Wednesday, April 13, 2016

LLLiterary Devices in Ray Bradbury's "The Veldt" { A to Z Blogging Challenge }

A happy house of horror??
If you don't think of  Bradbury when you hear that, 
you haven't read Bradbury recently enough...!!
Well, how about  breaking out our copies of 
Fahrenheit 451 , Dandelion Wine and
 The Martian Chronicles for a
study of one of the most underrated, under-appreciated,
under-celebrated   authors of our time.
One of my favorite short stories penned by Bradbury,
who called himself a metaphor machine, 
(and how seriously cool is that?) is "The Veldt." 
can't take credit for that 'horror  house' representation  by the way.
 One of my undergrad  English profs labelled the Hadleys' home
in that manner and wow is it fitting.
{ Even more amazing is me reaching back into 
1986 for that little literary memory! }
In our home school this week, we've been delving deeply
into the craft of one of America's premiere sci fi authors and 
I thought I'd share our findings....
how perfect, too, that today is "L" in the A to Z Blogging Challenge and to me
L  is for"Literary Devices!"

SO here are some resources and tips that have helped aid us 
in our Bradbury author study, specifically
the analysis of "The Veldt."

Since my kids were small, we've been reading.
Reading, reading, reading and discussing.
When we began homeschooling, I kind of felt that with the reading 
should be "more," you know?
I should have some sort of worksheets, workbooks, book reports, etc.
That was the teacher in me.
In our twelve years of home educating, believe me,
 I've tried many many different approaches.
Some, with success. Others with frustrating results.
Then, I learned to trust my own instincts.

Bottom line: 
Here's how to kill a child's love of literature and learning.
Assign a book report.
Or fill -  in  - the  - blank sheets on a particular story.
Blech.
I taught for many years as an elementary teacher
 and as a  reading disabilities specialist
and in those years, I was a slave to what the district dictated.
Well, sort of. I got away with what I could get away with.
Didn't make me too popular with administration.
But it grew hundreds of kids, now in their 20s and early 30s who 
are readers, writers, questioners and debaters.

And all I did was open a book.
Many of them.
Only requirement? Your imagination.

With my own family's education, I  made the decision 
to love literature for its own sake.
How'd it go?
Simply put, my own kids  are avid readers and writers, 
constantly ( and sometimes, annoyingly )
quoting literature from ancient tomes to current best sellers.

I guess it worked!

So....I don't any resources that correspond in a worksheet-ish
way to  Bradbury's works.
But  here are some resources and tips that have helped aid us 
in our Bradbury author study, specifically
the analysis of "The Veldt."

Our "favorite lines" books~ 
A term my kids coined when l-o-v-e-d the way an author expressed
something powerful, beautiful or unique.
Through the years, we've tabbed the binder with labels of
literary devices. 
There are sections for everything from metaphors to
similes to onomatopoeia to hyperbole and on and on......
We've used simple marble notebooks...
We've used these



Anything goes, as long as you simply want to a record
of the beautiful language you read and enjoy through the years.
That works for us!

Now let's take a look at some of the "favorite lines,"
the beautiful language and the specific literary devices
Bradbury employs ------
specifically in "The Veldt." 




"The Veldt" was written in 1950 and features the Hadley family.
The Hadley's dream home of the story’s futuristic world has,
 its most elaborate feature,
a nursery, which can reproduce any scene
 in complete aural, visual, or olfactory detail
 in response to the occupants’ thought waves. 
The children,  Wendy and Peter, 
( coincidence or borrowed from JM Barrie? ) 
have used the nursery to conjure
 such fantasies as Oz and Wonderland,  but lately  they've used it 
to recreate an African veldt. 
Upon investigating the nursery,  Mr and Mrs Hadley
are frightened by certain images, mainly those of charging lions...
So much so that they lock the nursery.
Now, telling you any more than that?
Spoilers.
You can finish it yourself here! Enjoy.

We lost Ray Bradbury in 2012 at the age of 91.
Interesting, this.... one more thing that struck me as I read the story <again>~~ 
Is there meaning in this room being called a nursery
A nursery, a place where children are taken care
 of by their parents or other trusted adults.
So, who's in charge?
A computer.
Hmmmmm

What do you think?
Was he a visionary in writing The Veldt 66 years ago?

Now, for the use of literary devices~

Metaphor~
The nursery "caught the telepathic emanationsof the children and "created life to fill their every desire."

As the Hadleys  enter the nursery, they  "stepped into Africa ... this bake-oven with murder in the heart." 


If you've not finished the story, SKIP THIS LINE because  it is perhaps Bradbury's ultimate
metaphor wherein Wendy offers McClean tea, symbolic of civility, amid the permanent African nursery, displaying their  slaughtered parents.


Simile 


When the children arrived home from a carnival, they were sporting "cheeks like peppermint candy, eyes like bright blue agate marbles."


After Mr Hadley turned off the nursery, he described the house in this way: 

"It felt like a mechanical cemetery."









Foreshadowing~

 Bradbury uses this writing technique to hint at the fate of George and Lydia Hadley. When 

they hear screams coming from the nursery Lydia comments, "Those screams-they sound familiar." Hmmmmm~~~ 




We lost Ray Bradbury in 2012 at the age of 91.
Interesting, this.... one more thing that struck me as I read the story <again>~~ 
Is there meaning in this room being called a nursery
A nursery, a place where children are taken care
 of by their parents or other trusted adults.
So, who's in charge?
A computer.

Hmmmmm

What do you think?
Was he a visionary in writing The Veldt 66 years ago?



Day 12 ~ L,  of the A to Z Challenge!
I'm writing off a picture/s or a thought/s for the month.....
Now real "theme," just a stream of consciousness.
Please visit tomorrow for M, day 13 !





 Friends, as always,  
thank you for stopping over and 
spending some of your precious time 
here at my home on the web!

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just enter your email address here
so we can be in touch regularly!

Enter your email address:


  
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....

Until next time,

~Chris




This post contains my amazon affiliate link, 
which means if you click to amazon through my blog
 and make a purchase, 
I will receive, at no cost to you, a tiny percentage of the sale price.
So, thank you!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.. .....
I LOVE YOUR COMMENTS!!
I will reply right here in the combox; so please check back if you'd like to continue the conversation.

Unfortunately, I've had to reactivate comment moderation due to frequent spam. So sorry you have to deal with this inconvenience.

If you'd like, you can contact me instead via email ~
campfiresandcleatsATgmail DOT com.