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Tutor profile: Annie K.

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Annie K.
Undergraduate Political Science Major at McGill University
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Questions

Subject: Writing

TutorMe
Question:

Showcase a unique way to engage your audience at the beginning of your writing piece. Make sure to signpost the tone of the piece, as well as the overall subject, so as to ensure your audience knows where the piece is headed.

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Annie K.
Answer:

The United State’s intervention in the Vietnam War was not born of a heavenly moral desire to rescue the South Vietnamese from a horrendous communist rule. Rather, the American decision to transform this local conflict into an international war was a result of the endless American desire for ultimate global power. Whilst it can be argued that the original containment policy was born of just and true intentions, it was quickly warped by the anarchic international state system and resulted in the subsequent policies of the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan, which each aimed to directly increase U.S world hegemony. Ultimately this led the U.S to intervene in the Vietnam War via the increased tensions between the U.S and the Soviet Union that it established.

Subject: Literature

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Question:

Using a comparison of two novels, explore how has the English novel changed from the early nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century? Specifically, analyze how themes and structures of novels have changed to suit changing cultural tastes.

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Annie K.
Answer:

The English novel has dramatically changed from the early nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. As showcased through an analysis of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys, the structure of novels, as well as their aesthetic preferences, greatly depends on the time period and culture that they reside in. Pride and Prejudice, written in 1801 by Jane Austen, is a perfect example of a Romantic period novel. Pride and Prejudice is a domestic realism novel, and so asks the question, ‘How will this small, closed-off society react to these specific societal problems?’. It functions via a ‘plot machine’, which was very common for novels of its time. Meaning that the novel feeds a handful of problems into the plot, which then inherently solves the problems. For example, the problem of five unmarried daughters could be easily solved through the arrival of the rich, handsome, unmarried Mr. Darcy to their town. However, as is typical of Romantic period novels, the characters need to grow in order to allow these solutions to occur. Furthermore, Pride and Prejudice showcases the aesthetic preferences of the Romantic period quite evidently. Primarily, it is filled with connections to nature. It uses nature to establish connections between characters, as well as to construct the protagonists. For example, Elizabeth is clearly the female protagonist, and is a very typical Romantic one at that, due to her strong connection to nature. This is evident when in response to her Aunt’s suggestion that they go visit the lakes, she says, “... what delight! what felicity! You give me fresh life and vigor … What are young men to rocks and mountains?” (Austen, p.g 181). Finally, a further example of the strong role that nature plays in Pride and Prejudice is seen when Elizabeth visits Mr. Darcy’s estate Pemberley. This is a key moment in Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy’s relationship, as she sees how it is a beautiful extension of nature and begins to soften her opinion of him. She notes how, “She had never seen a place for which nature had done more, or where natural beauty had been so little counteracted by an awkward taste.”, and decides that, “... to be mistress of Pemberley might be something!” (Austen, p.g 259). Clearly, the wonders of nature is a strong aesthetic preference of the Romantics. Overall, Pride and Prejudice is a domestic realism novel that focuses on small, societal issues, and places a large emphasis on the beauty and importance of nature. Finally, Wide Sargasso Sea written in 1966 by Jean Rhys, is an example of a modern novel that showcases the evolution of the novel from the early nineteenth century to now. To begin, Wide Sargasso Sea addresses head-on, large, serious societal issues that pertain to world-wide society. It deals with the ramifications of colonialism, as well as issues of race, sexual mistreatment and mental illness. Such as Antoinette wondering, “... who [she is] and where is [her] country and where do[es she] belong and why was [she] ever born at all.” (Rhys, p.g 93). These issues are much larger and more difficult to ‘solve’ than the small societal issues of class and social hierarchy that the previous novels center themselves around. Moreover, the novel also plays with narrator reliability, through using both Mr. Rochester and Antoinette’s point of view - which is a very modern concept. Furthermore, very few of the plot problems outlined at the beginning of the novel are actually solved. ‘Solutions’ are found, such as Antoinette marrying Mr. Rochester in order to solve her lack of a home and husband, but this ultimately leads to even larger issues. The novel most certainly does not function in the plot machine structure that was seen in Pride and Prejudice. Furthermore, an interesting similarity to note, is that the Wide Sargasso Sea still maintains a connection to nature. Nature is still described as its own powerful entity, and the characters that are at odds with it, most notably Mr. Rochester, are the antagonists of the novel. This is seen on his first encounter with the island when he states that it has, “Too much blue, too much purple, too much green. The flowers too red, the mountains too high, the hills too near.” (Rhys, p.g 63). To continue, Wide Sargasso Sea has a strong focus on character psychology. This is evidence of the modern desire to explore the human psyche and truly delve into the mindset of each character. Finally, the aesthetics of Wide Sargasso Sea are a step forward of those in Jane Eyre - it is a darker novel, that has more modern sexual themes underlying it, and is much more explicit in these as well. Conclusively, whilst Wide Sargasso Sea maintains importance on the role of nature, it is much darker, much more explicit, and tackles more serious and large issues that Pride and Prejudice. In conclusion, the English novel has evolved tremendously since the early nineteenth century. As showcased through Pride and Prejudice, and Wide Sargasso Sea, novels have become darker, more explicit, more complicated in terms of plot and centered around larger, more pressing issues. Despite this, they have managed to still maintain that initial connection to nature. This progression showcases an evolution in aesthetic tastes over time and hence proves that novels are truly just a projection of the society and culture that they are written in.

Subject: English

TutorMe
Question:

Which of the following prepositions on, in or at, is put before the following words: 1. ___ the moment 2. ___ TV 3. ___ Christmas

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Annie K.
Answer:

1. At 2. On 3. On

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