What Causes Inflation?

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Inflation has many causes according to the experts. Although experts can’t agree completely on what the exact causes of inflation really are, most of them agree that inflation is due to either quality and/or quantity. The quality theory of inflation says that a person who earns money will be able to use that money to buy the good he wants. The quantity theory of inflation says that money should be viewed in how much of it is supplied and exchanged.

The three most common forms of inflation are demand pull inflation, cost push inflation, and built in inflation. Demand pull inflation is a result of low unemployment rates and an increased consumer demand for items. Cost push inflation happens when something that people use a lot becomes harder to get. For instance when oil is hard to get gas prices go up. Built-in inflation means that as the price of items increases, people try to increase the amount that they earn to keep up with the price of goods.

As a result of the increase in wages the employers pass along their own higher costs to the employees making it a no win situation. Some experts say that it is the amount of money that is in circulation that causes inflation by lowering the value of the money in general. Sometimes the result of having too much money in the economy can lead to such disasters as prices doubling in a short period of time. This is called hyper inflation and it usually happens during a war when a government might try to finance their own spending by printing more and more money. Another reason there might be too much money in the economy is when people stop spending money unexpectedly and drastically like what happened during the time of the black plague in Europe. Other experts insist that inflation and unemployment cannot ever be low at the same time. If unemployment is high inflation is low. And if inflation is high, unemployment is low. Therefore, some level of unemployment must be sacrificed in order to keep inflation down.

Still other experts believe that it is normal for the economy to be effected by inflation. This theory is shown by the Phillips curve which allows inflation to cycle up and down according to the shift between unemployment and inflation. Another theory of inflation uses the gross domestic product to measure the effects of inflation on the economy. This theory uses what is called potential output. This means that the state of the economy is measured against what is determined to be the best level of production for the nation. If the gross domestic product is higher than it should be and if unemployment is lower than it should be the result is that the rate of inflation will increase because suppliers will raise their prices and built in inflation will get worse.

On the other hand if the gross domestic product is lower than it should be and if unemployment is higher than it should be inflation will decrease because suppliers will not have enough goods and will have to lower their prices in order to bypass built in inflation. The biggest problem with this theory is that there is no way to really determine what the exact potential output should be and that whatever it is it probably changes a lot. Inflation causes a number of problems. People who live on limited incomes like those who are retired are going to have trouble making ends meet. The increase in inflation may cause worker’s unions to bargain for higher wages which can cause a wage spiral or the no win situation described above. And if a union goes on strike because they want higher wages there may not be enough products produced to meet the needs of the economy. And the difference between countries in regards to inflation may mean that items that are produced in one country may be too expensive for people in another country to buy.

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Source by Rebecca Stigall

Secrets of a Savvy Bridesmaid: 5 Must-Do Steps to Creating the Ultimate Hens Night!

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Welcome to advice from a fellow Savvy Bridesmaid who has made limitless mistakes, planned everything from bride’s brunch to burlesque classes, designed countless Hens Nights & managed to maintain her manicure and her sanity in the process. Take these tips with love from a woman who has walked in those peep-toe high heeled shoes before. If you are after honest, exciting and sometimes quirky advice, then grab your martini glass and come with me…

Not so long ago, I was given the honour of being elected chief bridesmaid by one of my best friends. I use the term ‘honour’ loosely. Now, don’t get me wrong – I adore my friend and being invited to be part of the celebration was a fabulous gesture, and it’s not that I don’t want to make her wedding experience as fabulous as possible, it’s just…well, all that Hens Night expectation was driving me up the head-over-heels crazy. Add to this the fact that the bride-to-be had requested the Hens Night experience be kept a secret. No pressure or anything…

Fast-forward a few months and I had just finalised the arrangements for the traditional pub crawl & fireman’s pole routine. That afternoon, the bride-to-be’s grandmother called me and asked if some crystal-frosted champagne glasses would be an appropriate gift to bring along on the day? I froze in panic. I was minutes away from Hens Night disaster and only just managed to avoid a total debacle- a debacle that surely would have seen the bride and her nana in tears, and myself being promptly fired from the job. It was time for action! If only I knew then what I knew now…

Disaster Avoider 1: Keep the Bride-to-be in the loop

No matter how much your Bride insists that the Hens Night should ‘definitely be a surprise,’ whatever you do, don’t concur. An expert Bridesmaid knows how to read between the lines. What your Bride is actually saying is ‘Keep me updated on everything except the colour of the napkins.’ Yes – the napkins are the only surprises that come into play here.

Disaster Avoider 2: Unleash your Inner-Journalist

It’s time to get the clipboard out ladies. The next step to Hens Night bliss is to interview the bride. Whilst you probably have a reasonable idea of what sort of Hens-do your Bride has been dreaming of, you can never be too sure. Ask her to describe her exact vision – and just as she is rambling on about tinted crme candle holders, pull her back to reality. Fire questions like a game show host. Don’t forget the classics, such as the ‘How many people will be attending?’ enquiry, the ‘Does this need to be a Nana safe event?’ ultimatum and ‘Exactly what do you mean by Fireman’s Pole?’ questions. Specifics are your new best friend. How many times have we heard that Hens Night horror-story where the bride has hinted she would love an ‘afternoon Tupperware party’ only to be perceived by the Bridesmaid as a ‘nudge nudge, wink wink’ statement, prompting her to organise a ‘Tupperware party’ of the more fluffy & vibrating type. In this scenario the bridesmaid only realises her mistake when Aunty Shirley turns up on the day, wearing her Sunday best and expecting to by some new muffin tins. Please girls, please avoid an Aunty Shirley situation at all costs.

Disaster Avoider 3: Confirm, Confirm, Confirm

‘Confirm’ is your new mantra. A not-so-savvy bridesmaid may ask ‘What’s to confirm, I’ve already booked the cupcake making class.’ Big mistake. Just a few of the things that you will need to confirm right from the get-go are your outfit for the night, guest numbers, food allergies, transport home, how everyone will pay, making sure that guests bring appropriate footwear (you can’t go skydiving in heels), the Hens Gift, the thank you gifts, the timing of the day, the suppliers arrangements. Obviously in that order, I mean everyone knows the main job of a bridesmaid is to look fabulous.

Disaster Avoider 4: Become your own Monopoly Banker

Remember when you where eleven and finally had the chance to be the banker in your family game of Monopoly? Well this is the same thing, but for grown-ups. It’s time to summon that savvy money chic within you and get this Hens Night financed. Again, we’ve all heard to Hens Night horror-story: The bridesmaid plans a truly gorgeous Hens Night with a pamper party followed by a stretch limo. Everyone agrees that the $79 is a bargain. The bridesmaid lets everyone know to bring cash on the night and pre-pays for the whole thing on here credit card – for all twenty guests. Can you see how this situation is looking more-and-more like a scene from one of those ‘seconds from disaster’ shows on telly? Come the big night and all she hears is claims of ‘Don’t worry babe, here is an IOU I wrote on the back of a supermarket receipt’ and ‘Well, I don’t have the cash this week – do you take visa?’ or the inevitable ‘I thought Bridget paid for me?’ conversation. Not only does said bridesmaid spend the whole night stressing about money – so much so that she doesn’t even enjoy the champers – she also realises that the $1500+ she has just put on her credit card is being charged at 7%. Disaster. Hens Night Organiser 101: Get the goods before the event takes place. Some hens party companies (ala My Ultimate Hens) allow each guest to pay for her portion of the event separately – meaning you don’t have the responsibility of taking and organising payments, and the guests have the luxury of paying by Bpay or Credit Card. It’s a win win. The more smiles on the Hens Night equals a smoother event all round. Because, let’s face it, IOU’s never hold up in court.

Disaster Avoider 5: Follow your heart

Okay, I know it sounds cheesy to say ‘follow your heart,’ but i just can’t bring myself to write ‘follow your gut’ – it just sounds so wrong. The point is, at the end of the day you are going to be a paying guest at this event too. If your bride insists on having strippers and shots, where you really imagined a champagne sunset sailing cruise with canaps – meet in the middle. Get the specifics from the brides request, mould them around your ideals and present the bride with portfolio of options. A meet-in-the-middle solution could be to do a burlesque dance class followed by a cocktail cruise, or a winery tour and limo cruise. Most of all, let the bride know how important it is to you that she has a Hens Night that is ‘not just another night at the pub’ and that you intend to pull-off the most memorable, unique and just plain fabulous Hens Night ever. She will be putty in your manicured hands.

So there you have it. Whoever said being a Bridesmaid was an easy job has obviously never planned a Hens Night. The best advice I can give it to throw caution to the wind, what in between being a banker, journalist, baby sitter, debt collector, best friend, event manager and mediator, there needs to be some room for fun as well. And above all, remember that when you are sitting with your feet up, sipping a glass of bubbly and looking at the photo on the mantelpiece of you and the girls battling it out in paint ball, or clinking martini glasses in the back of a limo, that it will all be worth it.

Speaking of bubbly…my champagne ice bucket has just chilled. Savvy Bridesmaid over & out!

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Source by Nyree Stevens

Emily Bronte, the Writer of Wuthering Heights and Possible Asperger’s Syndrome

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Charlotte Bronte called her sister, Emily Bronte, ‘an unconscious genius who did not know what she had done,’ referring to the single novel, Wuthering Heights.

What little we know about Emily Bronte comes down to us mostly through her sister, Charlotte, the writer of Jane Eyre. Despite the lack of information, Emily is a fascinating person. Her reclusive life style and inability to interact socially leaves us with a mysterious, incomplete portrait of the Victorian writer who gave us Wuthering Heights, a classic of English literature.

Emily’s forays int public were met with disappointment and failure due to her difficulties with social interaction. During her childhood, her father sent her to boarding school, where homesickness drove her into bouts with anorexia until she reached such weakened states, she was sent home to the Parsonage at Haworth in Yorkshire, England.

At home, Emily was happy. she applied herself rigorously to domestic routine around the parsonage and in the kitchen. She appears to have been a forceful influence behind the scenes and was the only one of her sisters capable of controlling her alcoholic and drug addicted brother, Branwell.

All four Bronte siblings (Charlotte, Branwell, Emily, and Anne) spent a large part of their childhood engrossed in fantasy play, creating their own kingdom called Angria. As Emily perceived that Charlotte and Branwell had too much control over the game, she and her sister Anne split off to crate another kingdom called Gondal. Moving into adulthood did not discourage Emily’s interest in the fantasy world. She worked on the saga, complete with character lists, newspaper reports, complicated political and romantic situations, and poetry about it all until her death at age 30. Little is left of her life work except for a few poems.

The original, unusual and complicated plot of her novel, Wuthering Heights, incurred unfavorable contemporary reviews. Her work was seen as unnatural and morbid, due to the novel’s dark themes of familial dysfunction, desire, and revenge. It was not until years after her death that Wuthering Heights was welcomed as a literary classic.

Emily Bronte’s reclusiveness, her apparent rudeness, anorexia, and dedication to routine suggests that she may have had Asperger’s syndrome, a condition of the autism spectrum not identified until 1944 by Hans Asperger.

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Source by Inez Calender

Qualities of Good Advertisement Copy

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Advertising is one of the major factors for the success of any company. The success of advertising depends very much upon the copy of advertisement. The aim of the advertisement is to attract the customer and create an urge in his mind to have that product and if the advertisement does not fulfill this objective, the expenditure done on advertising is quite useless.

While preparing the advertisement copy the person in charge should be imaginative enough to think of words and patterns which would produce desired effect on the prospect. The good advertisement copy should possess some of characteristics like:

Awareness value: The advertisement should bring the awareness for the product or services. It should attract the attention of the readers. 

Problem-solving: After creating the awareness for the product, next step should be problem solving, the advertisement should provide the information regarding the use and the utility of the product that may remain in the minds of customers

Recall value: The advertisement should be so effective, that the product should stick to the memory of the customers.

Sincerity: An advertisement must gain the confidence of the customers, the advertising should avoid bold claims and the product should deliver the results as per claims made by the company. Advertising is introduction. Quality is retention.

Enlightening: A good advertisement copy should educate the general public about uses of the products. It should possess the educative value.

Instinctive value: A good advertisement must possess natural value so that customers are induced, persuaded and motivated to think well of a product and take to its use. To increase the effectiveness of the advertisement, the above qualities should be incorporated to make it a best advertisement.

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Source by Virendra Ligade

The Deer Hunting Benoit Family and Me

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I have no recollection of how I got to be friends with Larry Benoit. I was in my late teens and Larry was old enough to be my father. When father died I was only twelve and Larry's reputation as a great deer hunter certainly was one thing I thought could help fill a great void.

Some very strong ties

My father left the same hunting legacy that Larry now had and there was even something of a physical resemblance. Without doubt I saw Larry as a surrogate father figure in a younger version.

Number two in sequence of birth and old son of nine children, Lanny is five months younger than I. We become close friends ostensibly giving Larry two sons to run around and party with and that that just what we did, for years.

How the legend started

Living in our area was a freelance writer named Peter Miller. Shame on me for not remembering to which outdoor sporting magazine Peter contributed his bio-documentary on Larry. Life for the deer hunting Benoits would never be the same again.

WDEV is the local radio station in Waterbury, VT., And it is owned by Ken Squire. At that time Ken was broadcasting many of the NASCAR races for CBS, and it was no problem getting a film crew to shoot a segment on Larry.

Peter subsequently followed up with two additional articles and conjoining the three became a book. It was transitory to prodigious notoriety in Larry's Realm. When hunting season was nigh his house was standing room only.

He did not ask for all this

Inordinate numbers of hunters from out of state, some of them celebrity seekers, some fantasizing Larry would dissolve where to go and how to "do" it, and others with the consummate delusion of actually being able to hunt with Larry beloved into the Benoit household .

Someone being my best friend suddenly overwhelmed by good fortune was exciting for me in the sense I was happy for him. At the same time I did not feel awe stuck because after all, it is my best friend, Larry. I had known him for a long time by then.

Here's Lanny

As a consequence of the exposure and rumors of being a better hunter than his dad, plus previous and ongoing success in Drag Racing (Another life with the Benoit Family) Lanny was as popular and thought after as his father. It was a fabulous time for me just looking on.

Let's go hunting

I do not remember the year, only that I was still in my twenties when I decided if I was going to deer hunt it was not going to be with my best friends.

I did not shoot a deer that year, but I supplied major muscle dragging out a 145 buck, mother Benoit's (Ikie), a 193 pound brute, Lanny's, and a 225 monster, Larry's. All on bare ground; if you've never had the displeasure let me tell you, it is tantamount to pulling a box car that has no wheels.

The young ones carry on

The last I knew the Benoit clan rarely hunts in Vermont any more. They are mostly in Maine where the White Tails are bigger and hunters are fewer per square mile.

When I reached my late forties Lane and Shane, the last two sons, numbers seven and eight of the Benoit nine had been hunting for several years. At another lost moment in time of my recall Lane shot an incredibly huge 284 pound buck somewhere in Maine.

284 pounds, I never would have lived to write this story.

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Source by Stephen Phillips Anderson

Using the Five-Paragraph Rule For Writing a Research Brief

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When presenting a research, whether as a thick, detailed report or on a live conference, the research brief is a necessary document to give the audience a taste of what they can expect. And the classic five-paragraph format is an excellent way to present it.

Paragraph 1: Introduction. In the first paragraph, your goal should be to list down the problem, explain why it is a challenge and provide the solution. Additionally, you will need to tell the reader why it should be relevant to them, boiling down your contributions to its bare essential

Paragraph 2: Background. Here, you elaborate on the challenges of the subject, briefly examining prior work and hinting at a couple of issues in them that you work is able to address.

Paragraph 3: Transition. In the transition to your actual research, you can give the reader what special insight or process you applied in overcoming the limitations of previous work.

Paragraph 4: Details. Here, you give a brief explanation of the actual research, stating the technical challenges you encountered, along with the different things you did to validate your output.

Paragraph 5: Assessment. To close the brief, assess your results and share the conclusions that your results manage to support. Keep it succinct, touching on the more interesting ones and leaving the rest for later.

As always, you want to print a final version of the research brief with as much polish and clarity as can be provided by a formal writing software. So make sure you give it a pass.

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Source by Jane Sumerset

Laminate Flooring ‘How To’ – Scribing Your First Row

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Typically laminate flooring instructions will advise you to start laying your laminate along a straight wall-but what if you don’t have the luxury of a straight beginning wall? What do you do then? Fold and call in the professionals or hang in there, tough it out and increase your knowledge and sense of accomplishment?

If you choose the latter, scribing the first row is actually fairly simple. You’ll need a protractor—remember those funny hinged things you used in math class way back when? And you’ll need a jig saw to cut the laminate to the shape of the starting wall.

Begin by assembling the laminate row end-to-end and line it up against the crooked starting wall. Make sure the tongue side of the row length is facing the wall and leave enough room for the expansion gap which should be anywhere from ¼” to ½”. (You can allow about an eighth of an inch for the tongue).

The expansion gap is the space you’ll need between the laminate and the wall on all sides to allow for the natural expansion and contraction of the floating floor due to changes in temperature and humidity through out the year. If you don’t leave a proper gap, your finished floor will buckle.

To recap, you’ve laid out your first row and lined it up against the starting wall with enough space for the expansion gap. Now take your protractor and set the width at the widest point from the wall to the straight row of laminate. Run the protractor along the length of the wall, marking the laminate row on the tongue side with the attached pencil. The pencil marks indicate how you’ll cut the laminate pieces to match the wall.

Disassemble the laminate row and cut each piece with a jig saw following the pencil marks on the tongue side. Be sure to reassemble the row in the same order, and lay it out, again leaving space for the expansion gap. Your starting row now matches the crooked starting wall, while the groove side presents a straight line from which to lay the rest of the floor.

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Source by Marion Taylor

Blending The Traditional With The Modern In John Pepper Clark’s Plays

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In his very life Clark exemplifies this uneasy fusion of the traditional and the modern. In introducing his volume of poems A REED IN THE TIDE he considers himself as:

…….. that fashionable cultural phenomenon they call ‘mulatto’ – not in flesh but in mind! Coming of an ancient multiple stock in the Niger Delta area of Nigeria from which I have never quite felt myself severed, and going through the usual educational mill with the regular grind of English school at its end, I sometimes wonder what in my make-up is ‘traditional’ and ‘native’ and what ‘derived’ and ‘modern’.

J.P. Clark embodies in his work a wide range of influences from ancient and modern western sources to the myths and legends of his Ijaw people. Although he writes in English in order to reach the widest possible audience, African images, themes, settings and speech patterns are at the center of his work.

Born in 1935 in Nigeria, Clark along with Wole Soyinka is one of Nigeria’s foremost dramatists and poets. His interest in poetry started while he was studying at university College in Ibadan. There he also co-edited THE HORN, an undergraduate magazine publishing poems, reviews and articles by young African writers. In 1964 he published his scurrilous work on American society AMERICA THEIR AMERICA based on his experiences whilst studying at Princeton University. He worked briefly at the Daily Express and co-edited BLACK ORPHEUS with Abiola Irele. He has written several volumes of poems and plays and produced two documentary films The OZIDI OF ALONZI and The GHOST TOWN. He has since 1968 been teaching African Literature and English at the University of Lagos and is the director of the Repertory Theatre there.

The traditional and the modern are almost always blended in Clark’s plays in themes, attitudes and techniques as they are in some of Soyinka’s early plays. His first two plays SONG OF a GOAT [performed in 1961] and The MASQUERADE [performed in 1965] contain elements of classical Greek and Shakespearean drama, the poetic plays of T. S. Elliot and the folk literature of the Ijaw people which Clark says has much in common with classical drama. In SONG OF A GOAT a barren woman consults with a masseur and conceives a child by her husband’s brother. Unable to accept this situation, both the husband and his brother commit suicide. The child, grown to manhood and unaware of the circumstances of his birth, is the tragic hero of THE MASQUERADE. He travels away from his native village and engages a beautiful, strong-willed girl. When the young man’s background is revealed the girl’s father forbids her from marrying him, but she refuses to abide by his decision. In the violent denouement all of them die. Both plays are written in verse and share a relentless aura of doom, with neighbours functioning as chorus commenting on the tragic happenings.

A SONG OF A GOAT demonstrates well how the two elements – the modern and the traditional – coalesce or conflict. But the whole social situation of the play is essentially traditional. . The attitude of the characters therefore keep strictly in line with the social ethos of the world created within the play. These are ethos and traditions sanctioned by the gods themselves. Those who pit themselves against it are seen as rebelling against the customs sanctioned by the society and the gods themselves. Therefore as a result of resisting those customs. Zifa has an ill-fated battle to overturn the curse inflicted on him.

The play also shows the high premium the society places on the reproductive act. It is to them the most sacred duty of life. Anyone who fails to fill up his house with children is deemed as being guilty of a very serious omission, which could portend danger as the masseur explains here:

An empty house, my daughter, is a thing Of danger. If men will not live in it Bats or grass will, and that is enough Signal for worse things to come in.

So important is this act of fecundity that everything else becomes subordinated and functional to it. For as the Masseur states:

You buy your wife the truest Madras, beat for her the best gold and Anyone can see she is very well fed But we fatten our maidens to prepare for fruition, Not to thwart them.

Significantly, the masseur hints that not to facilitate it is to impede it. For tradition holds that those who have not produced are as good as dead. Therefore:

…custom dictates those who die childless Be cast out of the company of the fruitful whose Special grace is interment in the township.

Zifa who has been cursed with infertility because of the sins of his father, refuses to adhere to the traditional curstom of giving his wife over to someone virile enough to make her bear fruits and by so doing confirm her existence. She thus pits herself against a strong traditional force which could be almost impossible to battle against. The ill-advised nature of his quarrel against tradition embodied in the oracular masseur – is shown in his rash statement: ‘I am strong and /Alive and dare you open your filthy/mouth to suggest I pawn my land?’ His very words repudiate the age-old belief that not to create is not to live and exposes the ill-fatedness of his struggle. The impending doom is underlined by the masseur’s reply:

You are eaten up with anger but although You crush me, a cripple, between your strong Hands it will not solve your problem.

And what he suggests, the masseur goes on, has been of a long-standing tradition, our father did not forbid even in days/of old.’

Zifa’s battle against tradition is principally through questioning the legitimacy of the curse placed on him by cosmic forces. Here he is in direct combat with the gods whom he regards as thwarting his efforts to fulfill his marital responsibilities.. Even through his father who had angered the gods had died and had been buried in the evil grove, as customs dictates, and he has done his duties as a son by making sacrifices, the curse is still extended to him when ‘they dared not spit at his father when he was alive.’ In a fit of despair, he asks: ‘And am I to blame/If all was fish that come to his net? But the masseur quietly hints that perhaps his fault was in bringing him back home among his people a bit too early for one who died of the white taint. But Zifa is not to be persuaded. He sees it as an unjust punishment which he describes as picking his flesh ‘To the bones like fish a floating corpse’.

Ironically, Tonye, Zifa’s brother and Zifa’s wife, Ebiere, in their effort to effect the procreative act Zifa has failed to perform also put themselves in the way of tradition. They are thus threatened with doom. Their fate comes from their omission – not seeking the sanction of tradition and thus inviting the cleavages climaxing the play. Significantly in the heat of the act – with Ebiere and Tonye interlocked – cock crows ominously and this immediately rouses the all-seeing Orukorere. The unnaturalness of the act and their unacceptance of tradition is shown in her words:

I have seen a sight this dusk to make The eagle blind. I heard the cock crow As I woke up from sleep. That was sign Of omen enough but little did I know It was this great betrayal of our race.

The futility of the struggle against tradition, and its self-destructive outcomes was being hinted at from the very start of the play. The first comes from the masseur who has been a prophetic voice of insight in the play. He warns:

….you yourself saw even now how the hen All but blew down the house with the flutter Of her wings. With the cock himself, the walls May well give in and I am too old To start raising green thatch for my grey hair.

Though Orukorere, another prophet-like figure, has been hinting at danger from the play’s very start, it is only towards the end that his message becomes clear. Then she pronounces

There will never be light again in this House, child, this is the night of our race, The fall of all that ever reared up head Or crest.

This fall seems as that of Adam and Eve of cosmic dimension affecting the fate of all men. She concludes: ‘Recognition therefore’s become a thing/for houseflies and bats, has it? The destruction of Zifa, Tonye and Ebiere shows the fate awaiting those who rebel against tradition and defy the gods.

The curse placed on Tonye and Ebiere extends to the product of their incestuous act, Tufa, in the next play THE MASQUERADE. Tufa himself recounts:

I am that unmentionable beast Born of woman to brother and for whom brother Drove brother to terrible death. That’s not All. My mother who they say engendered The seed, on expulsion of it, withered In the act, and it was left an old woman Without wit to pick me up and take Into another country [ p86 THREE PLAYS]

Evidently then such a curse has doomed his love for Titi as it has his life… Here, Titi defies tradition to woo a man who is cursed. She defies her father’s offer to dissolve the marriage with ‘a haphazard choice’ in favour of the choicest man in all the creeks and the virgin paths on land and sea. She scoffed that she wouldn’t ‘be put/On a platter for hawking’.

However, the conflict is not that simple, for the marriage had already been bound and blessed by Titi’s father, Diribi. He thus transforms himself into an accomplice in the sacrilegious act though unwittingly. The dissolution of the marriage cannot then come simply by proclamation from only father and mother. For they had only then discovered the man’s ugly past. It is thus a conglomeration of ironies that in their fight against tradition, both TitI and Tufa resort to tradition – the marriage having been tied and blessed to justify their stance. The father, in turn, in a bid to uphold tradition and fight against a curse that could come over his family, battles against tradition itself, and brings himself a curse of wider ramifications. Ironically enough it is the gift that Tufa presented Diribi on the occasion of his marriage that became the instrument of his undoing and his wife’s death. As a result, that whole force face certain doom as with Umoko who lost her wits.

Admittedly, such a pervasive traditional setting brings in modernistic attitudes or forces which contest with the forces of tradition in both plays. A SONG OF A GOAT and THE MASQUERADE reveal free-wheeling women in quest for female independence in Ebierre and Titi. In her battle of words with Tonye she gives the appearance of one who would omit nothing in her fight to prove that her sex cannot be a reason for being put in the wrong all the time. She says:

Of course, it is the woman who is in the wrong Always I who have suffered neglect and Gathered mould like a thing of sacrifice Left out in sun and rain at the cross-roads You talk to me of my short temper; what Short temper have I, when it is pulled and Tugged at daily like a hook-line?

Titi, on the other hand is not only a woman but a young girl striving to assert to the older folks her right to choose the man she wants to be married to and not to be ‘put on sale/like fish or fowl rejected by the meanest/Household’.

Both plays have been largely well received and their favourable evaluation is mainly for their mostly first rate artistry and sophistication. For Anthon Astrachan, ‘At his weakest, he is more competent than many dramatists more widely known outside Africa; at his strongest, he is magnificent. His THREE PLAYS can compete as equals on the stage of world literature without losing a cowries worth of their African qualities.’ He goes on to compare both plays of this first rate dramatist to Sophocles’ Oedipus plays, as does another critic, John Fergusson. ‘The language and feeling of both are so rich in action that the reader is compelled to stage them in the theatre of his interior vision, and not having seen them become less of a handicap’. Going on to analyzing the language of SONG OF A GOAT he states thus:

The language evokes the pity and terror which are the prime aims of tragedy, and the dramatic construction has an aura of doom….. Orukorere evokes the terror of the offence that is still to come. In her half-crazed nightmare:

I must find her, the leopard That will devour my goat, I must Find him.

John Ferguson describing it as a powerful play also joins Astrachan in acknowledging how hugely indebted Clark is to Greek drama without being imitative or derivative. It recalls the curse of Laius or Atreus and their working out in OEDIPUS and AGAMENNON. The masseur is the equivalence of the divine figure that normally begins or ends Greek plays. The neighbours form the chorus, though Clark does not link his movements with song and dance sequences. The movements are taut, and the characters economical in number and conception. Like Greek drama the play is religious in tone. Some of the devices and approaches of Greek drama .are used with great skill. The concept of the Messenger’s speech is beautifully adapted to describe Zifa’s self-immolation in the sea. The most moving elements of Aristotelian tragedy – peripeteia and anagnorisis – are all evident in this play.

Astrachan also notes that many lines such as the last one quoted are rich in myth. This last speech unveils a tragedy of revelation that is the keynote and the vehicle of action in OEDIPUS TYRANNOS. But no such development nor suspence could be experienced in SONG OF A GOAT. No change, growth or degeneration occurs in Tonye and Ebriere that bring them on to sin. The basis of the tragedy is not clearly established. Zifa’s tragedy thus is without cause.

African-American poet, Amiri Baraka’s appreciation of the unique African lyricism of Clark’s language is also worth noting. He first of all describes it as ‘so beautiful a work’. He expresses his difficulty in placing Clark’s language, which to him, is English, but it is not. The tone and the references are drawn from a clearly African experience. ‘The English is pushed past the immaculate boredom of the recent Victorians to Non-European quality of experience, though it is the European tongue which seems to shape it, externally. But Clark seems to him after a specific emotional texture that is strange to European literature or life:

Masseur

your womb

Is open and warm as a room

It ought to accommodate many

Ebiere

Well, it seems to like staying empty

Masseur

An empty house, my daughter is a thing

Of danger, if men will not turn in it

Bats or grass will, and that is enough

Signal for worse things to come in

The writing of this play about a traditional Nigerian family split and destroyed by adultery, moves easily through the mythic heart of African life, building a kind of ritual drama that depends much on the writer’s inside for its exactness and strength as it does on the narrating of formal ritualistic acts. The language is gentle and lyrical most of the time, but Clark’s images and metaphors are strikingly and indigenously vivid as evident here:

1st Neighbour

It should be easy to see a leopard

If he were here. His eyes should be

Blazing forth in the dark.

3rd Neighbour

So I hear I have heard them likened

To the light house out on the bar

2nd Neighbour

And its motion is silent as that big house

We must be careful

These are African lines in tone and reference, securing for us readers a sense of place.

Though extensive similarity has been established between this play and Greek tragedy, it is not Greek tragedy. It can stand on its own two feet as Ijaw tragedy. Fergusson thus endorses it as ‘in many ways the most remarkable play to emerge from Nigeria.’

The MASQERADE is not only a sequel to SONG OF A GOAT but a tragedy without hubris. John Ferguson though calling it as ‘not an unworthy companion to SONG OF A GOAT claims it has a far less powerful impact. Here, the verse writing is more certain but less memorable. There is less climax and less anticlimax. The finest writing is in the love talk of the first act between Tufa and Titi with it’s highly, mellifluous passages. Its lightness contrasts well with the somber gravity and grim destruction of the final scene. The handling of plot is untidier, less taut and less controlled. Though suspense and more dramatic development has been detected, the revelation does not come at the beginning – the characters react more strongly when it does come.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Astrarchan, Anthony., ‘Like GOATS TO Slaughter THREE PLAYS by John Pepper Clark’ in BLACK ORPHEUS, No 18, October 1964, pp. 21-4

Clark, J. P. A REED IN THE TIDE

Clark, J.P. THREE PLAYS: SONG OF A GOAT, THE MASQUERADE and THE RAFT

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Applying the Classics to Modern Events

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Many of the plays of long ago were written as political statements that were designed to appeal directly to the masses and depict current events in a sort of parody of events that were actually taking place. Interestingly, these productions continue to be applicable to the events of today’s world in so many ways. When one looks at Tartuffe by Moliere, one has to think of Osama bin Laden and his hypocritical religious fervor. Lysistrata, by Aristophanes, depicts mass protests. And, George Bernard Shaw’s, Major Barbara is idealism at its best.

Osama as Tartuffe has an agenda that is neither rational nor based on any existing rational manifesto and it certainly has nothing to do with any accepted faith as the nation of Islam has projected it. Much like Tartuffe, bin Laden has sandbagged many people into believing that his religious fervor is rational. He draws believers with his assertions that he is truly religious. It could be that Tartuffe was Moliere’s warning across the ages to be on guard against those that are overzealous about religion, and of those who are overzealous in presenting themselves as pious individuals. “Cleante questions Tartuffe by asking, “But if this noble and religious zeal, is quite as perfect as you’d have us feel, How is it that it waited to appear, till you were caught embracing Madame here”. Moliere accomplishes two objectives by these particular words, first he shows that Tartuffe is only pretending to be a pious individual, that when he is alone, or thinks he is alone, with Orgon’s wife he immediately makes a play for her which a truly righteous individual would never do, and secondly he shows that Cleante realizes what is really happening, because he knows how a truly righteous individual would act in that situation, and that Tartuffe is not doing so. A wise world questions Osama bin Laden the same as Moliere questioned Tartuffe’s motives.

Lysistrata, written by Aristophanes more than 2,000 years ago, is about a woman who grows tired of the constant warring of men. She gathers other women who decide to take action by withholding what they feel men desire most. Relating Lysistrata to current events certainly invites the whole “sex as power” theme, but that seems to simplistic. Although one could also compare Lysistrata to modern-day feminists, they are better compared to any group or groups of individuals who protest or try to effect change together. Certainly, one could compare Lysistrata’s adventures to those of the 1970’s. But they are also applied to the current issues that surround the world’s inability to get along; a West vs. East type of struggle, just as above with Tartuffe and Osama bin Laden. It’s amazing how classical productions remain pertinent even two thousand years after they were written; or, at least, their message does. Lysistrata and her cohorts protest, they realize success, and they celebrate. Doubtless, the coming together of the global community would elicit a similar reaction. However, Aristophanes used a little tongue-in-cheek freedom in his writing of the plot. Women withholding sex from their warring men would end battling communities just about as effectively as a sit in would negate the struggles between the developed Western world and the resistant Eastern realm. It’s just not that easy. Still the lesson is clear. Everyone has an innate power to end war, struggle, or any other undesired behavior or state, be those individuals men, women, group, or nation. The humor that Aristophanes uses merely makes the message easier to stomach. In today’s world, the message is less about feminism, power, and control, than working together as a group to achieve social change. Lysistrata’s protests are against a war that is unnecessary, just as the struggles between the United States and its allies and the nations of the Taliban and Osama bin Laden have become. The comparisons between both of these fruitless struggles are hard to ignore. There is no doubt that Lysistrata would elicit a discussion about the needless of war, especially in today’s world of globalization.

Major Barbara, the most recent of the works, written by George Bernard Shaw, and first produced in 1905, depicts the apparent incompatibility between those who do good and those who do evil. Major Barbara of the Salvation Army wonders how an organization such as the one she advocates can warrant accepting funding from organizations such as that which her father represents; a gun manufacturer. Morality and its relation to the immoral comes into question as highlighted by Shaw. In today’s world, business, war, and social institutions continue to be intertwined and the association continues to be somewhat stunning and questionable. How do you warrant social services paid for by a gun manufacturer? How do you reconcile war, good, bad, and society? Should capitalism exist as a funding source for salvation? Shaw’s play is an ideological exploration of such conflicts. But, can idealism be set aside in favor of the pursuit of better things? Again, related to the drama taking place on the world stage, it’s hard to ignore the comparison that can be made between Shaw’s play and the conflict created by terrorism as perpetrated by misplaced religious fervor, resistance, and a desire for vindication and control. As the United States and her allies move into the Middle East in an effort to reform the governments of those countries, they have also attempted to provide aid. One has to remember the aid drops that took place near the beginning of the conflict when the U.S. dropped care packages from the air. As these packages floated to the ground, the people who they were meant to aid must have been wary at best and terrified at worst. There is a certain irony in one’s invader providing aid.

The lessons of Moliere’s Tartuffe, Aristophanes’ Lysistrata, and Shaw’s Major Barbara, although they were created in different ages, display the reality of time. Essentially, the years may change, but the issues remain relatively static. Right or wrong, good and bad, and comedy and reality, continue to be completely relevant regardless of what year a great playwright creates the work. Perhaps it is this relevance that makes such plays as Tartuffe, Lysistrata, and the brief Major Barbara remain so popular among theater goers, actors, and college courses!

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Facts About Online News

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It has created a lot of opportunities for the newspapers to provide breaking news more timely. In this way they can compete with the broadcast journalism. Online newspapers are also cost effective compared to the printed-newspapers. Online newspapers follow the same legal regulations of the printed-newspapers. Online publications are known to reap larger rewards than the printed publications. It can draw larger traffics compared to the printed publications.

Many news reporters are taught to shoot videos and to write news stories that can be published in the online publication also. In many journalism institutions students are being taught about the online publications and online newspapers along with the printed newspapers. Some newspapers have already integrated the internet into each and every aspect of their operations. The classified advertisements are now also being published in both the printed newspapers as well as online newspapers. In today’s scenario it would be difficult to find a newspaper company without a website. With the declining profit margins from the printed newspapers they have explored every corner to get higher profit margins from the websites. Most of the online news-papers do not charge any subscription fee. Some of the news-papers have come with a new version of newspapers that is called E-paper. These E-papers are regarded as the digital replicas of the printed news-papers.

There are also some newspaper companies who provide only the online version of the news-paper. They don’t have any connection with the printed newspapers. These news-papers are recognized by many media groups which makes them different from blog sites. Some of the leading news-papers company which has been operational in printed media for over 100 years have been stopped their printed newspapers and are running on only online news-papers. There are newspapers companies who have only online news-papers but also provide limited publishing or hard copies. These news-papers are called hybrid news-papers. Recent development in electronic news-papers may force some of the newspapers companies to supplement electronic papers too.

Today, you will also come across online news portals that will deliver exam news and short news on the most significant happenings in the country or the world.

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Source by Grayson Wong