User:TSmith2020/HUMN 4472 Journal

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August 14, 2019: Science Fiction

Science fiction is what it sounds like to me. It is happenings that occur versus the theories in science that have been proven. Fiction in literature means not real. When I think about science fiction I think of supernatural powers. For example, shooting spider web silk from your hand. It is impossible because humans and spiders have two different genetic makeups. Another example could be someone having psychic visions. No one can see into the future and know what will happen next or have something happen and try to prevent it. How about people creating weather like storms and tornadoes? I don't think that we as humans can make weather patterns but how we treat our planet and litter can affect the weather. My last example since we are coming up two months from Halloween would be witches on brooms flying in the air. All of these things are impossible because of the science we have today. Until science evolves we are stuck where we are.

August 30, 2019: What I Learned

The three aspects I learned about are speculation of future, impact on science and technology, and in a different time or space. After watching The Truth About Science Fiction [2] I learned that science fiction helps scientists embark on new journeys and seek the unknown. Science fiction helps take things out of perspective and put in what-if scenarios. Science Fiction shows us different perspectives. Two definitions I read that stood out to me from this week's readings. One was from Isaac Asimov his definition of science fiction is that branch of literature which is concerned with the impact of scientific advance upon human beings.” The other was stated by, Robert Heinlein, his definition of science fiction is a handy short definition of almost all science fiction might read: realistic speculation about possible future events, based solidly on adequate knowledge of the real world, past and present, and on a thorough understanding of the scientific method. To make the definition cover all science fiction (instead of ‘almost all’) it is necessary only to strike out the word ‘future.” 

@TSmith2020:: Science fiction definitely shows us different perspectives, I agree. For example, the trope of "aliens" can mean so many different things thematically in a story. With that, we're able to explore and understand what it means to be an alien, not just the kind with the big eyes and spaceships, but also the perspectives of those that are foreign or different. -MorganAtMGA (talk) 19:53, 8 September 2019 (EDT)

September 7, 2019: "The Swimmer" With Allusions

In John Cheever’s book/film “The Swimmer” the aspect of different allusions and symbolism is a science fiction element I picked up on as I read up on it because of funding reasons. I had a chance to read “The Swimmer” through a google book. The plot starts with a guy swimming home from a social function using his neighbor's pools. As the plot of the story thickens the setting of the scene changes. The weather changes from being sunny to gloomy. Not only did the weather change but the attitudes of the people he was surrounded by were getting worse. The final thing that went through a change in this production was the pool’s water level. Metaphorically the guy is experiencing change which helps a person grow. The different dimensions give the man different obstacles that he has to hurdle over to get home. Different dimensions is another element of science fiction as it deals with different perceptions and altered worlds. The production changing the scenery and vibe of the people helps a person see their alter ego. He named the journey he took through the pools as a river after his wife. [1] As seen throughout the film the guy loses everything he has as and is no longer young as the weather represents the seasons changing. The seasons changing not only tell us the time of year but also how things didn't happen all in one night but all over time.

@TSmith2020: I agree with your statement that “things didn’t happen all in one night” because if you separate this story from its aspect of time, you get a man that neglects the problems of the present. This accumulates to impacting his future life and persona in a way in which he never wanted, but avoided fixing. As a result, he can never return to his past self or the image it held since it is too far gone. Atallent (talk) 10:31, 9 September 2019 (EDT)

@TSmith2020: I agree with you all. Things did not happen all in one night. It's imperative that we keep that in mind. Great point! —AmaniSensei (talk)

September 7, 2019: Theme comparison between "The Swimmer and "La Jetée"

I have seen “La Jetée” directed by Chris Marker and read “The Swimmer” by John Cheever they both have time travel and symbolism in common. Both of the main characters that are the protagonist live in their past lives. Neddy the main character in "The Swimmer" goes through life in disbelief. As the story plot progresses he loses everything of value to him. Throughout the plot, the season and his age changed to reflect the time travel. the main character in La Jetée is a male prisoner of World War 3 who is being experimented on for time travel. He travels through time to find this woman that he once saw in his past to start a romantic relationship with her. He soon realizes that the death of a man he saw in the past was his own death. The works in this post both tie together through the symbolism of death by Neddy’s family breaking apart and the guy who time-traveled just to understand the man he saw dead was himself.

@TSmith2020:: I also talked about how time travel was a common theme in both the stories. I think both protagonist were trying to escape the horrible present realities they were faced with.--Daisja30 (talk) 18:20, 8 September 2019 (EDT)
@TSmith2020: Similar to your journal, I talked about how both The Swimmer and La Jette had themes of time and change. Both had some memories in the past that they were more fond of, so they each had their own ways of going back to those time. Brebre143 (talk) 19:26, 8 September 2019 (EDT)
@TSmith2020: Please see the directions about referencing. some good thoughts here, but they must be accurately supported. —Grlucas (talk) 07:29, 10 September 2019 (EDT)

September 15,2019: Doctor Who "Blink" Analysis

Doctor Who" is a well-known television show during the 1990s and had twenty-six seasons. In the episode "Blink" which was directed by Hettie MacDonald happened in the third season of the show. The show uses some common symbols but has a twist in their meanings. What you perceive the meanings were originally are the opposite in this episode. The angels are one symbol that is a common symbol of faith, devotion, hope, trust, and love. Angels are usually seen with calm peaceful faces and white wings or wardrobe to represent purity. In this episode, they are seen weeping to show a change in the mood of the symbol. These angels are not sent to the actors to bring peace or clarity but rather sadness and confusion. In the video clip of [3] The angels are seen as the antagonist to assassinate the characters.

With a hidden theme of power, and life the producer uses this as the angels' form of life. David Tennant states as Doctor Who in the episode, "They just zap you into the past and let you live to death. You die in the past and in the present, they consume the energy of all the days you might have had." With that statement, you see life and death in an instance. Taking one from their current present-day life and plunging them into a time period they know nothing about and forcing them to live in the past until they die. Somehow also making it possible for these alien creature to consume the life which the individual would have left in the present day. This episode alone gives its audience the idea that life is worth living whether it be in the past or in the now present. This is interesting because of the whole idea of time traveling. I have always seen people move forward in time and not backward.

@TSmith2020:: I found your journal to be very interesting. I also analyzed the angels in my journal but I took a different approach on the matter. However, I liked reading how they represented opposite of what they typically symbolize.--Daisja30 (talk) 23:20, 15 September 2019 (EDT)

September 15,2019: Comparison Between "The Gernsback Continuum" and "Blink"

Comparing William Gibson’s “The Gernsback Continuum” and Doctor Who’s “Blink” episode can be a bit of a challenge if you aren't a big science fiction fan or it can be hard to find something that the two have in common other than the fact that the protagonist of both works watched and viewed this week were photographers. It is clear to me that the main aspect the two works from this week have in common are their themes. Both stories theme is about a future that has not happened yet.

In Gibson’s “The Gernsback Continuum,” the protagonist dreams of an alternate reality based on the 1900's image of how the future world is supposed to look like. He is able to do this through “semiotic ghost” which are characterized as “bits of deep cultural imagery that have split off and taken on a life of its own”. In the "Blink" episode of "Doctor Who", protagonist Sally Sparrow has to fix a future that has not happened yet. The antagonists of this story also known as “the weeping angels” are unearthly creatures that send humans to the past to create paradoxes the 1930s pictured a future world with “white marble, slipstreamed chrome, immortal crystal, and burnish bronze” and this is the very future the protagonist had to awaken in. Then Sally is given multiple clues from the past and future from a set of DVDs to connect her to the right people to help her manifest a future where she gets to live, the Doctor gets his time machine back, and a number of the angels die. Hill stated, "the Weeping angels resemble conventional horror monsters, monsters that have no role other than being monsters". The protagonist in The Gernsback Continuum couldn’t understand how the future of the 1930s had become his reality. As he captured more and more of the current remains of architectural attempts at the thirties envisioned future, he started to see zeppelin docks and weird flying objects. Then he even comes in contact with the people of that time period with their food pill belts and aluminum avocado shaped car. Ultimately this future never came true because during the process of trying to make it a reality it nearly destroys the very earth through things like pollution and the carbon footprint. Nevertheless, a future that was able to be successfully changed was that in Doctor Who’s episode called “Blink.”

@TSmith2020: Some thoughtful commentary. Be sure to proofread, and we need to work on your referencing. —Grlucas (talk) 13:06, 16 September 2019 (EDT)


  1. <> The Truth About Science Fiction /> [4] retrieved 28 August 2019.
  2. <Cheever, John, and Eleanor Perry. The swimmer. HarperCollins, 2009./> [5] retreived 7 September 2019
  3. <Morgan, Robert. "The Swimmer: Burt Lancaster Journeys Upriver Into the Dark Heart of Suburbia." James River Film Journal. James River FilmJournal, 26 Mar. 2014. Web. 7 Dec. 2015. <[6]./> retreived 7 September 2019.
  4. <Rudy, Lisa Jo, M.Div. “The Swimmer (Film).” Salem Press Encyclopedia, 2019. EBSCOhost, [ direct=true&db=ers&AN=89403180&site=eds-live&scope=site] retreived 7 September 2019.
  5. <Analysis of The Swimmer[7]/> retreived 7 September 2019.
  6. <Matthew Croombs. La Jetée in Historical Time: Torture, Visuality, Displacement. no. 2, 2017, p. 25-45. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1353/cj.2017.0001. retreived 7 September 2019.
  7. <Marker, Chris, et al. La Jetée. Criterion Collection, 2007. EBSCOhost, <> retreived 7 September 2019.
  8. <[8]retrieved 15 Septenber 2019.
  9. Hills, Matt. New Dimensions of Doctor Who : Adventures in Space, Time and Television. I.B. Tauris, 2013. EBSCOhost, retreived 15 September 2019.