Dylan Poon

"Whoever is trying to bring you down is already below you"


Emil Paragraph

In Emil by Stuart McLean, Morley learns that fate is never set in stone and norms change no matter the size, so one should show kindness to forge bonds. She learns this near the end of the story, when Emil wins the lottery and gives her some of the money as a thanks to her. Even though Dave, Morley’s wife saw a homeless, hopeless beggar, Morley saw a person with their own goals and personality, despite Emil’s strange behavior. By treating Emil nicely, she not only earned some monetary value, but also a new bond through kindness, but not foolishness. With the context we are given, Morley does not show foolishness or weakness, since Emil seemed to be genuine to Morley, and showed it even before he gave her the money, when Emil said “I can’t take your sandwich” (pg.112) and “that’s too much [money].” (pg.111) Due to the theme that “norms change over time”, Morley learns that by showing respect to those she can trust, she will be reciprocated with rewards of physical and non-physical forms.


Star Wars

After watching the film Star Wars: A New Hope, I find that using a social lens to view the movie is most beneficial. Since the entire film is about a large social conflict between an upper class and a lower class, the social lens firstly allows us to understand the film more, and secondly look farther into the time it was written, explaining why it was written the way it was. Starting with the opening bit of the movie, we already see that there is a distinguished power, the empire, that can rule over the entire galaxy, despite having many smaller leaders like Princess Leia. However, they have ultimate power over everything, shown by when they take the princess in as a prisoner, interrogating her, and then blowing up her home planet. We also see that there are military troops scattered almost everywhere. They also have the power over others, and look to be constantly on edge, ready to attack. We see this when Luke and Obi-Wan are heading to the cantina, and are stopped by the storm troopers, who had their guns ready, even for a simple ID check. Not only do we see a clear upper class, but we also see a low class, which involves the rebels and most of the droids. The conflict between them is like an imbalance of power that causes the lower class to revolt. A similar situation is seen with the American Revolution, where a higher power is treating its subjects unfairly. However, in the case of Star Wars, the problem is too much military control, rather than taxes. I also noticed that the motives of both sides are much clearer after watching the film through the social lens and seems to blur the lines between ‘good’ and ‘bad’. We can see that all the empire primarily wants is not to destroy the rebels, but to keep peace through military control, though unfair. The rebel’s wants are to have less military control everywhere, so they made the goal of eradicating the empire’s superweapon to send their idea to the empire. However, since there is a clash of ideas, we can also connect this to the English Civil War, where a difference in ideas/religion caused a conflict that resulted in war. So, this movie is suggesting that during the time that the movie was written, there was a conflict between two sides with different ideas, causing conflict. In the time that this film was created, we can draw that this film was made, to present an argument against communism. The conflict is presented through the clash of ideas between the rebels and the empire, also representing capitalism against communism.