Category Archives: Class Notes

Class notes 10/3/2017

HW for Thu 10/5: Station Eleven Part 1 + blog post (wed 10/4)

Group Discussion “There Will be Soft Rain”

Question 6 from sheet:

  • House is altar is metaphor,
  • the way the quote is sounded in religiousness way,
  • the ritual of the religion continued senseless endlessly it refer how the machine doing chores is like ritual that the machine of the house continue doing endlessly because program to do it, and the endlessly is referred as it continue but the owner already died

To describe “August 2026: There Will be Soft Rain(1950)”  in one sentence: A highly advance technological house taking care of the house chores  while not knowing the family or owner is long decreased.

Information about “August 2026: There Will be Soft Rain(1950)” 


  1. house(domestic)
  2. destroyed city(radio active glow, in rubbers)


  1. House’s task
  2. fire/tree destroying the house


  1. Natural v.s. Technology


  1. Dog
  2. Dead people
  3. House(robot)

Figure languages 

  1. Foreshadowing

Word Describe the House in the Story: Hollow, Lonely, Abandon, Empty Shell, Hurry, Death, Aliened.

“August 2026: There Will be Soft Rain(1950)” In-dept look 

  • Personification of the Clock in the story  Clock dictating the house to give orders for certain task. “if it were afraid that nobody would” and “repeating it sounds into the emptiness”(First Paragraph)
  • The amount of food represent how many people was living in the house.(Second Paragraph)
  •  Date “August 4, 2026, Location: Allendale, California (Third Paragraph)
  • The Five Spots were the people before they disintegrate from a bomb explosion

Idea and thoughts that were bought up in discussion 

  • Automation: Technology replacing people
  • Media: adaption, technological determination, science fiction, apocalypse
  • Early 20th century events: World War 1, World War 2, Cold War
  • Smart House, Internet of things
  • Connection maybe technology take us over or over reliance of technology
  • When did you ask yourself the question “Where are the people?” in  “August 2026: There Will be Soft Rain(1950)” ?
  • Nuclear shadow
  • indirectly nuclear blast in “August 2026: There Will be Soft Rain(1950)”

Video: title:(High Quality) Famous “Daisy” Attack Ad From 1964 Presidential Election


class notes 9/28/2017



Terms used to describe the child in the basement:

“feeble-minded”(4)     “defective”(4)    fearful   “it”(showing that it is sub-human)(4)  “imbecile”(4)  “miserable”

“hunched”  neglected  “lost track of time”(4)  “looks about 6 but is actually 10″(4)


The terms show that the child was stunted physically, mentally,  and emotionally

the child was not always treated like this and pleads “I will be good”(5)

the people do not respond to the pleas and don’t say good words to the child

society knows about the child and show the child to other children when they are the same age

after seeing the child the people of omelas feel disgusted, feel contempt, feel that they can not do anything , for the younger citizens they may feel that the child could be them, all ending with the majority of them becoming complicit after mulling over the problem.

child is seen as the darkness of the city as it can not have light without darkness

they do not let the child out as it would “destroy omelas”- massive utilitarian bargain –  possibly out of the guilt the citizens will feel for putting it in it’s situation

where do those that walk away walk to?

-commit suicide (the great unknown)

-intentionally into  the unknown to get away from the great injustice


Vapid- shallow

speculative- What If?

extrapolation- what if?/ taking something to it’s logical conclusion


There Will Come Soft Rains Group Notes will be collected Tuesday 10/3

9/26 Class Notes


  • For future reference, notes should be categorized  as Class Notes AND under whatever stories we discuss that day Ex: Today’s notes will be under Class Notes and The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas
  • OpenLab issues? E-mail Professor Belli to let her know and send a copy of your work as well.
  • “Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.” Give yourself wiggle room to allow for contingencies, it’s encouraged to work on your blogs sooner rather than later.
  • Read and think about short poem (in Schedule)
  • Watch Russian short film
  • No new readings until the end of next week
  • Staring at the end of next week we will begin with Station Eleven, if you are slow reader it is suggested you begin reading soon

Text:  The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas

“How much are we willing to overlook for happiness?”

FreewriteWould you walk away from Omelas? 5 Minutes

Key Points from Freewrite Discussion:

  • Happiness
  • What does it mean to walk away from Omelas?
  • Trolley Problem; Utilitarianism

   Utilitarianism – the greatest good for the greatest number

• Consider: What gets elided (glossed over) under Utilitarianism?

  • Take control of our own happiness, life, and destiny
  • Scale over Possibility
  • Leave to another form of control; risk; is what you leave better than where you’re going?
  • “the grass is always greener on the other side” “the known” is certain
  • Settling vs. Seeking; the heart of possibility
  • Pragmatic; we are accepting of our country’s faults, we don’t care, we live in injustice
  • Taking action in Omelas; walking away from Omelas but also walking away from the child

Utopia –  an imaginary perfect place; perfect; peaceful; heaven; ideal; unrealistic; Utopias are usually pejorative

Etymology: Topos (land), Eu (good), Ou (no) → “The good place that is no place” ; Eu and Ou are an Allision

Pejorative – having a bad connotation

Utopian – focused on the ideal of what could be

Generic – adj. of Genre; related to Genre

Coined – create

Eponymous – having the name of something; to be named after

Etymology: Onoma meaning name

Utopia comes from a book titled Utopia written by Sir Thomas More in 1516

The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas is an earlier work of author Ursula LeGuin, she won the Hugo Award for TOWWAFO.

Hugo Award – yearly sci-fi work award

Parable – short story that teaches a moral lesson; often biblical


Handout: Will be available online soon! While we read texts going forward, this is a guide to to help, if you’re stuck on a blog post and don’t know what to write about you can make a post answering/about the questions

People’s Choice: Daniel



Here’s the world as it is → Here’s what it could be

Is vs. Ought

What is the gap between what the world is and what it could be? → Utopianism

Soma – things people do or take in order to be distracted from reality (ex: Drooz in TOWWAFO)

The idea of the “Other”; the marginalized figure

POV/Narrator in TOWWAFO?

A shift from Our/We to I/They, separating themselves from the people of Omelas

Why do we have to become invested?

Utopias can become quite boring because nothing happens, everything is fine, as opposed to dystopias where everything is not fine.

Complicit – culpable; if you know and do nothing you are complicit

The is another child in Omelas

Juxtaposition between the two children; both children are alone

The child is referred to as an “It” throughout the story; objectification of the child

Objectification – treat something/someone like an object

class notes 9/19/17

Class notes 9/19/17


Christopher Hamilton


Continuing The yellow wallpaper.

Group discussion on writing.


  • We discussed the narrator is talking as if reading a journal
  • Whenever john is mentioned in changes the tone of the writing language
  • The writing is self expression of the main character
  • John is so controlling it threatens her to the point where she hides her writing.
  • She writes so much it exhaust her but she won’t stop cause it’s the only thing she controls and it makes her comfortable.
  • The story is written in first person but almost in real-time even tho this written down almost as if reporting the very scenes of the main character daily life.

Word Definition

Hysteria comes from the word uterus.

Hysteria-exaggerated or uncontrollable emotion or excitement, especially among a group of people.

Allusion-an expression designed to call something to mind without mentioning it explicitly; an indirect or passing reference.

Illusion-a thing that is or is likely to be wrongly perceived or interpreted by the senses.

Impertinence- lack of respect

Contemporary- Something popular now in this time. Ex.Fake news

Wier Mitchell is an allusion and used as a threat by John to get her to do what he wants to do because he will implement the rest cure.



2 page is firsttime wallpaper is noticed

The nursery room is dull and uncomfortable

3rd paragraph down the room where the wallpaper was described

Wallpaper in the room was very unattractive to her, it even stopped her from writing briefly.

She felt confined in the room

Bared mirrors in the nursery represents Jail or prison for 

The paper and wallpaper became personified through her attraction to it.

She begins to see figures that anger her in the walpaper

Impertinence- lack of respect



Class Notes 9/14

Hello, Fellow classmates this is the notes for today. PLEASE, PLEASE PLEASE, add more to if i missed anything.  Sorry this is so late I got home from work at 12 AM. Please forgive me

Today we continued to discuss the story The Yellow Wallpaper. We worked in groups. There were groups of 5.

We talked about the

Settings: When and Where the story takes place. As a whole

Reliability: The Narrator’s tone and voice. Is the narrator reliable

Queer: As how it mean in the story: Strange, Odd, Unnatural.

The writing of the story.

We were working on textual evidence and citation.

I would like to start with Citations first

Why do we cite? 

We cite because we do not want to plagiarize. It is important when  you use sources for your work to cite it. If you cite your work, someone who is reading your text can go back to check the source if they chose to and find the content that you have cited. Citing a work shows that you have support for your work.

MLA= Is a type of citation. MLA stands for Modern Language Association. it is the governing professional body that deals with English.

How to Cite

with In-text-cite we start with the “quotes” and the use the () with the Author’s name and page number inside the brackets. (Gilman, 4). And period at the end of it. Example, “Thomas went to the store” (Gilman, 4).

We are expected to use citation For Monday’s blog and forward on. 

For whole works cited You will cite it at the end. We will learn more about that later on in the class.

When to cite

  1. When You are using quotations. When using quotations you have to use the full quote so you won’t plagiarize your work.
  2. When you are summarizing (using the gist of the text)
  3. When you are Paraphrasing (When you take sentence by sentence)

Using Qoutes

Well when writing blogs you have to start off with a Topic/ claim. Please do not start with quotes.

Claim Key requirement

Make it Debatable,  Base on something, Has to introduce, Detail, and significance. Don’t just say it has an affect, but talk about what is the affect.

If you need to make a point about some change that occurred in the story, talk about how it was before the change.

When you do use quotes, you can’t just throw them in your blog. You will have to introduce the quote. Set it up.

When you do give the quote, add on to it. Analyze it. Do Not Repeat it. Talk about  how you understand the quote and how it relates to you.

Great Jobs! 

GREAT JOB: Everybody on quoting, but now we need to Cite!

GREAT JOB: Of bringing in the text and annotating it!


Crowd Source:  When sources comes from everyone.

Fancy: Excitable. Given over to imagination. Fantasy

Homework: read and blog the story The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas by Monday 9/18 before 11:59 pm. Use the MLA Citation in your blogs  and number the pages of the story that you print out to bring to class.

Also: Copy the excerpt of the student’s blog that you’ve like  what the Student said about the Yellow Wallpaper and put it under the category: Class discussion The Yellow Wallpaper. Or click on Class Discussion #1: Favorite Excerpts from Student Blog Posts on “The Yellow Wallpaper”

Extra Credit

For, extra credit, go to the Brooklyn Book Festival this Sunday. You can go to any of the talks that you want to. Blog about it and put it under the Category Extra Credit. Those who missed a blog, This extra credit can help! 🙂

NO CLASS NEXT WEEK THURSDAY! but Next week Tuesday class is a THURSDAY!

Tuesday we will continue with the Yellow Wallpaper 🙂

Please, if I missed anything Please fill free to add



Class Notes 9/12

First of all so sorry guys i am posting this up now. I am horrible at this!!!

Things we did on Tuesday 9/12:




PRINT OUT SOMEONE’S BLOG ( we will talk about why is it important to you, why did you pick that especific blog.


Finish girl and if any had questions, we could go back to them.

-Narration and Context

-No burning questions or comments.

Questions of Identity, Perception, Freedom,

(Most of us liked the Yellow Wallpaper) lol


Move on to Puertoricanness, Evaluate it and go into context as to being puertoricanness:

“No longer keep her accent under lock and key” – to be set free

We concluded that the narrator is a SHE.

A shift- conflict- “lock &key”


Conflict- tension, character, plot. (it’s almost always resolved!)

external ( vs. society, environment, human vs. human)

internal (vs. yourself, like getting up in the morning, we all have internal conflicts/wars with ourselves at all times. whether to eat pizza or not, to cross a bridge or not, to go to class today or not. )

I did not have an internal conflict typing this up, JUST finishing my Calculus HW.

INTERNAL CONFLICT- often short-handed, you struggle with something.

AMBIVALENCE- Conflict between 2 things, having 2 different feelings about something.

there is usually a consequence to whatever you decide but when it comes to this word, it is either coming to class or be affected by your grades when you aren’t present to do the classwork and participation.


Self VS. Identity- Internal

Self VS. Society- External

1st sentence: “Waking up inside her” what was dormant? (like a lightbulb just turning on)

PERSONIFICATION of PR being a character.

Paragraph 5 Sentence 2: being caught between 2 worlds, being an immigrant, accent, pronounciation.

PACE/TIMING when she says, “Interrupt me back!”

Her Puertoricanness– Noun, semi-made up word. (essence of being puerto rican.

Puerto Rican- ADJECTIVE describing a person

ANALYSIS- stay grounded, do not stray because of what the author feels. Your idea or your opinion can change because of what we are percepting. 

Puertoricanness- “The way you leave the stove on with food ready…..” Part of culture-Home-Social Aspect

SPONTANEOUS- not expected? just pops up. (think of spontaneous combustion)

IDIOSYNCRASIES- unique to you or to me, not generally to other people.

Narrator identifies being Puerto Rican conflicting.

“Come mija, quieres cafe?” is the way that she starts speaking spanish during the reading intentional?

Yes, to show she misses herself, waking up to the sound of that rooster, to show her puertoricanness, to be set free when speaking her language.Spanish comes out mid-sentence.

1st half of the story is in english until she is no longer under lock and key.

She is becoming more authentic, UNRAVELING.

It’s like she is becoming PR, with an American culture cape hovering above all of that inner self.

SYMBOLISM- personification, manifestation of conflict, diction


The rooster- cannot be repressed- who she really is, TRUE SELF (but she loved it)

IDENTIFICATION “she was like the rooster” (simile- using like or as)

It reminded her of home. (Home being PR)

The rooster prompted the memory of the rooster back home.

Neighbors did not like the rooster- they cursed it, pissed them off.



LAST PARAGRAPH: She accepted herself, puerto rican and american, two cultures inside her, going in the bus to buy vacalao. it all just ends up coming together, conflict is resolved, she gave in. It is all balanced now, no more heartbreak between herself.

SYNTHESIS- coming together


Start on Yellow Wallpaper(not finished yet, re read and comment on a classmate’s blog)

We only did the first couple of pages.

DISCUSSION TIP:  when talking about the story make sure to include page #, column #, paragraph #, and line #.

Setting/ Imagery: uninhabited for a long time, (untenanted Paragraph 4)

“Colonial Mansion”

John is her husband-says that she is not sick, yet he gives her medication (CONTRADICTING).

CREDIBILITY- He is a physician( like her brother)- High Standing

John- controlling (Practical when she is emotional)

Believes in hard facts (Tangible)

Laughs at her, scoffs at her, does not take her seriously.

Treats her like a child, He puts her away from room with flowers. He puts her in a horrible NURSERY

Does not aknowledge her actual being sick

Dismisses everyone around her, he wants he to stay alone in a way. ALIENATES HER.




1st person POV- only her perspective-SUBJECTIVE-RELIABLE?

Narrator has a big imagination, (Paragraph 2- she talks about romantic felicity, and haunted house, like she hopes for the house to be haunted.

EXTERNAL CONFLICT- Husband and Brother are physicians, they take control of the narrator’s life. WHO IS IN CONTROL?

The story is told through her, the setting and imagery but also take a look at the role of her writing.  Her relationship to writing. How she writes and when is she writing.( we will discuss this in class tomorrow!)

Once again guys, sorry for posting this late. I made it as detailed as possible, if you have anything to add feel free to do so!



Class Notes 9/7


Print, read, annotate, and blog about the ” Yellow Wallpaper”. The blog is due on 09/11 ( Monday night).

Make sure to bring all reading assignments to class next Tuesday.

In your reading responses have at least three text evidences.

REMINDER: Reread the blogging guidelines. The titles should not be ‘reading response #1’ or ‘my reading response for Girl’.



  • Analyze –  is the practice of looking closely at small parts to see how they affect the whole, breaking the text apart.
  • Synthesis  –  is to combine two or more elements to form a new whole, putting the text together.
  • Direct dialogue – a conversation between the characters in the story.
  • Indirect dialogue –  summary of a dialogue.
  • Oxymoron – two opposite ideas are joined to create an effect in a text.
  • Prodox – a statement that appears to contradict itself, but may be the same.
  • Prose Poem – applies a natural flow of speech/rhythm.


Tips for blogging

  • Don’t be reductive ( Tending to present a subject or problem in a simplified form ) in your blogging. Pay attention and include details in a complex situation.
  • Pick a focus point, and then find evidence in the text to support the blog. 
  • It’s important to transition from one paragraph to another. The topic sentences of each paragraph needs to be a connected link. 
  • Don’t write about endless observations of each paragraph. Instead, analyze and focus on why it’s important and link it.

If anyone has any questions or thoughts about the readings that you would like to discuss, feel free to post and comment!


Class Notes 9/5


  • Classroom change :  N705. This will be PERMANENT 
  • Blogging Workshop Thursday
  • Quiz on Elements of Fiction Thursday 9/7
  • Bring in stories for class Thursday (reread and annotate)


  • Genre: A type of literature
  • Character: The people who have a part in the story
  • Agency: To do things on your own
  • Narrator: Story teller who may or may not be apart of the story
  • Point of View (P.O.V): How the story is told
  • Omniscient: Knowing things that happen outside the story (Omi =all) (Scient= knowledge)
    • First person is associated with pronoun I or We
    • Second person is associated with the pronoun You
    • Third person is associated with the pronoun He, She, It
  • Limited: Knowing only what one person knows
  • Voice: The persona of the text
  • Tone: How the narrator feels about the story
  • Juxtaposition: Placing two things side by side
  • Forestall: To prevent something from happening
  • Hastened: To move quickly
  • Personification: Giving human characteristics to something not living
  • Simile: Two things being compared using the words ‘like or as’
  • Metaphor:  Two things being compared WITHOUT using the words like or as

Story of An Hour


  • Protagonist : Mrs. Mallard
  • Richard : Mrs. Mallard husband friend
  • Brently Mallard : deceased husband
  • Josephine : Mrs. Mallard sister

¶2 “It was her sister Josephine who told her, in broken sentences; veiled hints that revealed in half concealing.” -Shows that her sister was beating around the bush , trying not to hurt her.

¶3 “She did not hear the story as many women have heard the same, with a paralyzed inability to accept its significance. She wept at once, with sudden, wild abandonment, in her sister’s arm. When the storm of grief had spent itself she went away too her room alone…” – In this paragraph we find out how she reacts to hearing the news of her husband passing away

  • “Storm of grief” is a metaphor which her grieving is being compared to being a storm without using the words like or as.
  • “Wild abandonment” brings out how deeply the news of her husband affected her

¶4″…facing the open window, a comfortable, roomy armchair. Into this she sank, pressed down by a physical exhaustion that haunted her body and seemed to reach into her soul” – In this paragraph this is where the tone of the text changes from sad to slightly freedom.

  • “A comfortable, roomy armchair”, armchairs are only for one person, how can it be roomy? Maybe foreshadowing?
  • Imagery is presented a lot in this paragraph, “..the open window, a comfortable, roomy armchair”.



Class Notes for Thursday, 8/31

Hello Class,

Here are the notes I took on todays class, as well as some reminders for next Tuesday’s class. I didn’t quite get everything but this is most of what was discussed!

What kinds of things do we annotate while we read?

  • Vocabulary words unfamiliar to us
  • Key lines in the story (Similes, Metaphors, language/dialogue
  • Parts of the story that stand out or can be important or pertinent to the message
  • Characters, protagonist/antagonist, plot
  • Foreshadowing
  • Mood/Setting

Objective: Factual, unbiased information

Subjective: Biased preferences or personal opinion

Why do we reread stories?

  • To go over important info that may have been missed by the reader
  • To get a better sense of what the text is saying/the message

Characterization:  Learning about characters and their traits.

Denotation: A dictionary’s definition of something

Connotation: Your idea or feeling of what something means


Bring in printed copies of “Girl” by Jamaica Kincaid, “Puertoricanness” by Aurora Levins Morales, and

Blog a response to EITHER ‘Girl” or “Puertoricanness”, by Monday at 11:59pm!

See you guys next Tuesday!

Class Notes from Tue. 8/29

BTW, I took notes on as many of my colleagues as I could. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get everyone or every bit of info about them though. I apologize in advance for leaving anyone out, misspelling the names of individuals, or leaving out/mistaking some information.


Jordan: Major- Liberal Arts in Science. Mostly Biology and some Chemistry. Fun Fact- Jordan stutters.

Patrick: Major- Mechanical Engineering Technology. Fun Fact- Patrick likes paleontology and related biology.

Kainat: Major- Liberal Arts in Science. Fun Fact- Kainat fainted on a roller coaster and the ride had to be stopped so she could get off.

Shaquina: Major- Human Services. She likes to read anime.

Timothy: Major- Liberal Arts. Timothy took this course because it’s a requirement. By taking this class, he hopes to write with more structure. Timothy likes to travel.

Melissa: Major- Fashion Marketing. She took this class in hopes of improving her writing. Melissa likes to sew.

Adrian: He likes to hang out.

Sebastian: Major- Computer Engineering. He’s from Colombia. Sebastian transferred from Queensboro. He likes to eat food.

Christopher: Game Designer. He’s a great storyteller.

Blanca: She likes Dragonball and wants to do something related to military.

Terry: Likes the rock band, Linkin Park. Likes skateboarding.

Jeffrey: Major- Liberal Arts. Jeffrey likes to play games.

Samuel: Major- Math Education. Samuel likes working with students.

Heather: Major- Computer Systems. He works at a club with a friend.

Steven: He’s a Senior and likes to build stuff, especially computers.

Paneena: Chemistry. She likes to draw.

Imani: She likes to do hair.

Chris: He likes long drives and walks on the beach.

Professor Belli: This is her 6th year at City Tech and her 13th at CUNY. She likes books and writing. The professor taught science fiction and is writing an academic book. Her favorite book is 1984.


Once again, I’m sorry if I misspelled any of your names and unintentionally left out or got some info wrong.


Due Thursday 8/29

Read papers handed out in class on Tuesday. Go over the syllabus, the grading rubric for blogging, and the English Department Learning Outcomes handout.

If you haven’t done so before, sign in to OpenLab to become a member. Join the course’s site. Become familiar with using OpenLab. Check OpenLab regularly for assignments, updates, announcements, etc.

Read and annotate the two passages given in Tuesday’s class: The Story of an Hour by Kate Chopin and For Better Social Skills, Scientists Recommend a Little Chekhov by Pam Belluck.

Remember to get a hard copy of both post-apocalyptic novels, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood and Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. This is very important because the novels are meant to be brought to class.

Remember the following, which is the course’s grading policy:

Participation: 10%

Exams: 20%

Essays: 40%

Blogging/OpenLab Composing: 30%

For more info, questions, or help on anything pertaining to the course, check OpenLab’s Schedule frequently or contact Professor Belli by office hours (Tuesdays/Thursdays 3:45-4:45PM after class) or e-mail (