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January 11, 2013

Jonathan Nolan's Short Story "Memento Mori," 2002, U.S.


Image Source: http://www.chromaticblack.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Memento-Mori-MMXII-by-Airn-LeBus-detail.jpg

Mater memento mori - Latin for "Remember your mortality"

Class,

In the comment box below, . . .

. . . the note-taker/scribe from each group should retype the question your group discussed today in class and provide an answer with quotations from the text to support your answers. You MUST put the page number (or, paragraph number if there are no page numbers) in parentheses after any quotation used.

Enter your work on this text as prescribed in class. For example:

Remember: I have to "approve" all comments so you won't see it immediately after posting. After hitting submit, you should see a screen that confirms this.

We are beginning to use some concepts in our discussions that you may or may have had practice using before. I want to be sure that you have a clear understanding of the words we use in class (no more blank stares!) so be sure you are looking up words you don't feel you yet "own" (means, making it a part of your personal vocabulary) by utilizing your dictionaries to the fullest.

Dr. Hobbs

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Posted by lhobbs at January 11, 2013 08:48 AM

Readers' Comments:

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Students of Spring 2011,

Using the direction I provided in some handouts I gave you previously, please type your entry-ticket discussion questions for this reading in the comment box below. These questions will be . . .fair game for the midterm and final exam. In addition to submitting the question to English-blog.com, the question must also be submitted to Turnitin.com. You should also have it written in your Course Journal (collected at midterm and at the final), and have a typed, printed hardcopy to bring with you to class on the day the work is discussed (see syllabus). I will not accept late submissions so mind the deadlines.
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In Jonathan Nolan's Memento Mori, Earl reads several notes written by himself that sometimes possess different tones of voice, as if they were written by different people entirely. In one note on page 5, Earl posits that "people... are never just any one person with one set of attributes... for a few minutes of every day, every man becomes a genius." Are these long notes really being left by a "genius" Earl? How is this "genius" Earl who writes each memo different from the "regular" earl whose actions we are reading?

Posted by: Douglas. Phillips at March 11, 2011 04:30 PM

On page three of Melville’s Memento Mori, he says “It is a photograph of a man holding flowers, standing over a fresh grave.” If you suffered from the amnesia that Earl does, would you want constant reminders of times like this in your life, or would you find other ways to remind you of the happy times you’ve had? What kind of reminders would you use; for instance, would you use pictures, letters, home videos, tattoos, or something else?

Posted by: Meghan at March 12, 2011 09:34 AM

Tara McLoughlin
English 340
Dr. Hobbs
March 8, 2011

Discussion Question: Memento Mori
In the story Memento Mori, the narrator states that his upper torso is covered in words, phrases, bits of information, and instructions reminding him of the memory of what happened to his wife. His tattoo clearly states what had happened. But regular memorial tattoos usually consist of symbols or pictures of loved ones. Do you think that memorial tattoos are just as powerful as the narrator’s written words of what happened? Or do you feel that memorial tattoos are not as painful because they can be interpreted differently, they can allude to good memories whereas the narrator’s tattoo can only remind him of something horrible.

Posted by: Tara McLoughlin at March 12, 2011 11:35 AM

Throughout the course of Jonathan Nolan’s Memento Mori, the narrator alternately seems to focus on the personal state of mind versus Earl’s own experiences. Quotes such as the following establish a dichotomy in the thought pattern, and also provide some insight to the past events:
“And maybe this is where you can retire to when it's over. Your little collection. They can lock you back up in another little room and you can live the rest of your life in the past. But only if you've got a little piece of paper in your hand that says you got him.”

Does the author do an effective job of foreshadowing through the use of this technique? Specifically, what does this alternation add to the story?

Posted by: Lindsay Renner at March 13, 2011 12:47 PM

At the beginning of Memento Mori there is this quote from Melville’s Shiloh: A Requiem, “What like a bullet can undeceive!” Melville seems to be saying that ideas that are worth fighting for are worthless, but it’s not until after death when this is realized. Why do you think Nolan included a quote like this at the start of his short story?

Posted by: William Kopnek at March 13, 2011 05:29 PM

From Memento Mori, by Jonathan Nolan:
“Believing the lie that time will heal all wounds – which is just a nice way of saying that time deadens us.” (9)
Earl, the main character, wrote this to himself to read at a later time because of his memory problems. To most people, this quote could represent the end of a relationship, be it romantically- or family-related. But time is meant differently to Earl, who cannot remember parts of his life without his own messages. Having written this quote to himself, and knowing what he has striven to accomplish during his life, do you think he believes that the time he has spent living has deadened him? Use clear examples from the text as evidence for your answer.

Posted by: Chad W. at March 16, 2011 11:45 PM

From Memento Mori, by Jonathan Nolan:

“People, even regular people, are never just any one person with one set of attributes…every man is a mob, a chain gang of idiots.” (5)

Forgetfulness and idiocy are portrayed in this story as part of the human condition. How do these traits relate to humanity?

Posted by: Amanda Butler at March 19, 2011 10:18 PM

My question for this text is basically how an insane person can be consider either sane or insane if he is aware of his insanity. Earl seems to be unaware of his surroundings but another “him” seems to know everything about him, but seems to keep himself as a another person altogether
“Your Wife always used to say you’d be late for own funeral. Remember that? Her little joke because you were such a slob-always late, always forgetting stuff, even before the incident. Right about now you’re probably wondering if you were late for hers…. Never-ending grief, never-ending anger. Useless without direction… Maybe you can’t understand what happened to you. But do you remember what happened to HER, don’t you? The doctors don’t want to talk about it. They won’t answer my questions. They don’t think it’s right for a man in your condition to hear about those things.”
From what I can understand from the text is basically Earl witness something about his wife that was so devastating that basically broke him in mind, leaving him nothing more than empty shell of the man that he used to be, but a part of him, mostly likely demanding revenge/justice for the action is trying to get Earl to remember and break his rut by leaving him messages. What I am asking is that can you really call this insanity?

Posted by: John Walker at March 20, 2011 10:23 AM

“Sooner or later you’ll want to do something about it. And when you do, you’ll
just have to trust me, because I’m the only one who can help you.” (Nolan 1)
The letter writer and Earl are the same character; however, Nolan creates a clear distinction between the seemingly lucid and cognate persona of the letter writer and the generally confused Earl. Using examples from the
text, construct an argument which explains why the author would choose to utilize such a device.

Posted by: JH Pless at March 21, 2011 09:54 AM

“What like a bullet can undeceive” (1)
What is the significance of this quotation start off the story? Does this quotation refer to Earl’s task that must be done, or does it illustrate how he struggles to understand what has happened to him? In what ways could the “bullet” be a symbol for time in this story? Like a bullet is said to “undeceive”, does Earl’s 10 minutes of clarity represent 10 minutes of his life free of deception? Please use clear examples from the text as evidence for your answer.

Posted by: Eric Dirth at March 21, 2011 12:00 PM

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*NOTE* The deadline for this particular assignment has now passed. Any comments listed below are *ONLY* for the reposting of comments that I specifically asked to be revised or are ones from non-student posters. Any 'student' posts below that missed the assignment deadline will not get credit for the assignment.


~ Dr. Hobbs

Posted by: Dr. Hobbs at March 21, 2011 01:30 PM

"...Now they must ahve tested this out and realized that you could shout yourself hoarse through the tube but it was too narrow to carry much noise. Not enough to attract attention, at least. So a string was run up the tube to a little bell attached to the headstone. If a dead person came back to life, all he had to do was ring his little bell till comone came and dug him up..." (7)

Earl gives himself a bell for his birthday and since he has no memory laughs at the prospect of confusing himself. Is the bell a metaphor for him coming back to life every morning and reading his notes on the ceiling?

Posted by: Taylor Leonard at March 21, 2011 01:38 PM

Dana Jennings
Dr. Hobbs
ENG-340
3/9/11
Entry Ticket: Memento Mori
“Eventually the tattoo artist turns off the noise, wipes Earl’s forearm with a piece of gauze, and wanders over to the back to dig up a pamphlet describing how to deal with a possible infection. Maybe later he’ll tell his wife about this guy and his little note. Maybe his wife will convince him to call the police” (6).
Jonathan Nolan describes the man as a “tattoo artist,” but it seems that his indifference to a self-described “cripple” getting a tattoo when he cannot comprehend the significance (at least in the moment) shows more of a tattooer attitude than artist. Does this show that Nolan is portraying a stereotype that he doesn’t altogether understand, or does he truly believe that sentences and phrases tattooed onto a man’s body can be art?

Posted by: Dana Jennings at March 21, 2011 01:53 PM

The translation of the title of this work, which is in Latin, means “Remember that you are mortal,” or “Remember your death,” depending on the translation. Being that Earl has CRS, or backwards amnesia, and is incapable of remembering anything beyond the last ten minutes, do you think this title is ironic? Explain the significance of the title in relation to the main character and his plight.

Posted by: Sarah Buckner at March 21, 2011 02:46 PM

From “Memento Mori” by Jonathan Nolan:

“The only way out of this mess, of course, is to take steps to ensure that you control the idiots that you become…The best way to do this is with a list.” (5)

Earl is suggesting that in order to remember to act like the person you want to be, you must have a physical reminder. Earl uses a list at first, but eventually tattoos the most important information he needs in order to fulfill the purpose of his life. Do you think a tattoo should be used to represent one’s philosophical belief?

Posted by: Nicole Natoli at March 21, 2011 04:01 PM

“Every man is a mob, a chain gang of idiots” ( 7)
This quote is from Earl in the story “Memento Mori” , in your personal opinion do you think that people really have multiple aspects to their personality. And if these multiple personalities really exist, is it necessary for us to control them by making lists and itemizing our lives?

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*NOTE* The deadline for this particular assignment has now passed. Any comments listed below are *ONLY* for the reposting of comments that I specifically asked to be revised or are ones from non-student posters. Any 'student' posts below that missed the assignment deadline will not get credit for the assignment.


~ Dr. Hobbs

Posted by: Mathew Rodgers at March 21, 2011 05:17 PM

Per the email sent to the class after our last meeting before the break, I extended the deadline for the English-blog entries for "Memento" (as I said I would in class) till the first meeting after the break. At the first meeting after the break (21 March), I agreed to extend the deadline until that afternoon. As of today, Tuesday, March 22, this folder is closed.

~Dr. Hobbs

Posted by: Dr. B. Lee Hobbs at March 22, 2011 02:07 PM

Jordan Miller, Angie Fortunak
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 CA08
23 Jan 2012

Question 1. Who are the characters in “Memento Mori”? Who is the protagonist? Are there any flat/static characters in the short story? If so, who?
Answer: In Memento Mori, there are not that many characters. You have Earl the protagonist, the tattooist, the Large Balding man, with a mustache and a goatee, the Taxi Driver/cop, and the doctors in the hospitals. Even though Earl is the main character he doesn’t really do much, you just see the world through his 10 minute experiences. He is only round when he is telling himself his own synopsis, especially at the end when he is letting himself know how much time is now irrelevant (Nolan 9). The flat characters are used mostly as fillers to just give the setting more plot. The only one that even speaks is the Large Balding Man, who only speaks through the skin of Earl (Nolan 6).

Posted by: Jordan Miller, Angie Fortunak at January 23, 2013 11:14 AM

Allison Knipe
Partner: Chris
Dr.Hobbs
23 January 2013

Question: 9. In a work of literature, “foreshadowing” is the presentation of hints and clues that tip the reader off as to what is to come later in the work. A foreshadowing is the presentation of details, characters, or incidents in a narrative in such a way that later events are prepared for
(or, “shadowed forth”). At the end of Nolan’s story, the protagonist gets his revenge. His victimizer is killed. Show where there is evidence of a foreshadowing of this event in the text. Be specific.

Answer: In Jonathan Nolan’s “Memento Mori”, he uses foreshadowing in order to let the reader guess or predict what will happen next. In the story’s end, the main character’s victimizer is killed. Leading up to this, Nolan uses foreshadowing to help predict that this will happen. On page 8, Earl describes the man that he falls victim to as a “large man, balding, with a mustache and goatee.” After he describes this man, he writes out his plan that will soon unfold. “I wonder if he’ll feel stupid when you find him. Tracked down by the ten-minute man. Assassinated by a vegetable.” This line lets you know that Earl wants to find him, and kill him. This foreshadowing helps the reader understand the passion this man has wanting to kill his victimizer.

Posted by: Allison Knipe at January 23, 2013 11:17 AM

Octavio Herrera, Lauren Irish
Dr. Hobbs
Academic Writing II CAO4
23 January 2013

Question: In literature, “setting” is when and where the story takes place. What is the setting of “Memento Mori”? Where is the protagonist when the story begins? How many other settings are there in the story? Name them all.

Answer: When the story begins the protagonist is at his wife’s funeral and he is looking at the headstone “You’re reading the headstone, trying to figure out whose funeral you’re at” (Nolan 1) After he awakens he is in hospital room with white walls and everything already sorted for him “It’s a white room, overwhelmingly white, from the walls and the curtains to the institutional furniture and the bedspread. The alarm clock is ringing from the white desk under the window with the white curtains.” (Nolan 2). The setting changes later on in the story to a car “Earl’s eyes are wide open, staring through the window of the car” (Nolan 8).

Posted by: Octavio Herrera, Lauren Irish at January 23, 2013 12:17 PM

Vintoria Hopps and Jasmine Lowe
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 CA08
23 January 2013

Question: We have already discussed Roberts’s chapter on point of view. What point (or) points of View exists in this story? Be specific. How does this affect the story? Who is speaking to whom? Would the story have “worked” if another point of view was used?

Answer: According to Robert’s chapter on point of view, the short story “Momento Mori” is told in second person point of view. Throughout the story Earl writes himself notes to remember things that he will forget in the future. “You were there, you can be sure of that. That’s what the pictures for the one tacked to the wall by the door. It’s not customary to take pictures at a funeral, but somebody, your doctors, I guess, knew you wouldn't remember. They had it blown up nice and big and stuck it right there, next to the door, so you couldn't help but see it every time you got up to find out where she was.” (Nolan pg.1) In this quote he is talking to himself about what he will soon forget. This story will not have worked in first or third person point of view because there is no way he could write notes to himself in first person or third person by using “I”, “Me” or “He, She” The story will not share the same meaning or have the same affect.

Posted by: Vintoria Hopps and Jasmine Lowe at January 23, 2013 11:17 PM

Jade Lowe
Brynn Laverdure
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 CA08
23 January 2013

Question 4: How long does Earl have before his new memories will disappear forever? How many places in the text is this mentioned? Identify each place in the text.

Answer: In Momento Mori, Earl has approximately ten minutes before his new memories will disappear forever. The phrase ten minutes is mentioned three times in the text. They were found on page 1 paragraph 4, page 4 paragraph 5, and page 5 paragraph 4.

Posted by: Jade Lowe at January 23, 2013 11:28 PM

Briyana A. & Jennifer E.
Dr.Hobbs
English 122 CA08 Memento Mori
24 January 2013
Question: The Title Is In Latin. Since Those Might Not Be Words You Know, Did You Look Them Up Like You Were Asked To? What Is A Memento Mori? Are These Words Mentioned In The Story? Is There A Memento Mori In The Stoy? If So, What?

Yes. The expression Memento Mori means "Remember Your Mortality." A memento mori is a reminder or mortality or death. No. We think the memento mori in this story is the amnesia the man had. Its a sign he's getting old.

Posted by: Briyana at January 24, 2013 02:47 PM

Analisa Johnson and Marlie Gonzalez
Dr.Hobbs
Eng 121-CA 08
27 January 2013

Question: Recall the meaning of dynamic as explained by Edgar V. Roberts. Does the protagonist fit this description, i.e. is he dynamic? How so? What change or transformation occurs in his character?

Answer: The protagonist does fit the description of a dynamic character as explained by Edgar Roberts. According to Roberts, a dynamic character "recognize, change with or adjust to circumstances". Earl realizes that he is forgetful, so he adjust to his condition by writing down reminders and notes to help him remember things and ideas.

Posted by: Analisa Johnson at January 24, 2013 03:31 PM

Sade Loiseau and Marie Ryan
Dr. Hobbs
ENG122 CA08
24 January 2013

Question:What is wrong with the protagonist, i.e. what happened to him? Is there an exact condition
given somewhere in the text? What does it mean? How does this affect the story?

Answer: In the story Earl, the protagonist, is in a hospital room (page 2, second paragraph). He can not remember anything for more than ten minutes, which seems to stem from that fact that someone raped and killed his wife (page 6, 8 paragraph). This traumatic event caused some psychotic break. His exact condition is never mentioned. The psychological condition of Earl makes the story somewhat confusing but also very interesting.

Posted by: Sade Loiseau and Angie Fortunak at January 24, 2013 11:46 PM

Ana DeMaio, Jacob Gates

Dr. Hobbs

Academic Writing 2 CA04 in Crawford Hall, Room #6
24 January 2013

Question: We have already discussed Roberts’s chapter on point of view. What point (or) points of view exist in this story? Be specific. How does this affect the story? Who is speaking to whom? Would the story have “worked” if another point of view was used?

Answer: The short story, Memento Mori is written a few different point of views. It alternates from second person to third person dramatic. In the notes that he writes for himself, the pictures he hangs and the bits of story that are in italics are told in second person. “Your wife always used to say you`d be late for your own funeral. Remember that? Her little joke because you were such a slob- always late, always forgetting stuff, even before the incident”(Melville 1). It is almost like he is speaking to himself. The narration of the story is told in third person dramatic and the narrator is reporting only what he can see and hear. “Earl rises and takes a look around. The room is large for a hospital empty linoleum stretches out from the bed in three directions”(Melville 2) .Being told in two different point of views does affect the story. It seems Earl is talking to Earl which has the reader question the mindset of Earl and the narrator. It has the reader question how reliable to information in the story is.

Posted by: Ana DeMaio, Jacob Gates at January 25, 2013 03:34 AM

Ti’rani Rye
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA08
12 September 2013

Question: “The title is in Latin. Since those might not be words you know, did you look them up like you were asked to do? What is a “memento mori”? Are these words mentioned in the story? Is there a memento mori in the story? If so, what?”

Answer: Momento Mori means “remember you will die” this holds more meaning to this story in particular because of the significance of what memory and time means to the main character. These words are not mentioned in the story straight forward but is translated through a message from a gift the man gave himself. The gift is a metal bell, a similar bell was used years ago by people who were buried because they thought to be dead, if they were in fact alive, they could ring the bell and people could unbury them. It is a momento to the main character to remember that he will die.

Posted by: Ti'rani Rye at September 12, 2013 10:31 AM

Maryerie Rojas
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA 08
12 September 2013

Question 1: Who are the characters in “Memento Mori”? Who is the protagonist? Are there any flat/static characters in the short story? If so, who?

Answer: The are two versions of one character in this short story. Earl is the protagonist and he is depicted in third person speaking to himself and a first person relaying his experiences. There is no flat or static character of the story because the third person narrative explains how past and present Earl act. Third person Earl explains the characterization of first person Earl. In the first sentence, third person Earl expresses some traits of past Earl. He states, “Your wife always used to say you’d be late for your own funeral. Remember that? Her little joke because you were such a slob - always late, always forgetting stuff, even before the incident” (Nolan 1). Because there are two points of view of Earl, there is a round view of him.

Posted by: Maryerie Rojas at September 13, 2013 12:00 AM

Kiara Michelle Burgos Diaz
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA 08
13 September 2013

Question: In literature, “setting” is when and where the story takes place. What is the setting of “Memento Mori”? Where is the protagonist when the story begins? How many other settings are there in the story? Name them all.

Answer: The story of "Memento Mori" from Jonathan Nolan takes place in the nineteenth century. We can appreciate this in the first setting of the story when Earl, the protagonist, wake up in a white room with white ceilings and white curtains. We can infers that he was in the room of a mental hospital. Being there, by the door, he found a photo of an MRI. The MRI is an artefact that allows us to visualize the internal structures of a body. This kind of technology belongs to a recent period, allowing us to put the story in this time. Although Earl wake up for the first time in this room, throughout history in his search for a person, assuming to be the murderer of the wife that he can remember, "I RAPED AND KILLED YOUR WIFE" (Nolan 6); Earl keeps waking up in different places including the room of a motel, a tattoo shop and on the end after leaving the scene of a crime in a car.

Posted by: Kiara M Burgos Diaz at September 13, 2013 12:33 AM

Ryan MacCarthy
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 CA08 Academic Writing II
13 September 2013


Question: How long does Earl have before his new memories will disappear forever? How many places in the text is this mentioned? Identify each place in the text.


Answer: Earl has ten minutes before his new memories will disappear forever. This mentioned only a few times throughout the text, however, has a meaningful purpose for the short story. Nolan states, “A few more minutes and you’ll be heading for the door, looking for her all over again, breaking down when you find the picture” (Nolan 1). This is not the only time the “ten minutes” is mentioned by Nolan however as he references it later on, “Just the same ten minutes, over and over again. So how can you forgive if you can’t remember to forget?” (4). Later on, he states, “You’ve only got about ten minutes, in fact. Then it starts all over again. So do something with the time you’ve got” (4). Nolan references Earl only having ten minutes before his new memories disappear three different times in “Memento Mori.”

Posted by: Ryan MacCarthy at September 13, 2013 11:54 AM

Taina Valcarcel
Dr. Hobbs
September 13, 2013
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA08

Question: . In this course, we will discover and discuss many “symbols” in the stories we read. A future Roberts chapter will be devoted to this idea. For now, however, let’s discuss the bell. What is the significance (importance) of the bell to the story? After you have taken that into
account—and, of course, the meaning of the phrase memento mori—what does the bell
probably symbolize?

Answer: The importance of the bell is a reminder that we all die at some point in our lives. In the story, the person who wrote the letter said, "After
all, everybody else needs mirrors to remind themselves who they are. You?re no different" (Nolan, 7). The person is trying to tell the disabled person that the bell is a reminder on who they really are: a corpse walking around, a vegetable so to say. They are living their life over again and they are stuck in the same ten minutes and will be for the rest of their life. the bell just shows the joke of a corpse still alive in their coffin and that the bell is the only thing to keep them sane, the false hope that they can still be saved.

Posted by: Taina Valcarcel at September 13, 2013 12:44 PM

Tori Thomas
Dr. Hobbs
Academic Writing II ENG 122 CA16
16 September, 2013


Question: What is wrong with the protagonist, i.e. what happened to him? Is there an exact condition given somewhere in the text? What does it mean? How does this affect the story?

Answer: In this story Earl is the protagonist. Earl is trying to seek revenge on the person that killed his wife. Earl was admitted in to a mental institution and then escaped to find revenge on the killer. Earl has a mental issue that does not allow him to remember things on a daily basis.

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*NOTE* The deadline for this particular assignment has now passed. Any comments listed below are *ONLY* for the reposting of comments that I specifically asked to be revised or are ones from non-student posters. Any 'student' posts below that missed the assignment deadline will not get credit for the assignment. ~ Dr. Hobbs

Posted by: Tori Thomas at September 16, 2013 01:01 PM

Hubert Reuter
Dr .B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
30 January 2014

Question:
In literature, “setting” is when and where the story takes place. What is the setting of
“Memento Mori”? Where is the protagonist when the story begins? How many other settings
are there in the story? Name them all.


Answer:

In the story, a man named Earl has amnesia. Because of his inability to remember things for more than a few minutes, he uses notes and tattoos to keep track of new information (Nolen 1). Earl developed his condition after he and his wife were attacked by an unknown assailant. His wife was killed and Earl suffered severe head injury (Nolen 1). The story jumps between two time-frames. The first time frame finds Earl confined to a mental institution which he learns through written notes he had left himself (Nolen 1). The second time frame finds Earl in a tattoo shop getting a note for himself tattooed on his arm (Nolen 6). The third time frame he is in a hotel and the final time frame Earl is in the back if a cop car.

Posted by: Hubert Reuter at January 30, 2014 02:02 PM

Maxx Howarth
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG122 Academic Writing II CA12
30 January 2014

QUESTION #1:
Who are the characters in "Memento Mori"? Who is the protagonist? Are there any flat/static characters in the short story? If so, who?

ANSWER:
In the short story "Memento Mori," the protagonist is Earl, "the ten-minute man." As for flat/static characters, I feel as though there are two. The first being the tattoo artist whom wrote on Earl's arm in capital letters "I RAPED AND KILLED YOUR WIFE" (Nolan 6) and the second being the driver whom was in front of the divider Earl is behind (Nolan 9). Why? Well, by definition, flat characters "have no more than a single role to perform in a story" and "end pretty much where they begin" (Roberts 68). However, flat characters do serve a purpose, which is to "highlight the development of the round characters" (Roberts 69). Thus, in this case, the tattoo artist aided Earl's development through engraving a permanent message underneath his skin to support his memory, as did the driver with his maneuvering of the car, allowing Earl to grab ahold of his bell and read the engraving upon it.

Posted by: Maxx Howarth at January 30, 2014 02:52 PM

Bianca T. Smith
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
30 Jan. 2014

Question #5: Recall the meaning of dynamic as explained by Edgar V. Roberts. Does the protagonist fit this description, i.e. is he dynamic? How so? What change or transformation occurs in his character?

Answer: Dynamic is when characters recognize, change with, or adjust to circumstances. The protagonist, Earl, is a dynamic character. He has amnesia from the attack and he has a hard time remembering things for more than a couple of minutes. He writes himself notes in order to remember certain things. For example, he woke up in a mental hospital where he put notes on the ceiling so he remembers where he lives and where he is at."He lies back and reads the sign taped to the ceiling again. It says, in crude block capitals,THIS IS YOUR ROOM. THIS IS A ROOM IN A HOSPITAL. THIS IS WHERE YOU LIVE
NOW"(Nolan 2). He is a dynamic character because since he has amnesia, he learns to accept his condition and tries to do whatever it takes to remember things again and to get revenge on the person that attacked him and his wife. The change with this character is that he cant remember what happened when he succeeded in getting revenge with the attacker. He changes when he gets rid of the watch, and which the watch symbolized the old him and his old ways. "What the hell do you need a watch for, anyway? It was an antique. Deadweight tugging at your wrist. Symbol of the old you. The you that believed in time"(Nolan 9). He changed and left the old him and how he lose faith in time or time lost faith in him.


Posted by: Bianca T. Smith at January 30, 2014 05:05 PM

Gabriela Caminero
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
30 January 2014

Question #3
What is wrong with the protagonist, i.e. what happened to him? Is there an exact condition
given somewhere in the text? What does it mean? How does this affect the story?
Answer:
What is wrong with the protagonist is that he suffered a type of memory loss called backwards amnesia like stated in the story, “Backwards amnesia. That’s what the sign says. CRS disease.” (Nolan 1). What it means is that every 10 minutes he forgets what he was doing. The way that this affects the story is that with this condition that he has he is never able to lose feelings for his wife or the anger that he had when she got killed because that is the last memory that he remembers like if it just recently happened.

Posted by: Gabriela Caminero (new) at January 30, 2014 05:30 PM

Jeffrey Wingfield
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
29 January 2014
In a work of literature, “foreshadowing” is the presentation of hints and clues that tip the
reader off as to what is to come later in the work. A foreshadowing is the presentation of
details, characters, or incidents in a narrative in such a way that later events are prepared for
(or, “shadowed forth”). At the end of Nolan’s story, the protagonist gets his revenge. His
victimizer is killed. Show where there is evidence of a foreshadowing of this event in the text.
Be specific.

Posted by: Jeffrey Wingfield at January 30, 2014 06:55 PM

Shelby Marrero
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG Academic Writing II CA12
30 Jan. 2014

Question #2
In literature, “setting” is when and where the story takes place. What is the setting of
“Memento Mori”? Where is the protagonist when the story begins? How many other settings
are there in the story? Name them all.

Answer:
The protagonist is in the mental institution at the beginning of the story. In the story the sticky note that he read says, "THIS IS YOUR ROOM. THIS IS A ROOM IN A HOSPITAL. THIS IS WHERE YOU LIVE NOW (Nolan 2)."

Posted by: Shelby Marrero at January 30, 2014 11:06 PM

Traneisha Cunningham
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
31 January 2013

QUESTION #4:
How long does Earl have before his new memories will disappear forever? How many places in the text is this mentioned? Identify each place in the text.

ANSWER:
Earl has ten minutes before his new memories will disappear forever. Earl's ten minute memory is included five times in the text. The first mention was you're probably a wreck. But give it five minutes, maybe ten. Maybe you can even go a whole half hour before you forget (Nolan 1). The second mention in the text was you're a fraction; you're the ten-minute man (Nolan 4). The third mention is just the same ten minutes, over and over again. So how can you forgive if you can't remember to forget (Nolan 4)? The fourth mention is but you don't have much time. You've only got about ten minutes, in fact. Then it starts all over again (Nolan 4). The last mention of Earl's ten minute memory is states tracked down by the ten-minute man (Nolan 8).

Posted by: Traneisha Cunningham at January 30, 2014 11:17 PM

Sawyer Hand
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
31 January 2014

Question: How long does Earl have before his new memories will disappear forever? How many places in the text is this mentioned? Identify each place in the text.

Answer: In the story Earl has ten minutes before his new memories will disappear forever. First it is mentioned in the lines, "Believe me, I know how you feel. you're probably a wreck. But give it five minutes, maybe ten. Maybe you can even go a whole half hour before you forget'(Nolan 1). The next time it is mentioned is in the line, "...that doesn't really apply to you anymore, does it? Just the same ten minutes, over and over again" (Nolan 4).It's mentioned again a couple sentences later when the author writes, "You're a fraction; you're the ten-minute man"(Nolan 4). The author doesn't stop there and continues to mention it throughout the story. He mentions it again in the line, " You've only got about ten minutes, in fact" (Nolan 4). The author brings it back up later on in the sentence, "Tracked down by the ten-minute man" (Nolan 8). That's the last time the author mentions it. He mentioned it a total of five times.

Posted by: sawyer hand at January 30, 2014 11:39 PM

Sarah A Ellis
Dr. B Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing CA12
31 January 2014

Question 8:
In this course, we will discover and discuss many “symbols” in the stories we read. A future Roberts chapter will be devoted to this idea. For now, however, let’s discuss the bell. What is the significance (importance) of the bell to the story? After you have taken that into account—and, of course, the meaning of the phrase memento mori—what does the bell probably symbolize?

Answer:
The bell represents a reminder tool for a joke. Earl said the purpose of the bell is so “every time you take it out of your pocket and wonder, Why do I have this bell? a little part of you will remember and laugh” (Nolan 6). The bell symbolizes a tool to simulate laughter and joy at a person’s saddest hour.

Posted by: Sarah Ellis at January 31, 2014 12:34 AM

Makenzie Holler
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
31 January 2014

Question #6: We have already discussed Robert's chapter on point of view. What point (or) points of view exist in this story? Be specific. How does this affect the story? Who is speaking to whom? Would the story have "worked" if another point of view was used?

Answer: There are two different points of views in this story. At the beginning the narrator uses first person. The very first line states; "Your wife always used to say you'd be late for your own funeral". (Melville 1) Then later on into the story, the point of view switches too third person. Both the "He" and "You" were both referring to Earl.
This affects the story because when the narrator is talking to Earl, the narrator is describing to him the incident and how it really happened.
The narrator is speaking to Earl throughout the entire story. I think the story would have worked either way. It could have stayed in first person or stayed in third person, but switching them up made it more catchy to read.

Posted by: Makenzie Holler at January 31, 2014 01:21 AM

Berlin Waters
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122Academic Writing II CA12
31 January 2014

Question #1: Who are the characters is "Memento Mori"? Who is the protagonist? Are there any flat/static characters in the short story? If so, who?

Answer:
In "Memento Mori" the only named character is Earl. There are other unnamed characters such as his late wife, his attacker, and the hospital workers who could be considered static characters, however, they play little to no role in the story, leaving Earl as the protagonist.

Posted by: Berlin Waters at January 31, 2014 02:39 AM

Jeffrey Wingfield, Bianca T. Smith
Dr. Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
31 January 2014
Question:
How long does Earl have before his new memories will disappear forever? How many places
in the text is this mentioned? Identify each place in the text.

Answer:
The author can maintain his memory for anywhere from five minutes to thirty minutes, however, it is generally only ten minutes. He says, early in the story, “But give it five minutes, maybe ten. Maybe you can even go a whole half hour before you forget.” (Nolan 1) He also says “You’ve only got about ten minutes, in fact.” (Nolan 4)

Posted by: Jeffrey Wingfield, Bianca T. Smith at January 31, 2014 10:58 AM

Gabriela Caminero Sarah Ellis
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
1 February 2014

Question #6
We have already discussed Roberts’s chapter on point of view. What point (or) points of view exists in this story? Be specific. How does this affect the story? Who is speaking to whom? Would the story have “worked” if another point of view was used?

Answer:
First person, second person and third person point of view exist in the story. The way that this affects the story is you are able to see what is happening in the story dialect wise, emotionally and everything that is going on in Earl’s head. This quote shows the story dialect wise, “Who needs half an hour to brush their teeth?” this shows an example of what is going on in his head, “Sooner or later you’ll want to do something about it. And when you do, you’ll just have to trust me, because I’m the only one who can help you.” Lastly, this quote shows how you are able to know what Earl is feeling, “, GET UP, GET OUT RIGHT NOW. THESE PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO KILL YOU.”
Throughout the story Earl is speaking to himself, you just see him speaking to himself from different points of views. The story would have not worked if all three points of views were not used because without those points of views there will be a lesser understanding of what is going on and the story would be more difficult to figure out.

Posted by: Gabriela Caminero at February 2, 2014 09:44 AM

Traneisha Cunningham, Jared Arnold
Dr. B. Lee Hobbs
ENG 122 Academic Writing II CA12
31 January 2013

QUESTION #5:
Recall the meaning of dynamic as explained by Edgar V. Roberts. Does the protagonist fit this description, i.e. is he dynamic? How so? What change or transformation occurs in his character?

ANSWER:
Dynamic characters recognize, change with, or adjust to circumstances. These changes may be shown in an action or actions; the realization of new strength and therefore the affirmation of previous decisions; the acceptance of new conditions and the need for making changes; the discovery of unrecognized truths; or the reconciliation of the character with adverse conditions (Roberts 68). The protagonist is dynamic because of the circumstance which he is in that has changed his character from the way he was before. The circumstance he encountered had been that he was been attacked which caused him to end up with backward amnesia. This illness caused him to change and adjust his character in multiple ways. For instance, Earl could not remember anything for longer than ten minutes so he had to leave himself little notes around reminding him of the things in his life. "He lies back and reads the sign taped to the ceiling again. It says, in crude block capitals, THIS IS YOUR ROOM. THIS IS A ROOM IN A HOSPITAL. THIS IS WHERE YOU LIVE NOW" (Nolan 2). Earl had adjusted himself along with his lifestyle to fit around his backwards amnesia which is an example of how he is a dynamic character. Another example of how Earl is a dynamic character is how he changed because of the attack. “The arrow leads up Earl’s arm, crosses at the shoulder, and descends onto his upper torso, terminating at a picture of a man’s face that occupies most of his chest” (Nolan 7). Within the ten minutes Earl’s memory returned he had gotten tattoo’s across his body leaving notes to remember and a sketch of the man’s face who attacked him along with his wife. Throughout the story readers are given more information leading into Earl's past and current life which express how he has changed and adjusted his life making Earl a dynamic character.

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~ Dr. Hobbs

Posted by: Traneisha Cunningham Jared Arnold at February 2, 2014 02:37 PM

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