All posts by Christina Ming



  1. To conquer or subdue by superior force, as in battle
  2. To defeat in any contest or conflict: be victorious over
  3. To overcome or overpower

The word is used in A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner on the first paragraph of part II, “So she vanquish them, horse and foot, just as she had vanquished their fathers before about the smell”

The meaning of the word I understand is that Emily defeat them or overcome them (next generation of Colonel Sartoris whose become mayor and alderman) with her superior force or power that she had liked by saying she did not owe any money to the town and told Tobe, her male servant, to show them to the way out like she did to their father before about the smell.





  1. To dull or destroy the luster of by or as if by air, dust or dirt
  2. To detract from good quality of

The word is used In A Rose for Emily by William Faulkner of the paragraph 5, “A tarnished gilt easel before the fireplace stood a crayon portrait of Miss Emily’s father”.

The gold color frame of Miss Emily’s father portrait was detracted from original color caused by air or dust and it looked like the color of the penny coins become tarnish when changing between hands so many times.



1) Not very good

2) Of moderate or low quality, value, ability or performance: ordinary,  so-so

The word “mediocre” is used in Beloved by Toni Morrison on Page 58. My understanding of the word means although the carnival that Paul D, Sethe and Denver went, was a lot low in quality than the ordinary but it was an exciting and fun for them and for hundreds of colored people with the small price that they spend.



Artillery- Noun- 1) large guns that are used to shoot over a great distance

2) The part of an army that uses large guns to shoot over a great                     distance

The word is found in the story of “What you Pawn I will Redeem” by Sherman Alexie in the paragraph of

One day, she tended to a wounded Maori soldier, who had lost his legs to an artillery attack. He was very dark-skinned. His hair was black and curly and his eyes were black and warm.

Jackson Jackson was talking about the story of a patient who lost his legs during the attack of using large guns or weapons, his grandmother taking care off.



Hitchhike –Verb-  to get a ride in a passing vehicle by holding out your arm with your thumb up as you stand on the side of the road

The word hitchhike is used in the story of “What you Pawn I will Redeem” by Sherman Alexie.

Rose of Sharon was gone when I woke up. I heard later that she had hitchhiked back to Toppenish and was living with her sister on the reservation.

Jackson and his friends were fall asleep after trying so hard to figure out how to get the money that Jackson needed to buyback his grandmother’s regalia. When Jackson waked up one of his friend Rose of Sharon had a ride to her hometown Toppenish and living with her sister.


Powwow- Noun-  1) a social gathering of Native Americans that usually includes dancing

2) a meeting for people to discuss something

The word powwow is used several times throughout the story of “What you Pawn I will Redeem” by Sherman Alexie.

The narrator or the main character of the story Jackson Jackson was looking for his grandmother’s stolen garment that she wore for their tribe’s social or special occasions.


Fierce- Adjective- having or showing a lot of strong emotion: very strong or intense

Fiercely- Adverb- 1) in a fierce or vehement manner

2) to a high degree: very

The word is used in the Shawl by Louise Erdrich which can find on the third paragraph.

When the uncle came around to fetch Aanakwad, in his wagon fitted out with sled runners, it was very hard, for she and her husband had argued right up to the last about the children, argued fiercely until the husband had finally given in.

Aanakwad and her husband had a strong argument about their children when the uncle of her lover came around to bring her. Finally she brought her daughter and left the son with the husband.



Noun – 1) a piece of clothing that is used as a coat that has no sleeves and that is worn over the shoulders and attached at the neck

2) a thing that hides or covers someone or something

The word is used in the Shawl by Louise Erdrich which can find on second to the last paragraph.

First, I told him that keeping his sister’s shawl was wrong, because we never keep the clothing of the dead. Now’s the time to burn it, I said. Send it off to cloak her spirit. And he agreed.

The narrator is talking to his father about not to keep the shawl of his dead aunt’s shawl.  My understanding of the paragraph is that, according to their cultural believe, they do not keep the clothes of the dead. Burning her clothes (her belongings –shawl) mean send the shawl to her so that she can use it to cover her spirit on the other side.


Monotonous- Adj–Tediously repetitious or lacking in variety or boring

The word “monotonously” is found on the second paragraph of the Shawl by Louise Erdrich.

“If she could have thrown off that wrong hearted love, she would have, but the thought of the other man, who lived across the lake, was with her always. She became a gray sky, stared monotonously at the walls, sometimes wept into her hands for hours at a time. Soon, she couldn’t rise to cook or keep the cabin neat…”

The meaning of the word I understand is that the woman who lost her interest when she was in love with another man who was not her husband . She was so in love with him and the passion and the thought that she has for that man took all her interest and she was not able to function her daily routine like cooking, cleaning and taking care of her baby.


Infuriated- Verb—to make (someone) very angry: to make (someone) furious

The word is found on Beloved ( pg 295)

“Denver thought she understood the connection between her mother and Beloved. Sethe was trying to make up for the handsaw; Beloved was making her pay for it. But there would never be an end to that, and seeing her mother diminished shamed and infuriated her. “

The meaning of the word that I understand is that Denver was very angry about seeing the way her mother treated Beloved which she tried to fulfilled all Beloved needs and she was making up for what she did to her . Her mother was afraid as if she would leave if she did not fulfill her needs. Beloved was demanding more and more for her mother as if she supposed to pay back for what she had done to her and Denver knew that that will never be end.