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Ceremony is a novel meant to change us. It is a story, which instructs and enlightens, but it is also a tool for relating. It is useful in an extremely practical sense: It teaches us about being connected to our world, about difference and the other. These are only a couple of the possible tangible effects the book has on readers, and truly, the limiting factor in the number of possible uses for Ceremony is simply the number of individuals who read it.
One of the individuals who has read Ceremony and outlined the impact the novel had on her is Alanna Kathleen Brown, a professor from the English department at Montana State University, whose essay is entitled "Pulling Silko's Threads Through Time: An Exploration of Storytelling.
She has brought Native American storytelling, and with it many different tribal attitudes, into her own life, and attributes much of this to Silko's style of storytelling. Silko creates a ceremony-written-down that a reader can engage with on an active level.
Between Silko's story, and style of storytelling, and Brown's reading, there is room for another literary theory that can shed light on why so many non-Indians can relate to Native American Literature, and this theory seems custom built for Ceremony.
It is the idea of the Hermeneutic Circle, an ancient idea in European literary thinking, but a useful one that relates literature in many of the same ways Silko and her peers do. Hans-Georg Gadamer, a major player in hermeneutic circles, describes the basic goal of literature: What Silko provides us with is a book that builds bridges so that, as readers embarking on our own personal "ceremony" of striving to understand, we can each make connections between the novel and our lives, and likewise, Silko connects the Native American tradition of storytelling to a Western tradition.
The concept of hermeneutics was developed by Friedrich Schleiermacher in It was put forth as a theory of understanding, interpreting. MH Abrams describes the goal of hermeneutics like so: Therefore, much of the emphasis is put on the reader's involvement.
Schleiermacher culminated his ideas about hermeneutics in a procedure that he outlined for a reader's understanding of a text. His process was simple: This seems basic, especially if the fractured linearity of Ceremony or any number of Native American novels is readily accepted by the reader, but oftentimes this is not the case and it is useful to let a reader know that they cannot expect to understand portions of text individually, that it is necessary to see the whole to get the whole picture.
This name is quite the misnomer, since, as I will detail in the bulk of this paper, the reader is not simply thrust back into the same place they started from. Indeed, they may barely recognize home when they return to it, depending on the effectuality of the text.
Martin Heidegger developed some more particulars of hermeneutics and the Hermeneutic Circle, and his student, Gadamer, evolved the idea into its current form, and it is mostly to his ideas which I will relate Silko's novel.
The initial concern for the Hermeneutic Circle is the fusion of horizons. The reader brings his cultural-social-historical background to the text, and this constitutes her horizon.
The text also brings its same background, which may or may not be the author's horizon, to the reader, and the Hermeneutic Circle works to combine these disparate horizons together. This coming together may constitute, among other potential mergings, a merging of ideas, people, cultures or theologies.
This is possible because the text itself provides a journey for the reader. The Hermeneutic Circle is the description of that journey.
A reader comes to the text with certain prejudices. It is important to note that "prejudice" in this theory does not have a negative connotation; it simply denotes all the things that a reader knows, or thinks she knows, before actually reading a piece. At the outset, a reader's perception of a novel is entirely based on prejudices, and a successful reader will allow those prejudices to slip away as they are overturned by the text.Ceremony is a novel about wholeness and what happens to a person, a community, and a universe when any one part or person is not integrated into that whole.
Separation, alienation, and disease. A Native American Church Birthday Ceremony: Critical Analysis of Spiritual Coincidences Make a wish on an eyelash.
If you find a penny, pick it up for good luck. Published: Mon, 5 Dec Young Goodman Brown by Nathaniel Hawthorne recounts the riveting dream of a young man from Salem.
In the dream, Goodman Brown comes to a defining moment with evil and is enforced to observe the nature of evil in the world. Critical Analysis of Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets of the serves by J.K.
Rowling books Critical Analysis of Harry Potter Fiction Books Series. These human instincts make him a realistic figure. When the sorting ceremony (the ceremony of electing students for four different houses. Ceremony, Leslie Marmon Silko Most readings and articles will be posted on Blackboard—you are responsible for bringing them to class.
Required Materials: 2 blue books for Midterm and Final Exam To engage in critical analysis and reading of literature. • Depth and critical perspective in essays, exams, projects, and other assignments; and • Demonstration of knowledge and understanding of the selected texts and concepts over the course of the term, including in essays, exams, projects, and presentations.