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Monday, August 15, 2016

Character in Literature


A character refers to a fictional person portrayed by the author in a play, novel, short story, or poetry. Sometimes animals and objects are also adopted as characters, but they are presented by means of personification. Characters play a vital role in the development of the central theme of a literary work through their dialogue, actions, mood and attitude.

Types of Characters

  1. Dynamic Character: A dynamic character is one who undergoes significant change in his traits/qualities such as, personality or outlook, etc. throughout the story. Through suffering, mistakes and experiment a dynamic character gains new experience which in turn makes him a changed man. For example, initially Ebenezer Scrooge from Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol (1843) is portrayed as a mean, bitter, and covetous personality. However, after his encounter with the three ghosts he becomes a generous, kind, and beloved man. In fact, the term "dynamic" doesn't define the character's qualities, but rather refers to how those qualities change over time. Dynamic characters are usually central characters.
  2. Static Character: A static character is one who does not undergo any significant transition in his traits/qualities such as, personality, outlook, etc. throughout the events in the story's plot. In other words, a static character is mostly the same person at the end of the story as he was in the beginning and all his actions in between stay true to that personality. Mr. Collins from Pride and Prejudice (1813) by Jane Austen is an example of static character since his character does not change until the end of the novel. Static characters are generally the minor characters.
  3. Round Character: A round character is a major character in a story that encounters conflicts and undergoes transformation by these with a sign of emotional and psychological development. The character is complex and it increases in complexity throughout the story. Although many people place the dynamic and round characters in one category, yet they are not the same thing.  A dynamic character does not tell about the traits of the character rather only tells about the traits that change over the time. A round character, on the other hand defines the complex traits of the character.
  4. Flat Character: A flat character is relatively uncomplicated and does not transform too much from the start of the narrative to its end. Flat characters are constructed round a single idea or quality and often said not to have either surprising ability or emotional depths, hence such characters are easily recognizable. Although both the static and the flat characters remain unchanged throughout the story, there is a slight difference between them. Whereas the former has two dimensions and can be as interesting as the central character, the latter generally has only one dimension and is only capable of playing a minor role.
  5. Protagonist: The protagonist is the main character or leading figure in a story, novel, drama, or poetry. Sometimes the protagonist is represented as an antihero. However, even as antihero the protagonist is able retain the audience’s interest and keeps propelling the story forward. For example, In Shakespeare’s play, Romeo and Juliet (1597), Romeo is the protagonist.
  6. Antihero: An antihero is a protagonist who is devoid of all conventional qualities such as, bravery, strength, charm, intelligence etc. Such character usually possesses traits like clumsiness, dishonesty, aggressiveness, fearfulness, etc.
  7. False Protagonist: A false protagonist is a trick used by the authors to bring about an unexpected twist in the plot. The false protagonist is presented in such a way that the audience takes him to be the central character. However, this misconception is resolved when the character is unexpectedly removed by killing or changing his role, often into a lesser character or antagonist.
  8. Antagonist: The antagonist is a major character in a story who stands in opposition or creates obstacles to the protagonist. The conflict between the antagonist and the protagonist often generates the action or plot of the work. However, an antagonist must not be confused with a villain. The role of an antagonist is to oppose and create obstruction to the protagonist's goal, while a villain is a character who acts in opposition of the hero with evil intentions. While not every antagonist is a villain, it is generally true that all villains are antagonists to the main character.
  9. Villain: A villain plays the role of the principal bad character in a work of fiction. The villain usually is the antagonist who acts in opposition of the protagonist. However, in some cases the protagonist may assume the role of a villain.
  10. Stock Character: A stock character is a stereotypical person who is instantly recognizable to most readers. These characters are types and not individuals. A Stock character is based on clichés and social prejudices. Examples include: the professor, the wise old man, the everyman, the gentleman thief, etc. They are not focus characters nor are they developed in the story. The stock character does almost nothing to affect the main characters and can be easily replaced with a new character.
  11. Foil: A foil is employed to enhance the qualities of another character through contrast. Usually a foil is the antagonist or an important supporting character whose personal traits contrast with the protagonist or a major character. However, foils are not focus characters nor are they developed in the story. They help us learn more about another character or aspect of a story. For instance, In Hamlet (1603), Laertes has been portrayed as a foil to Hamlet.
  12. Confidante (masc: Confidant): A character in a drama or fiction, such as a friend or servant, who the protagonist confides in and trusts. A confidant serves as a device for revealing the inner thoughts or intentions of a main character. Her role is to listen to the protagonist's secrets, examine his character, and advise him on his actions. Rather than simply acting as a passive listener for the protagonist's monologues, the confidant may himself act to move the story forward, or serve to guide and represent the reactions of the audience. For example Horatio in Shakespeare’s Hamlet (1603).
  13. Viewpoint Character: Also called narrator. A type of character by whose perspective or eyes the audience witnesses the events in a narrative. Generally the narrator narrates the events from several points of view or perspectives. Based on perspectives a narrator  is categorized in:
    1. First Person Narrator: A first person narrator is said to have used when the story is told someone who identifies himself or herself as “I". This "I" can be the main character, a less important character witnessing events, or a person retelling a story they were told by someone else.
    2. Second Person Narrator: In second person, the narrator addresses the protagonist as "you." Often, this kind of story has the narrator speaking to a younger version of his self.
    3. Third Person Narrator is used when the story is told by someone who is not a participant in the action and who refers to the characters by name or as ‘he‘ 'she" and "they". In this case the narrator is not a character in the story. Third person narrator has two variations:
      1. Omniscient Narrator: This type of narrator knows everything about the characters and events, can move about in time and place as well as from character to character at will, and can, whenever he or she wishes, enter the mind of any character.
      2. Limited omniscient narrator: Also called central intelligence. In this variation the narrative elements are limited to what a single character sees, thinks, and hears.


In fiction, characterization refers to the artistic representation of a person. It is the step by step process wherein the author introduces and then describes a character.  With its help the author makes a fictional character seem like a real person. Generally authors resort to the following processes to shape and form their characters:
  1. Direct Characterization: Also called explicit characterization. It is a type of characterization in which the details and personality of a character are revealed in a direct manner. In other words, in such process the author makes straightforward comments about specific traits of a character, which may include but not limited to love, hatred, fear, habits, etc. An outstanding instance of direct characterization could be traced in Sonnet 130 by the English poet and playwright William Shakespeare:
“My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun;
Coral is far more red than her lips’ red;
If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun;
If hairs be wires, black wires grow on her head.”

Direct Characterization
  1. Indirect Characterization: Also called implicit characterization. It is a process of character creation in which the author reveals the details and personality of a character by indication rather than by direct statement. Too be specific, it is the audience's task to study the character and draw a conclusion about it. Through his imagination the audience portrays a true and vivid image of the character. Hence, it is a more creative and engaging process than the direct characterization. However, it is not devoid of shortcomings since the audience may make an erroneous or inappropriate inference about a character. The audience generally infers what a character is like by analyzing:
  • his appearance.
  • his thoughts.
  • his actions.
  • his speech.
  • his interaction with other characters.
  • his manner of speech.
  • others’ remarks about him
  • what others do to him
  • his reaction to others.
  • his reaction to himself.
  • his or her environment.


Indirect Characterization

Character Traits

In literature each character reflects certain traits that guide the audience to draw conclusion about their specific roles. Some common character traits are as follows:
  • Greedy
  • Rude
  • Pessimistic
  • Wicked
  • Selfish
  • Funny 
  • Talkative
  • Shy 
  • Evil
  • Brave  
  • Cunning
  • Deceptive
  • Ambitious 

Importance of Characters

Literature is an artistic representation of the real world. More like the real world the fictional world is also incomplete without characters. Therefore, characters are inevitable elements in a literary work. The importance of characters could be outlined as under:
  1. Characters help the audience to understand the overall message or theme in a particular literary work.
  2. Characters are akin to an engine driving the whole narrative in a coherent scheme.
  3. Characters provide ample scope for developing unique plots.
  4. Well-drawn characters compel the readers to retain interest till the end of the story.
  5. Characters help the audience for better understanding of human motivations in the real world.
  6. Characters help the author to maintain the gradual flow of the story.
  7. Characters’ dialogues, actions, attitudes, etc. are considered important elements for development of the theme.



Abrams, M.H.. A Glossary of Literary Terms. 7th ed. USA: H & H, 1999

" Characterization”. Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 26 July 2016
< >.
“Characterization”. Literary Devices. 2016. Literary Devices. 26 July 2016
“Characterization 1”. English 250. 2016. English 250. 26 July 2016
Gupta, A.N. and Satis Gupta. A Dictionary of English Literature. 2nd ed. Bareilly: PBD, 1995


Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Word Formation Process


Word formation process (also called morphological process) is a means by which new words are produced either by modification of existing words or by complete innovation, which in turn become a part of the language.

Types of Word Formation Processes

Although different types of word formation processes are available, all of which basically bring either inflectional or derivational changes. Therefore, inflection (also called inflexion) and derivation are the two main processes of word formation. Inflection differs from derivation to the following extent:

Inflection Derivation
Produces grammatical variants of the same word. Produces a new word on the basis of an existing word.
Modifies a word to express different grammatical categories such as tense, mood, voice, aspect, person, number, gender and case. Changes the word class (also called parts of speech; form class; lexical class; syntactic category).
Does not change the meaning of a word. For example: determine→ determines, determining, determined. Modifies the meaning of the root. For example: modern → modernize (to make modern).

The major word formation processes include but are not limited to the following:


It is a word formation process wherein an affix is attached to a root (also called stem; base) to form a new word. A root is a free morpheme (also called unbound morpheme) that can appear alone. On the other hand, an Affix is a bound morpheme which never occurs by itself, but is always attached to some free morpheme and can be either inflectional or derivational. An Inflectional affix modifies the form/grammatical category of a word, i.e., tense, person, number, gender, case, etc. For example: ratrats. Contrariwise, a derivational affix modifies the parts of speech of the root, while leaving the grammatical category unchanged. In this way there is a change of meaning of the root. For example: write → writer.

In English there are two types of affixations:
  1. Prefixation: In this morphological process words are formed by adding an affix to the front of a root. The type of affix used in this process is referred to prefix. For example: un + tidy untidy
  2. Suffixation: In this morphological process words are formed by adding an affix to the end of a root. The type of affix used in this process is referred to suffix. For example: fear + less fearless


This refers to the change of function or parts of speech of a word without adding an affix. Conversion is also called zero derivation or null derivation since the functional change is brought about by supplementing an invisible affix. Sometimes it is also called functional shift. Typically conversion is made from “noun to verb” and from “verb to noun”. Less frequently, conversion is also done from “adjective to verb” and “adjective to noun”. For instance:

 Noun to Verb:  
  • access
  • email
  • film
  • name
  • shape
Verb to Noun:
  • attack
  • alert
  • hope
  • increase
  • visit
  • cover
Adjective to Verb:
  • brown
  • black
  • slow
Adjective to Noun:
  • crazy
  • nasty


Back-formation is a morphological process in which new word is created by extracting affixes from another word. In this way it is the reverse of affixation, in which affixes are added. Back-formation is also different from clipping since it brings a change in the parts of speech or the word's meaning. For example: the noun insertion has been back-formed into verb insert by removing the suffix ion.


As the name suggests, clipping is the word formation process in which a word is reduced to a shorter form. With a sharp contrast to back-formation, clipping keeps the original word meaning intact. These words are very common in everyday speech. For instance: lab is the clipped form of laboratory. . There are four types of clippings:
  1. Back clipping: (also called final clipping; apocope) it involves the truncation of end of a word as in ad from advertisement.
  2. Fore-clipping: (also called initial clipping; apheresis) it is the removal of the beginning of a word as in phone from telephone.
  3. Middle clipping: (also medial clipping; syncope) it is the extraction of the beginning and end of a word as in flu from influenza.
  4. Complex clipping: is removing multiple parts from multiple words as in cablegram from cabletelegram.


Also called composition, by this process two or more than two words are combined together to create a single word, having a single idea and function. In English there are compound nouns, compound adjectives, and compound verbs. Customarily compound words are spelt as single word, or as two or more hyphenated words, and even as two or more separate words. For example:
  • life + style lifestyle
  • mother + in + law mother-in-law
  • shopping + mall shopping mall
There are no specific rules for hyphenated compounds. Generally, some new and original compound nouns are hyphenated, but the hyphen is ignored when they become more familiar. However, there are some compound adjectives that are always hyphenated. For instance: state-of-the-art. The hyphen is often retained when two vowels come together, such as: Co-operation. Hyphens are often used to tell the ages of people and things, for example: 10-year-old. The general rule is that words are combined with hyphens to avoid confusion.


This refers to the words adopted from other languages. There are two types of borrowings:
  1. Loan-word: By this process a word is borrowed from another language without translating it into the target language. For example: the phrase tour-de-force is borrowed directly from French, which means a masterly or brilliant feat.
  2. Loan-translation: Also known as calque, a morphological process wherein a word or phrase from another language is borrowed by literally translating it into the target language. For example: the phrase point of view has been translated into English from the French phrase point de vue.


Also called invention, is a morphological process by which new words are invented. Sometimes popular trademark names of various products are adopted by people so extensively that they ultimately become the everyday words of language. For example:
  • Heroin
  • Aspirin
  • Escalator
  • Xerox
  • Kerosene
  • Nylon
  • Band-Aid
  • Vaseline
  • Margarine
  • Videotape
Again, some words are being invented due to rapid cultural changes and the spread of information technology, mass media, internet, etc. For example:
  • Google
  • Blog
  • Hotspot
  • Netbook
  • Tablet
  • Tweet
  • Emoticon
  • Smartphone


Blending (also called portmanteau) is a morphological process in which the parts of two or more words are combined together to form a new word. Usually the parts consist of the beginning of one word and the end of the other word(s). Typically, the meaning of the blended word reverberates with the meanings of the original words. For example:
  • breakfast + lunch → brunch
  • motor+hotel → motel
However, blending should not be confused with compounding, which combines two words without truncation of parts of the roots of the blended words.


These words are formed with the initial letters or each of the major parts of a word or a longer phrase. With a few exceptions, acronyms are usually capitalized. Some linguists confuse acronyms with initialisms, which are also abbreviations formed in the similar manner as the former. In essence, there is a sharp difference between the two. In language, an acronym is pronounced as a single word rather than just a sequence of individual letters, which is characteristic of initialisms. For example:
  • United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization → UNESCO
  • Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation → Laser
  • International Criminal Police Organization → Interpol
  • Personal Computer → PC
  • Asian Development Bank → ADB
  • Liquid Crystal Display → LCD


Reduplication (also called cloning; doubling; duplication; repetition; tautonym) is a word formation process in which a new word is created by repeating all or part of a root or a stem, often with a change of vowel or initial consonant. Reduplication is not a major means of creating lexemes in English, but it is perhaps the most unusual one. Based on their usage, the techniques of reduplication could be classified in the following manner:
  1. Repetition without Change: bye-bye, tick-tick
  2. Rhyming Reduplication: ding-dong, super-duper, bow-wow
  3. Repetition with Change of Vowel: tiptop, chitchat, flip-flop, ping-pong, dilly-dally, wishy-washy
  4. Repetition with Change of Initial Consonant: teeny-weeny





“English Word Formation Processes.” Really Learn English. 2016.
14 July 2016 <>.

 “Inflection.” Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 14 July 2016

“Morphological Derivation.” Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 14 July 2016

Yule, George. The Study of Language. 2nd ed. Cambridge: CUP, 1996.

“Word Formation.” Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 14 July 2016


Thursday, July 28, 2016

Theme in Literature


Theme refers to the general topic or subject, or the main idea in a literary work such as, a story, an essay, or a narrative. Some common examples of themes include: love, friendship, war, crime, punishment, death, revenge, nature, isolation, etc.


The basic characteristics of a theme could be outlined as under:
  • It acts as a framework for the entire literary piece.
  • It is a distinct, recurring, and unifying quality or idea.
  • It is usually universal in nature.
  • Generally conveys a moral or message about society, life or human nature.
  • Stated either direct or indirect manner.
  • Theme is abstract in nature.
  •  A theme does not necessarily need to be true in the real world.
  • Theme binds together everything: the characters, the plot and the setting.


A theme has two components namely, the thematic concept and the thematic statement. The thematic concept simply refers to the subject or topic of the work, while the thematic statement refers to what the author remarks or opines about that subject. The thematic concept thus is usually an abstract element, like “transgression” or “atonement”, while the thematic statement is generally the concretization of that abstract idea through images, setting, and most commonly through the characters’ actions, words, and thoughts. Whereas the former is expressed in word or phrase level, the latter is expressed in a sentence and is often a general statement about society, life or human nature.

Thematic Concept vs. Thematic Statement

Types of Themes

Themes are of two types: major themes and minor themes.  A Major theme is an idea which is repeated or given prominence throughout the story. Hence it acts as the central driving force in a literary work. A minor theme, on the other hand, is an idea that occurs for a short period. It is of less significance and usually appears for part of the story only to be replaced by another minor theme.

For instance, Saul Bellow’s Seize the Day (1956) consists of the following major and minor themes:
Major Themes
  • Alienation.
  • Meaningless of Life.
  • Affirmation of Human Life.
Minor Themes
  • Deceit.
  • Conflict between Father and Son.
  • Conflict between Husband and Wife.

Determining a Theme

A literary work may comprise more than one theme. The writer himself may infuse his work with multiple themes. Again, the same work may produce other themes due to reader’s individualistic way of interpretation. It is indeed, very hard to stipulate any specific yardstick for identifying a theme. This statement is very logical when we compare it with the point of individualistic interpretation as stated earlier. However, we can still try to identify themes by the following ways:
  • Studying character’s dialogues.
  • Studying character’s thoughts and feelings.
  • Studying character's actions, beliefs, etc.
  • Studying specific events and contexts.
  • Studying character’s change in mood and attitude.
  • Studying the author's background.
  • Identifying the main topics or subjects.
  • Analyzing the title of the work.
  • Determining the imagery, motifs, figure of speech, etc.
  • Identifying the presence of any universal topics, such as human struggle and so the like.





Gupta, A.N. and Satis Gupta. A Dictionary of English Literature. 2nd ed. Bareilly: PBD, 1995

Griffith, Benjamin W. A Pocket Guide to Literature and Language Terms. Newyork: Barron's, 1976

“Theme”. Literary Terms. 2016. Literary Terms. 15 July 2016 <>.

" Theme (narrative)”. Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 15 July 2016


Monday, July 11, 2016

D.H. Lawrence Quick Facts

D.H. Lawrence

20th century English novelist, short story writer, poet, playwright, and literary critic, best known for his 1928 infamous novel Lady Chatterley's Lover.

D.H. Lawrence

  • Birth Name: David Herbert Richards Lawrence
  • AKA: D.H.  Lawrence
  • Date of Birth: 11 September 1885
  • Place of Birth: Eastwood, Nottinghamshire, England, United Kingdom
  • Zodiac Sign: Virgo
  • Death: 2 March 1930
  • Place of Death: Vence, France
  • Cause of Death: Tuberculosis
  • Ethnicity: White
  • Nationality: British
  • Place of Burial: Chapel East of Taos, New Mexico (Ashes)
  • Last Words: “I’m getting better.”
  • Epitaph: “Homo sum! the adventurer.”
  • Father: Arthur John Lawrence (1847 - 1924)
  • Mother: Lydia Lawrence (née Beardsall) (1852 - 1910)
  • Siblings:
1. Brother- George Lawrence (1876 – 1967)
2. Brother- William Ernest Lawrence (1878 -1901)
3. Sister- Emily Una Lawrence (1882 -1962)
4. Sister- Lettice Ada Lawrence (1887 – 1948)
  • Spouse: Frieda Lawrence (née von Richthofen) (b. 1879 - d. 1956; m. 1914 to until his demise)
  • Children: None
  • Alma Mater: University College of Nottingham, Nottingham High School
  • Known for: linguistic precision, mastery of a wide range of subject matters and genres, psychological complexity and exploration of female sexuality
  • Criticized for: presenting controversial themes with graphic and highly sexual content
  • Influences: Herman Melville (1819 –1891), Walt Whitman (1819 –1892), Thomas Hardy (1840 –1928), Friedrich Nietzsche (1844 –1900), Sigmund Freud (1856 –1939), Ezra Pound (1885 –1972), Joseph Conrad (1857 –1924), Henri Bergson (1859–1941), Otto Gross (1877–1920), E.M. Forster (1879 – 1970), and Aldous Huxley (1894 –1963)
  • Influenced: Harriet Monroe (1860 –1936), Amy Lowell (1874 –1925), Meridel LeSueur (1900–1996), Elizabeth Bishop (1911 –1979), Tennessee Williams (1911 –1983), Carson McCullers (1917 –1967), Karl Shapiro (1913 –2000), Denise Levertov (1923 –1997), Robert Bly (b. 1926), Galway Kinnell (1927 –2014), Adrienne Rich (1929 –2012), and Ted Hughes (1930 –1998)


“But that is how men are! Ungrateful and never satisfied. When you don't have them they hate you because you won't; and when you do have them they hate you again, for some other reason. Or for no reason at all, except that they are discontented children, and can't be satisfied whatever they get, let a woman do what she may.” D.H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterley's Lover
“So as long as you can forget your body you are happy and the moment you begin to be aware of your body, you are wretched. So if civilization is any good, it has to help us forget our bodies, and then time passes happily without our knowing it. Help us get rid of our bodies altogether.” D.H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterley's Lover
“He always ran away from the battle with himself. Even in his own heart's privacy, he excused himself, saying, "If she hadn't said so-and-so, it would never have happened.” D.H. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers

Major Themes

  • Male-Female Relationship
  • Human Psyche
  • Love and Sex
  • Class Barriers
  • Homosexuality
  • Misogyny
  • The Working Class
  • Technology and Modernization
  • Leadership

Notable Works

  • The White Peacock (1911)
  • The Trespasser (1912)
  • Sons and Lovers (1913)
  • The Rainbow (1915)
  • Women in Love (1920)
  • The Lost Girl (1920)
  • Aaron's Rod (1922)
  • Kangaroo (1923)
  • The Boy in the Bush (1924)
  • The Plumed Serpent (1926)
  • Lady Chatterley's Lover (1928)
  • The Escaped Cock (1929)
  • The Man Who Died (1929)
  • The Virgin and the Gypsy (1930)
Short stories
  • The Prussian Officer and Other Stories (1914)
  • England, My England and Other Stories (1922)
  • The Fox, The Captain's Doll,The Ladybird (1923)
  • St Mawr and other stories (1925)
  • The Woman who Rode Away and other stories (1928)
  • The Virgin and the Gipsy and Other Stories (1930)
  • Love Among the Haystacks and other stories (1930)
  • Collected Stories (1994)
  • Love Poems and others (1913)
  • Amores (1916)
  • Look! We have come through! (1917)
  • New Poems (1918)
  • Bay: a book of poems (1919)
  • Tortoises (1921)
  • Birds, Beasts and Flowers (1923)
  • The Collected Poems of D H Lawrence (1928)
  • Pansies (1929)
  • Nettles (1930)
  • Last Poems (1932)
  • Fire and other poems (1940)
  • The Complete Poems of D H Lawrence (1964)
  • The Widowing of Mrs Holroyd (1914)
  • Touch and Go (1920)
  • David (1926)
  • The Fight for Barbara (1933)
  • A Collier's Friday Night (1934)
  • The Married Man (1940)
  • The Merry-go-round (1941)
  • The Complete Plays of D H Lawrence (1965)
  • Study of Thomas Hardy and other essays (1914)
  • Movements in European History (1921)
  • Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious and Fantasia of the Unconscious (1921/1922)
  • Studies in Classic American Literature (1923)
  • Reflections on the Death of a Porcupine and other essays (1925)
  • A Propos of Lady Chatterley's Lover (1929)
  • Apocalypse and the writings on Revelation (1931)
  • Phoenix: the posthumous papers of D H Lawrence (1936)
  • Phoenix II: uncollected, unpublished and other prose works by D H Lawrence (1968)
Travel books
  • Twilight in Italy and Other Essays (1916)
  • Sea and Sardinia (1921)
  • Mornings in Mexico (1927)

Did You Know?

  • D. H. Lawrence was the fourth child of the five children of an illiterate coal miner Arthur John Lawrence and his wife Lydia Lawrence, a former school teacher.
  • His mother had to manual work in a lace factory in order to support her financially unstable family.
  • Lawrence’s mother was from a middle class religious family.
  • Lawrence inherited his love for literature from his mother.
  • When he was twenty seven, Lawrence fell in love with Frieda Weekley, the wife of Ernest Weekley, his former professor at Nottingham University. Frieda, who was six years older than Lawrence eloped with him to Germany leaving behind her husband and three children. Before returning back to England the couple travelled to Bavaria, Austria, and Italy.
  • In Germany Lawrence stayed with Frieda’s parents’ home at Metz, where he was eventually arrested and accused of being a British spy. He was then released following an intervention from Frieda's father.
  • Following her divorce from Weekley, Frieda and Lawrence got married at the Kensington's Registrar's Office, in London on 13th July 1914.
  • Although the couple intended to return to Italy in August 1914, the outbreak of the First World War confined them in England.
  • Leaving post-war England they travelled widely, finally settling at the Kiowa Ranch near Taos, New Mexico due to his continued health decline.
  • The Kiowa Ranch is now known as D. H. Lawrence Ranch.
  • After Lawrence’s death in Vence, France in 1930, Frieda returned to Taos to live with her third husband, Angelo Ravagli.
  • Lawrence was originally buried in the old Vence cemetery, but was exhumed in March 1935. His ashes were then handed over to Angelo Ravagli so that they could be transported to the shrine at Kiowa Ranch, New Mexico.
  • There are some speculations that the ashes were dumped by Ravagli somewhere between Marseilles and Villefranche and that he subsequently procured alternative ashes which he eventually took to Taos. Again, another rumor is that that the ashes arrived safely at Kiowa Ranch and Frieda opted to have them added to the concrete of the shrine.
  • Only ten people attended D. H. Lawrence’s funeral, one of the notable mourners was his friend Aldous Huxley.
  • Before falling in love with Frieda, Lawrence proposed to his college friend Louie Burrows. But he ended the engagement soon after he decided to elope with Frieda.
  • Although chiefly venerated as a novelist, Lawrence’s first-published works were poems.
  • D.H. Lawrence's first novel The White Peacock was published in 1910.
  • Lawrence's mother died of cancer shortly after his first novel was published, with Lawrence reported to have given her an overdose of 'sleeping medicine', to end the pain that she was suffering.
  • His quasi-autobiographical novel Sons and Lovers is considered Lawrence’s first great novel which was published in 1913.
  • The Rainbow was published in 1915 but was condemned for its sexual content.
  • His Lady Chatterley's Lover was published in Italy in 1928, but it was banned in the United States until 1958 due to its graphic sexual content. It was banned in England till 1960, until a jury ruled in favor of Penguin Books. Some feminist critics now claim the novel to be deeply misogynistic, because part of its argument is that women will reach true fulfillment only by submitting themselves to men.
  • D.H. Lawrence's birthplace has been transformed into a museum, and has been converted back to how it would have looked when Lawrence was a child.

Photo Gallery

D.H. Lawrence

D.H. Lawrence

D.H. Lawrence

D.H. Lawrence with Frieda Weekley in Chapala, Mexico in 1923


" D.H. Lawrence.” Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 21 June 2016

" DH Lawrence.” The website. 2016. A&E Television Networks. 21 June 2016

" DH Lawrence 1885 - 1930.” Gavin Gillespie. 2014. Gavin Gillespie. 21 June 2016


Saturday, June 18, 2016

Quotations by George Orwell


“Man is the only creature that consumes without producing. He does not give milk, he does not lay eggs, he is too weak to pull the plough, he cannot run fast enough to catch rabbits. Yet he is lord of all the animals. He sets them to work, he gives back to them the bare minimum that will prevent them from starving, and the rest he keeps for himself.”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“All men are enemies. All animals are comrades”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“Four legs good, two legs better! All Animals Are Equal. But Some Animals Are More Equal Than Others.”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face—for ever.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“The only good human being is a dead one.”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“Until they became conscious they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

 “Perhaps one did not want to be loved so much as to be understood.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“Your worst enemy, he reflected, was your nervous system. At any moment the tension inside you was liable to translate itself into some visible symptom.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“I enjoy talking to you. Your mind appeals to me. It resembles my own mind except that you happen to be insane.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“Orthodoxy means not thinking--not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus: 1. What am I trying to say? 2. What words will express it? 3. What image or idiom will make it clearer? 4. Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?”
~ George Orwell, Politics and the English Language

 “He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it.”
~ George Orwell, Shooting an Elephant

“One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“In philosophy, or religion, or ethics, or politics, two and two might make five, but when one was designing a gun or an aeroplane they had to make four.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“This work was strictly voluntary, but any animal who absented himself from it would have his rations reduced by half.”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“Freedom is the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.”
~ George Orwell

 “The essential act of war is destruction, not necessarily of human lives, but of the products of human labour. War is a way of shattering to pieces, or pouring into the stratosphere, or sinking in the depths of the sea, materials which might otherwise be used to make the masses too comfortable, and hence, in the long run, too intelligent.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“If there really is such a thing as turning in one's grave, Shakespeare must get a lot of exercise.”
~ George Orwell, All Art is Propaganda: Critical Essays

“Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else. Not in the individual mind, which can make mistakes, and in any case soon perishes: only in the mind of the Party, which is collective and immortal.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“The smell of her hair, the taste of her mouth, the feeling of her skin seemed to have got inside him, or into the air all round him. She had become a physical necessity.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“He was a lonely ghost uttering a truth that nobody would ever hear.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“The distinguishing mark of man is the hand, the instrument with which he does all his mischief.”
~ George Orwell, Animal Farm

“All writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives there lies a mystery. Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand. For all one knows that demon is simply the same instinct that makes a baby squall for attention. And yet it is also true that one can write nothing readable unless one constantly struggles to efface one's own personality. Good prose is like a windowpane.”
~ George Orwell, Why I Write

“Tragedy, he perceived, belonged to the ancient time, to a time when there were still privacy, love, and friendship, and when the members of a family stood by one another without needing to know the reason.”
~ George Orwell, 1984

“Now I will tell you the answer to my question. It is this. The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power, pure power. What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from the oligarchies of the past in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just around the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal. We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means; it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now you begin to understand me.”
~ George Orwell, 1984


Thursday, June 9, 2016

Quotations by Tennessee Williams


 “What is straight? A line can be straight, or a street, but the human heart, oh, no, it's curved like a road through mountains.”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

“Time doesn't take away from friendship, nor does separation.”
~ Tennessee Williams, Memoirs

“I don't want realism. I want magic! Yes, yes, magic! I try to give that to people. I misrepresent things to them. I don't tell the truth, I tell what ought to be the truth. And it that's sinful, then let me be damned for it!”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

 “There comes a time when you look into the mirror and you realize that what you see is all that you will ever be. And then you accept it. Or you kill yourself. Or you stop looking in mirrors.”
~ Tennessee Williams

“How beautiful it is and how easily it can be broken.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

“Time is the longest distance between two places.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

“The violets in the mountains have broken the rocks.”
~ Tennessee Williams, Camino Real

 “I've got the guts to die. What I want to know is, have you got the guts to live?”
~ Tennessee Williams, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

 “When so many are lonely as seem to be lonely, it would be inexcusably selfish to be lonely alone.”
~ Tennessee Williams, Camino Real

 “Why did I write? Because I found life unsatisfactory.”
~ Tennessee Williams

“Physical beauty is passing - a transitory possession - but beauty of the mind, richness of the spirit, tenderness of the heart - I have all these things - aren't taken away but grow! Increase with the years!”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

“The scene is memory and is therefore nonrealistic. Memory takes a lot of poetic license. It omits some details; others are exaggerated, according to the emotional value of the articles it touches, for memory is seated predominantly in the heart.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 “What is the victory of a cat on a hot tin roof?—I wish I knew... Just staying on it, I guess, as long as she can...”
~ Tennessee Williams, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

 “Oh, you can't describe someone you're in love with!”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

“The rest of my days I'm going to spend on the sea. And when I die, I'm going to die on the sea. You know what I shall die of? I shall die of eating an unwashed grape. One day out on the ocean I will die--with my hand in the hand of some nice looking ship's doctor, a very young one with a small blond moustache and a big silver watch. "Poor lady," they'll say, "The quinine did her no good. That unwashed grape has transported her soul to heaven.”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

 “Being disappointed is one thing and being discouraged is something else. I am disappointed but I am not discouraged.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 “Mendacity is a system that we live in," declares Brick. "Liquor is one way out an'death's the other.”
~ Tennessee Williams, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

 “He was a boy, just a boy, when I was a very young girl. When I was sixteen, I made the discovery - love. All at once and much, much too completely. It was like you suddenly turned a blinding on something that had always been half in shadow, that's how it struck the world for me. But I was unlucky. Deluded.”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

 “Well, honey, a shot never does a coke any harm!”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

“The cities swept about me like dead leaves, leaves that were brightly colored but torn away from the branches. I would have stopped, but I was pursued by something. It always came upon me unawares, taking me altogether by surprise. Perhaps it was a familiar bit of music. Perhaps it was only a piece of transparent glass.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 “You are the only young man that I know of who ignores the fact that the future becomes the present, the present the past, and the past turns into everlasting regret if you don't plan for it.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 “What on earth can you do on this earth but catch at whatever comes near you, with both your fingers, until your fingers are broken?”
~ Tennessee Williams, Orpheus Descending

 “In all these years, you never believed I loved you. And I did. I did so much. I did love you. I even loved your hate and your hardness.”
~ Tennessee Williams, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

 “All pretty girls are a trap, a pretty trap, and men expect them to be.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 “Show me a person who hasn´t known any sorrow and I´ll show you a superficial.”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

 “Everybody is nothing until you love them.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Rose Tattoo

“I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

 “We all live in a house on fire, no fire department to call; no way out, just the upstairs window to look out of while the fire burns the house down with us trapped, locked in it.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore

 “Yes, I have tricks in my pocket, I have things up my sleeve. But I am the opposite of a stage magician. He gives you illusion that has the appearance of truth. I give you truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion.”
~ Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

 “I think that hate is a feeling that can only exist where there is no understanding.”
~ Tennessee Williams, Sweet Bird of Youth

 “Some things are not forgiveable. Deliberate cruelty is not forgiveable. It is the most unforgiveable thing in my opinion, and the one thing in which I have never, ever been guilty.”
~ Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

“America has only three cities: New York, San Francisco, and New Orleans. Everywhere else is Cleveland.”
~ Tennessee Williams


Friday, June 3, 2016

Tennessee Williams Quick Facts

Tennessee Williams

Pulitzer Prize-winning American playwright, noted chiefly for his classic plays such as, A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955) and Sweet Bird of Youth (1959)


  • Full Name: Tennessee Williams
  • Birth Name: Thomas Lanier Williams III
  • Date of Birth: March 26, 1911
  • Place of Birth: Columbus, Mississippi, United States
  • Zodiac Sign: Aries
  • Nationality: American
  • Death: February 25, 1983
  • Place of Death: New York City, New York, United States
  • Epitaph: “The violets in the mountain have broken the rocks.”
  • Cause of Death: Choking
  • Place of Burial: Calvary Cemetery, St. Louis, Missouri, United States
  • Father: Cornelius Coffin Williams (1879-1957)
  • Mother: Edwina Estelle Dakin Williams (1884-1980)
  • Siblings:
1. Sister- Rose Isabel Williams (1909-1996)
2. Brother- Walter Dakin Williams (1919-2008)
  • Partner: Frank Merlo  (1922–1963)
  • Children: None
  • Alma Mater: Soldan High School, University City High School, University of Iowa, University of Missouri
  • Known for: his distinct variety of emotional realism
  • Criticized for: openly addressing taboo topics in his plays
  • Influences: William Shakespeare (1564 –1616), Emily Dickinson (1830 –1886), August Strindberg (1849 –1912), Arthur Rimbaud (1854 –1891), Anton Chekhov (1860 –1904), James Joyce (1882 –1941), D. H. Lawrence (1885 –1930), Eugene O’Neill (1888 –1953), William Faulkner (1897–1962), Hart Crane (1899 –1932), Ernest Hemingway (1899 –1961), Thomas Wolfe (1900 –1938), and William Inge (1913–1973)
  • Influenced: John Waters (1946), David Mamet (1947), Tony Kushner (1956), and Suzan-Lori Parks (1963)


  1. Group Theatre Prize (1939)
  2. Rockefeller Grant (1939)
  3. Sidney Howard Memorial Award, The Glass Menagerie (1945)
  4. Donaldson Award, The Glass Menagerie (1945)
  5. New York Drama Critics' Circle Award, The Glass Menagerie (1945)
  6. New York Drama Critics' Circle Award, A Streetcar Named Desire (1948)
  7. Donaldson Award, A Streetcar Named Desire (1948)
  8. Pulitzer Prize, A Streetcar Named Desire (1948)
  9. Tony Award, The Rose Tattoo (1952)
  10. Pulitzer Prize, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955)
  11. Tony Award, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955)
  12. New York Drama Critics' Circle Award, The Night of the Iguana (1961)
  13. Tony Award, The Night of the Iguana (1961)
  14. Presidential Medal of Freedom (1980)


“What is straight? A line can be straight, or a street, but the human heart, oh, no, it's curved like a road through mountains.” Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire

Major Themes

  • Psychological and Spiritual Displacement
  • Loss of Connections
  • Loneliness
  • Self Deception
  • Retrogression into Sexual Hedonism

Notable Works

  • Cairo, Shanghai, Bombay (1937)
  • Candles to the Sun (1937)
  • The Fugitive Kind (1937)
  • Battle of Angels (1940)
  • The Glass Menagerie (1944)
  • A Streetcar Named Desire (1947)
  • Summer and Smoke (1948)
  • The Rose Tattoo (1951)
  • Camino Real (1953)
  • Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955)
  • Baby Doll (1956, screenplay)
  • Orpheus Descending (1957)
  • Sweet Bird of Youth (1959)
  • Period of Adjustment (1960)
  • The Night of the Iguana (1961)
  • The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore (1963)
  • The Seven Descents of Myrtle (1968)
  • Out Cry (1973)
  • The Eccentricities of a Nightingale (1976)
  • Vieux Carré (1977)
  • Clothes for a Summer Hotel (1980)

Did You Know?

  • Tennessee Williams was the second child of Cornelius Coffin Williams and Edwina Estelle Dakin Williams.
  • His father was an alcoholic travelling shoe salesman.
  • In the year 1939 Williams started using the name Tennessee Williams instead of his given name.
  • Throughout his life Williams remained close to his sister Rose who was diagnosed with schizophrenia as a young woman.
  • During her teenage Rose foolishly fell in love with a boy, to whom Williams was attracted as well.
  • His unfavourable childhood and personal experience provided much idea for his theme and character development.
  • Williams was an alcoholic and often sought comfort in pills.
  • Before accepting homosexuality Williams made several attempts to form relationship with women.
  • Soon after A Streetcar Named Desire (1947) opened, Williams lost his confidence in writing and travelled Europe to recover from his loss. During this unproductive period he heavily relied upon alcohol, pills and casual gay sex.
  • Having returned from Europe he re-encountered Frank Merlo, a truck driver, who he met one year back. Later on, the pair fell in love and Merlo moved in with Williams. Merlo cleaned the apartment, cooked all the meals, acted as chauffeur and managed correspondence. Merlo gradually detached Williams from dependence on alcohol, casual sex and pills. As a result, Williams once again found the peace of mind to concentrate in writing.
  • Since Williams couldn’t keep himself aloof from sex and alcoholism, cracks began to develop in their enduring relationship. Consequently, Merlo and Williams separated briefly in 1961 and again in 1962.
  • Shortly after their breakup, Merlo was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer and Williams returned to take care of him until his death.
  • Grief-stricken by Merlo’s demise, William fell into a seven-year period of depression, promiscuous sex, alcohol abuse and drug use. Consequently, his subsequent plays became mediocre and were not even close to the quality of his earlier works. In 1969, he had a nervous breakdown and his brother Dakin had him committed to a mental hospital in St. Louis, where Williams stayed for three months.
  • In 1975 Williams published Memoirs, in which he wrote candidly about his addictions, family crises, and homosexuality.
  • Tennessee Williams was the first American playwright to frankly incorporate the idea of homosexuality in plays when none could even dare to imagine it.


Tennessee Williams

Tennessee Williams


" Tennessee Williams.” Shmoop. 2016. Shmoop University Inc. 20 May 2016

" Tennessee Williams.” Wikipedia. 2016. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 20 May 2016



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