SOLUTION: UCSD Breaking Down Monster Culture Seven Theses Book Report

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Crib Sheet for “Monster Culture”
Thesis 1: The Monster’s Body is a Cultural Body
o monsters correspond with a culture at a particular moment
fear, desire, and anxiety all revealed
o monsters are always symbols and representations of a culture.
o they are brought into being because of certain places or feelings of a time period.
o monsters are “an embodiment of a certain cultural moment.”
Thesis 2: The Monster Always Escapes
o
monster is never truly destroyed/defeated; something is always left over
monsters = fear; fear cannot be physically conquered/literally killed
o monsters always get away.
o they can never be caught or if they can, they will return. It may change form or
dress, but it will come back.
o when a monster is “killed”, there is always some remnant, some talisman, of it left
behind.
o if there is no physical element left behind, there is at least a small glimpse of the
monster or footprints, something that makes people uncertain of its death and
ultimate destruction.
Thesis 3: The Monster is the Harbinger of Category Crisis
o the monster threatens conformity
the monster is in 2 categories at once (or… none?)
o monsters cannot be assigned to a specific classification of animals or people.
o their physical, psychological, or social characteristics cross the lines of
classification.
o monsters can be half human, half animal, not fitting them into either category, or
they may have some sort of other deformity or social characteristic that prevents
them from being defined as a specific species.
Thesis 4: The Monster Dwells at the Gates of Difference
o the monster is an “outsider”
o we create monster to “other” people that are different from us
outsiders not the same; depends on culture/society/era (race, religion, ethnicity,
sexuality, etc)
o monsters are comprised of the things that are perceived as different.
o they are different culturally, sexually, racially, economically, or politically. They
have aspects outside “the norm” of general thought.
o when the majority of people believes one idea or holds something to be true, the
monster always believes the opposite.
Thesis 5: The Monster Polices the Borders of the Possible
o monsters make sure we don’t cross the line; they keep us back from breaking the
rules
“curiosity killed the cat”
o monsters exhibit our hidden desires.
o we create monsters so that we can explore what would otherwise be taboo.
o they embody strange ideas about gender roles, sex, aggression, location, or
domination.
o they can freely destruct and harm, and not feel repercussions or guilt from
authority.
o monsters enable us to play the role of things we would normally not claim as our
identity, like small children dressing up in costumes of demons and witches for
Halloween.
Thesis 6: Fear of the Monster is Really a Kind of Desire
o monsters represents both fear and attraction (stands in both categories)
monsters are a power fantasy… they do what we want to, but can’t
o we get a sort of desire out of being scared (by monsters)
o monsters are warnings of the unknown.
o they embody the ideas that scare us so that we won’t look deeper into them.
o when the ocean was being explored, serpents were created to live at the ends of
the earth, so that people would be warned and not want to explore further what
may be beyond their understanding of the ocean.
o monsters keep us away from the unknown.
Thesis 7: The Monster Stands at the Threshold… of Becoming
o monster makes us re-evaluate culture assumptions; brings out flaws in society
o monsters exhibit our hidden desires.
o monsters invoke us to examine our culture and the assumptions we make about
other peoples and ask us to ponder why we create them.
o they invite people to explore their minds and find our true beliefs.
155 Words to Describe an Author’s Tone
What is tone?
Tone refers to an author’s use of words and writing style to convey his or her attitude towards a
topic. Tone is often defined as what the author feels about the subject. What the reader feels is
known as the mood.
Tip: Don’t confuse tone with voice. Voice can be explained as the author’s personality
expressed in writing. Tone = Attitude. Voice = Personality.
Tone (attitude) and voice (personality) create a writing style. You may not be able to alter your
personality but you can adjust your attitude. This gives you ways to create writing that affects
your audience’s mood.
The mechanics
Tone is conveyed through diction (choice and use of words and phrases), viewpoint, syntax
(grammar; how you put words and phrases together), and level of formality. It is the way you
express yourself in speech or writing.
How do you find the correct tone?
You can usually find a tone by asking these three questions:
1. Why am I writing this?
2. Who is my intended audience?
3. What do I want the reader to learn, understand, or think about?
In formal writing, your tone should be clear, concise, confident, and courteous. The writing
level should be sophisticated, but not pretentious.
In creative writing, your tone is more subjective, but you should always aim to communicate
clearly. Genre sometimes determines the tone.
Tone
Absurd
Accusatory
Acerbic
Admiring
Aggressive
Aggrieved
Ambivalent
Amused
Angry
Animated
Apathetic
Apologetic
Appreciative
Ardent
Arrogant
Assertive
Awestruck
Belligerent
Meaning
illogical; ridiculous; silly; implausible; foolish
suggesting someone has done something wrong, complaining
sharp; forthright; biting; hurtful; abrasive; severe
approving; think highly of; respectful; praising
hostile; determined; forceful; argumentative
indignant; annoyed; offended; disgruntled
having mixed feelings; uncertain; in a dilemma; undecided
entertained; diverted; pleased
incensed or enraged; threatening or menacing
full of life or excitement; lively; spirited; impassioned; vibrant
showing little interest; lacking concern; indifferent; unemotional
full of regret; repentant; remorseful; acknowledging failure
grateful; thankful; showing pleasure; enthusiastic
enthusiastic; passionate
pompous; disdainful; overbearing; condescending; vain; scoffing
self-confident; strong-willed; authoritative; insistent
amazed, filled with wonder/awe; reverential
hostile; aggressive; combatant
Benevolent
Bitter
Callous
Candid
Caustic
Cautionary
Celebratory
Chatty
Colloquial
Comic
Compassionate
Complex
Compliant
Concerned
Conciliatory
Condescending
Confused
Contemptuous
Critical
Cruel
Curious
Cynical
Defensive
Defiant
Demeaning
Depressing
Derisive
Detached
Dignified
Diplomatic
Disapproving
Disheartening
Disparaging
Direct
Disappointed
Dispassionate
Distressing
Docile
Earnest
Egotistical
sympathetic; tolerant; generous; caring; well meaning
angry; acrimonious; antagonistic; spiteful; nasty
cruel disregard; unfeeling; uncaring; indifferent; ruthless
truthful, straightforward; honest; unreserved
making biting, corrosive comments; critical
gives warning; raises awareness; reminding
praising; pay tribute to; glorify; honour
informal; lively; conversational; familiar
familiar; everyday language; informal; colloquial; casual
humorous; witty; entertaining; diverting
sympathetic; empathetic; warm-hearted; tolerant; kind
having many varying characteristics; complicated
agree or obey rules; acquiescent; flexible; submissive
worried; anxious; apprehensive
intended to placate or pacify; appeasing
stooping to the level of one’s inferiors; patronising
unable to think clearly; bewildered; vague
showing contempt; scornful; insolent; mocking
finding fault; disapproving; scathing; criticizing
causing pain and suffering; unkind; spiteful; severe
wanting to find out more; inquisitive; questioning
scornful of motives/virtues of others; mocking; sneering
defending a position; shielding; guarding; watchful
obstinate; argumentative; defiant; contentious
disrespectful; undignified
sad, melancholic; discouraging; pessimistic
snide; sarcastic; mocking; dismissive; scornful
aloof; objective; unfeeling; distant
serious; respectful; formal; proper
tactful; subtle; sensitive; thoughtful
displeased; critical; condemnatory
discouraging; demoralizing; undermining; depressing
dismissive; critical; scornful
straightforward; honest
discouraged; unhappy because something has gone wrong
impartial; indifferent; unsentimental; cold; unsympathetic
heart-breaking; sad; troubling
compliant; submissive; deferential; accommodating
showing deep sincerity or feeling; serious
self-absorbed; selfish; conceited; boastful
Empathetic
Encouraging
Enthusiastic
Evasive
Excited
Facetious
Farcical
Flippant
Forceful
Formal
Frank
Frustrated
Gentle
Ghoulish
Grim
Gullible
Hard
Humble
Humorous
Hypercritical
Impartial
Impassioned
Imploring
Impressionable
Inane
Incensed
Incredulous
Indignant
Informative
Inspirational
Intense
Intimate
Ironic
Irreverent
Jaded
Joyful
Judgmental
Laudatory
Light-Hearted
Loving
understanding; kind; sensitive
optimistic; supportive
excited; energetic
ambiguous; cryptic; unclear
emotionally aroused; stirred
inappropriate; flippant
ludicrous; absurd; mocking; humorous and highly improbable
superficial; glib; shallow; thoughtless; frivolous
powerful; energetic; confident; assertive
respectful; stilted; factual; following accepted styles/rules
honest; direct; plain; matter-of-fact
annoyed; discouraged
kind; considerate; mild; soft
delighting in the revolting or the loathsome
serious; gloomy; depressing; lacking humour; macabre
naïve; innocent; ignorant
unfeeling; hard-hearted; unyielding
deferential; modest
amusing; entertaining; playful
unreasonably critical; hair splitting; nitpicking
unbiased; neutral; objective
filled with emotion; ardent
pleading; begging
trusting; child-like
silly; foolish; stupid; nonsensical
enraged
disbelieving; unconvinced; questioning; suspicious
annoyed; angry; dissatisfied
instructive; factual; educational
encouraging; reassuring
earnest; passionate; concentrated; deeply felt
familiar; informal; confidential; confessional
the opposite of what is meant
lacking respect for things that are generally taken seriously
bored; having had too much of the same thing; lack enthusiasm
positive; optimistic; cheerful; elated
critical; finding fault; disparaging
praising; recommending
carefree; relaxed; chatty; humorous
affectionate; showing intense, deep concern
gruesome; horrifying; frightening
Macabre
desiring to harm others or to see others suffer; ill-willed; spiteful
Malicious
Mean-Spirited inconsiderate; unsympathetic
scornful; ridiculing; making fun of someone
Mocking
grieving; lamenting; woeful
Mourning
innocent; unsophisticated; immature
Naïve
self-admiring; selfish; boastful; self-pitying
Narcissistic
unpleasant; unkind; disagreeable; abusive
Nasty
unhappy, pessimistic
Negative
thinking about the past; wishing for something from the past
Nostalgic
without prejudice; without discrimination; fair; based on fact
Objective
overly obedient and/or submissive; fawning; grovelling
Obsequious
hopeful; cheerful
Optimistic
angered and resentful; furious; extremely angered
Outraged
frank; candid; spoken without reserve
Outspoken
expressing pity, sympathy, tenderness
Pathetic
condescending; scornful; pompous
Patronizing
reflective; introspective; philosophical; contemplative
Pensive
convincing; eloquent; influential; plausible
Persuasive
seeing the negative side of things
Pessimistic
Philosophical theoretical; analytical; rational; logical
full of fun and good spirits; humorous; jesting
Playful
realistic; sensible
Pragmatic
affected; artificial; grandiose; rhetorical; flashy
Pretentious
apologetic; remorseful
Regretful
aggrieved; offended; displeased; bitter
Resentful
accepting; unhappy
Resigned
controlled; quiet; unemotional
Restrained
showing deep respect and esteem
Reverent
morally right and just; guiltless; pious; god-fearing
Righteous
making fun to show a weakness; ridiculing; derisive
Satirical
scornful; mocking; ridiculing
Sarcastic
critical; stinging; unsparing; harsh
Scathing
expressing contempt or derision; scathing; dismissive
Scornful
Sensationalistic provocative; inaccurate; distasteful
thinking about feelings, especially when remembering the past
Sentimental
honest; truthful; earnest
Sincere
disbelieving; unconvinced; doubting
Skeptical
not funny; in earnest; serious
Solemn
prejudiced; biased
Subjective
Submissive
Sulking
Sympathetic
Thoughtful
Tolerant
Tragic
Unassuming
Uneasy
Urgent
Vindictive
Virtuous
Whimsical
Witty
Wonder
World-Weary
Worried
Wretched
compliant; passive; accommodating; obedient
bad-tempered; grumpy; resentful; sullen
compassionate; understanding of how someone feels
reflective; serious; absorbed
open-minded; charitable; patient; sympathetic; lenient
disastrous; calamitous
modest; self-effacing; restrained
worried; uncomfortable; edgy; nervous
insistent; saying something must be done soon
vengeful; spiteful; bitter; unforgiving
lawful; righteous; moral; upstanding
quaint; playful; mischievous; offbeat
clever; quick-witted; entertaining
awe-struck; admiring; fascinating
bored; cynical; tired
anxious; stressed; fearful
miserable; despairing; sorrowful; distressed
Helpful Tip: Finding the correct tone is a matter of practice. Try and write for different
audiences. Even if you only want to write novels, it is an apprenticeship of sorts. Write press
releases. Write opinion pieces. Write interviews. Write copy. Write a business plan. The more
you write, the better you will become at pitching your work with the nuances needed to create
the perfect book.
Breaking down “Monster Culture (Seven Theses)”
Overall argument:
Audience:
Purpose:
Tone:
Thesis 1:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 2:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 3:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 4:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 5:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 6:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 7:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Breaking down “Monster Culture (Seven Theses)”
Overall argument:
Audience:
Purpose:
Tone:
Thesis 1:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 2:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 3:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 4:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 5:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 6:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:
Thesis 7:
Main Claim:
Evidence (2 important examples):
Strategies:

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