaging, in order to prevent the beeping when walking out of the store. Iulia took out her phone and put on familiar tunes that we all sang along with. We were almost done, finding that there wasn’t anything left that we desired, as we came across the pharmaceutical section. We had all heard rumors and talks of what cough syrup did if it was misused, but our curious and foolish minds decided that we wanted to see it for ourselves. We knew exactly what we were doing, we were just unaware of the consequences. After at least paying for the hangers, we sat down at Dunkin Donuts, exhausted from all the walking and with my fingers sore from carefully tearing apart packet after packet. We continued playing our songs, murmuring the familiar words, and waving at Ms. Waterman who was standing a few feet away, talking on the phone. With almost fifteen minutes to spare, we finally began exiting Walmart and walking towards the bus. What happened next is something that makes me close my eyes and tighten my shoulder in agony every time I think about it. The two young men who had been observing us ran in front of the shopping cart and caused us to abruptly stop walking. When they first ordered us into the room to my right my mind couldn’t grasp the words coming out of their mouths. I didn’t fully understand it until Halley started walking, following their hand gestures leading to a small, light grey room containing only a desk and a bench. Our next order was to sit down on the bench in front of us. We stood there, frozen all looking at each other with question marks stamped on our foreheads. The blond guy repeated the words, and I motioned for Halley and Iulia to come sit down next to me. This huge, excruciating lump formed in my gut as I stared into the gray wall in front of me. “We know what you did” kept repeating in my head like a broken record. I don’t even know what I did, I thought, still staring into the wall. The lump in my gut expanded, and turned into a state of panic and surrealness. Is this real? I thought, not being able to express emotion until I heard the helpless whimpers coming from my right. Iulia sat there shaking, tears rushing down her cheeks with her hands covering her mouth, desperately trying to muffle the sobs. That was the moment the first tear hit my chest where there were soon to be many, many more. Suddenly, Ms. Waterman rushed into the room, coming to our defense.
The brunette guy explained to her that we had be caught stealing for the past hour and a half. “Is this true, girls?” she asked, and the look of sadness and disappointment covering her face as we all hesitantly nodded our heads will never leave my memory. After sometime, a police officer came to collect necessary information about each of us. “How tall are you? How old are you? How much do you weigh? Is black your natural hair color?” he asked. Completely zoned out, I nodded to every question he asked. I was told to call my mom, and her first response was “You have got to be kidding me, what is wrong with you?!”. I handed the police officer my phone, and after telling her the situation all he kept repeating was “Ma’am, calm down, it’s alright, ma’am..”. The total sum of our unpaid items was $101. After some time, we were given back the items we had actually paid for, and all we were left with were those stupid hangers. Not much later, we were picked up by Mr. Jones, who told us as soon as we sat in the car that it was not necessary for us to talk until we reached Hebron. I had not yet stopped crying throughout this process, neither had Halley or Iulia. When we sat down with Mr. Jones, telling him our part of the story he bluntly said “If anyone asks, just tell them to fuck off”. The way he chose to help us instead of throwing us under the bus is something I’ll always appreciate. The following days were filled with fake smiles and vague answers to the very curious spectators. This experience will forever make me cringe in complete embarrassment and shame, and it is not something I’m happy to talk about with anyone, not even my fellow “partners in crime”. The incident itself may have been tough, but it wasn’t the toughest part of the event.
Everything that was later caused by it hurt so much more. People may say that mistakes are made to learn from, but doing community service every day after school, is not the way I had wanted to spend my last week at Hebron. I missed out on so many opportunities to spend time with people I may never see again, and words cannot express how much I regret this. I suppose in a way it has helped me grow up, and I hope that someday this will simply be a funny story to tell at dinner parties.

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Maggie Essay

In a society where physical and alcohol abuse is the norm, one is immediately set up for failure from the moment of birth. Only the people with the thickest skin can survive. In the novel, Maggie: Girl of the Streets by Stephen Crane, such a society is displayed in New York’s lower east side during the turn of the twentieth century. Our protagonist, Maggie, along with her younger brother, Jimmie, have experienced a traumatic childhood. Tainted with the viciousness of a drunken mother who is a reflection of the devil, and the painful strikes of an abusive father that stumbled home every night only to collapse on the floor, leaving the children quivering in a corner. Whilst Jimmie grew up to become a troubled youth with a rebellious attitude and apparent hatred towards authority, Maggie -in contrast- blossomed into a beautiful young woman filled with all the innocence of the world. When Jimmie’s older friend, Pete, is introduced Maggie is entranced by his evident elegance and confidence. With his wealth and bravado he seduces her into a new world filled with the tackiness and glamour that makes up a burlesque show.
Although Pete isn’t considered to be a respectable man by others, he is envied and admired by Maggie. She observed him, and took note from his appearance that, “he waved his hands like a man of the world, who dismisses religion and philosophy, and says ‘Fudge’. He had certainly seen everything and with each curl of his lip, he declared that it amounted to nothing” (Crane, 24). This shows how naive and innocent Maggie is; she has only ever seen the world through the dirty streets of a crime infested neighborhood consisting of poverty and death. Pete had an apparent self superiority, and lacked a single modest bone in his body. He especially took advantage of his financial success as, “he became aware that she [Maggie] was listening closely, he grew still more eloquent in his descriptions of various happenings in his career” (Crane, 27). Pete thrives on the way she adores him, and lures her into his trap with his “fancy” lifestyle. Their relationship begins with him chasing after her; he seeked to suck out the flattery spilling from her lips, and drain her eyes of admiration. She is as eager to experience his elegant way of life as he is willing to show her.
As time passes, however, the roles shift and Maggie becomes the person craving the attention Pete used to spoil her with. Now Maggie, “was pale. From her eyes had been plucked all look of self-reliance. She leaned with a dependent air toward her companion. She was timid, as if fearing his anger or displeasure. She seemed to beseech tenderness of him” (Crane, 57). Maggie has lost herself in Pete, and is no longer her own person. She has now become the inferior half of their relationship, which results in Pete’s declining show of affection. As Nell, a woman from Pete’s past is introduced, a noticeable shift in Maggie’s and Pete’s relationship is shown. Nell is described as, “A woman of brilliance and audacity, accompanied by a mere boy came into the place and took seats near them. At once Pete sprang to his feet, his face beaming with glad surprise” (Crane, 65). Pete shows more excitement for Nell than he does with Maggie, and becomes oblivious of her existence as he’s consumed with reminiscing their common past. Nell’s character is the complete opposite of Maggie’s despite the fact that they’ve grown up around the same circumstances. She carries a confident demeanour, and isn’t phased by the looks of other men because they are unworthy of her attention. Her appearance matches her personality, and as Maggie observes her she, “perceived that her black dress fitted her to perfection… she wore no jewelry and was painted with no apparent paint. She looked clear-eyed through the stares of the men” (65). Pete is drawn to her elegance and nonchalance the same way Maggie was attracted to Pete’s. Pete is now the inferior one as he is consumed by Nell’s effortless beauty and independence.
Nell later takes advantage of Pete’s feelings for her as she and her friends join him at a bar for drinks. He seeks her affection as Maggie craved his. As Pete lays passed out from an overconsumption of alcohol, the “woman of brilliance and audacity stayed behind taking up the bills and stuffing them into a deep, irregularly-shaped pocket. A guttural snore from the recumbent man caused her to turn and look down at him. She laughed. ‘What a damn fool,’ she said, and went” (Crane, 86). This shows Nell’s true character and the ways she has learnt to survive in the corrupt society. She has learnt to play the game of survival by keeping away from emotional attachment and enchanting men with her beauty and attention. Maggie has failed to do this and turns to prostitution as a solution. Like many others at the time, Maggie died young and her death was as insignificant as her life. Her weakness killed her while Nell never allowed herself to be weak. Maggie may have been the nicer one of the two; however, Nell was the only one to survive and none of them experienced true happiness. In a society such as theirs there is only two ways to go: either die innocent but weak, or live a superficial life without happiness.

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Morality Essay

Throughout human history, we as people have been faced with moral conflicts and
lack of ethics involving our choices and in society. Often we have blindly followed and obeyed the laws within a community or religion without taking any consideration whether they are morally justified. Our current society has advanced from the one of the Puritanic times; however, it does not necessarily mean that we have morally developed. In the novel The Crucible, by Arthur Miller, the people of the 17th century society live an exceedingly religiously-bound life. They were restricted in many ways which the author mentions by saying, “They had no novelists- and would not have permitted anyone to read a novel if one were handy. Their creed forbade anything resembling a theater or ‘vain enjoyment’. They did not celebrate Christmas, and a holiday from work meant only that they must concentrate even more upon prayer” (Miller, 4). Even during their days of freedom they were forced to follow religious procedures. Their idea of enjoyment was to become completely dedicated to serving God. A thing as simple as dancing was discouraged, and nothing that was opposed to the court or the Bible was permitted. In the novel The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, this behavior and general outlook was described by saying, “There was very much the same solemnity of demeanour on the part of the spectators, as befitted a people among whom religion interfused, that he mildest and severest acts of public discipline were alike made venerable and awful” (Hawthorne, 30).
People of their time had no sympathy for one another, and should a crime or mistake be committed it would be open for the mockery and involvement of the public.
Judgement wasn’t the only punishment a culprit would receive. As witchcraft became a growing issue in Salem, hanging was the most popular penalty. During the frustrating times when every other person was accused of witchcraft, one of the judges from the Crucible stated, “I should hang ten thousand that dared to rise against the law, and an ocean of salt tears could not melt the resolution of the statues” (Miller, 129). The law was immensely important to many people in the Puritanic society, and there were no exceptions and no acts of leniency or mercy. People were forced to go against their better judgement and moral values in order to survive this crisis. Reverend Hale, also a character of the Crucible, claims that he is doing the “devil’s work” by counseling Christians to lie for the sake of their own freedom (Miller, 131). The only question was whether a person was able to live with this lie on their conscience, or die for the pride.
An article concerning the conscience of people refers to the main character from Sophocles’ play, Antigone, who was faced with two choices: either obey the command of the King to leave her brother unburied, or to do as her moral conscience tells her, which is to rebel against the orders of the authority. Antigone did what she considered righteous, even though it went against the laws of the society (Dombrowski, 2016). This shows that laws set in a community or religion aren’t necessarily ethically correct. Is it wrong for a person to steal even if it’s to feed their starving family? Is it wrong to lie even if it’s to protect the feelings of a loved one? These are all considered sins within many religions, but may be what is morally right in those specific situations.
During times of war countries involved send troops to fight, but is it ethical to kill people who are simply obeying the orders of an authority in the same way as yourself? In an article called “The Morality of War”, the issue of morals and ethics are debated. The subject was about World War II and the differences between the powers used during and after the war. It is stated that, “It was not soft power that freed Europe [in the 1940’s]. It was hard power. And what followed immediately after hard power? Did the United States ask for dominion over a single nation in Europe? No. Soft power came in with the Marshall Plan. Soft power came with American GI’s who put their weapons down once the war was over and helped those nations rebuild” (Weigel, 2003). The use of ‘hard power’ may have been what saved Europe during the war; however, it does not justify the extreme use of force and the number of deaths and devastation that followed in each country during post war times. Converting to ‘soft power’ after the war was over was their way of redeeming themselves for the damage caused by the brutality of the military. This shows that the choices made in more recent times aren’t better than the ones made a long time ago.
What has changed in our current society are the religious boundaries and conservative views from the majority of our population; however, we do continue to judge people in our surroundings. Whether or not we are standing on a scaffold or appear in a newspaper, we are still exposed to the public eye and are still mocked and judged today just as much, if not more, as during the Puritanic times. We condemn each other for sins we may as well have committed ourselves. Making an immoral decision is as simple as ignoring the ongoing issue of poverty and hunger despite of our awareness (Foy, 2010). We are no better today than we were four hundred years ago, we have merely changed the targets of our judgement and immoral behavior.

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Unsettling Dreams

When Dolphine woke up one morning from unsettling dreams, she found she changed in her bed into a monstrous parrot. She lay on her back with her claws tangled into the covers. As she tried turn to her side, her colorful, large feathers knocked over the glass of water standing on the bedside table. The mess created on the floor irritated her, and shifted her focus to cleaning it up. The realization of the change in her physical appearance had not yet struck her until she tried to grab her covers with her pointy, sharp beak. Her anxious head looked around, turning from side to side in complete confusion. Still in denial, she closed her eyes and tried to force herself to sleep. After a while of trying to come up with a reasonable explanation, Dolphine with all her strength pushed herself out of the bed only to land on the soaked carpet on the floor. “Great,” she thought as she lay there in the cold wetness of the water. She rolled onto her back so that she was facing the ceiling. Looking up on the brightly shining lamp, she realized that her mom must have been in there relativity recent to turn it on.
-Mom? she shouted in hopes of a response.
-Yes, honey what is it? Now she was unsure of what to do. Did she want her mom to find her in this state, or figure out her own solution of what to do.
-Uh nothing, never mind! she said quickly as she flapped her giant wings in an effort of getting herself up. Finally, with the help of her beak and claws she was up and standing, but maintaining her balance was almost harder than getting up. “This isn’t real,” she thought, “it can’t be.” Suddenly there’s a knock on the door.
-Open up! yells her younger brother.
-Justin, what do you want? she replies, clearly irritated by his disturbance.
-I need to get my stuff that’s in your room. I need them now hurry! At this point she was almost too annoyed to reply. She soon realized that he wouldn’t go away without his toys, and she had to make up a plan of how to give them to him.
-In a minute! she said with panic in her voice. She tried taking steps, but they were unstable and wobbly. Her long claws were becoming an obstacle to her walking, but the room was too small for her to try to fly in. After a while her brother was growing impatient, and had gathered her mom to check on what was happening.
-Dolphine, how is it going, are you alright? she asked with her voice filled with worry.
-Dolphine, how is it going, are you alright? she repeated involuntarily. It was if she said it without control. This only filled her mom with further worry, and caused her to try and open the door.
-Honey, just unlock the door so I can come in and check on you, her mom said, please?
-Please, Dolphine said in a squawking voice, and with a little hesitation her mom left.
Dolphine sighed with relief, and continued to explore her new appearance. She took a few steps around, and as she goes to turn around the door flew open and her mom was standing there with her eyes fixed on the green feathers which cover the wings. The image had caused her brother to scream, while the mom just stood there motionless. None of them made a sound. For a solid three minutes it was completely quiet, with only the sobs of her younger brother.Dolphine tried to utter a few words, but the only sound to come out was a squawk. Her mom covered her mouth with her hand, and immediately took her brother to the living room. Now Dolphine was alone again, trapped between the four walls of her room. All she could do was to stand there, waiting for someone to wake her up from what she thought was a dream.

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