Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Dr. Seuss

What do you do once you finish a book in English class? Oh, that’s right…you write a paper on it. And holy cow, are there a lot of topic opportunities for Tale of Two Cities. Feminism Lenses, Character Analysis of Sydney Carton (!), Comparison of Foil Characters Like Miss Pross and Lucie, Why The Heck Does Lucie Choose Darnay and not Carton, Pick Some Symbolism Any Symbolism, Et Cetera.

Mine, though, doesn’t stem from any of those. My idea came from a random thought of vaguely avian creatures with Stars Upon Thars.

Yep, my in-progress paper compares Tale of Two Cities with The Sneetches by Dr. Seuss. And that got me thinking: yeah, Dr. Seuss writes about animals that look like Big Bird crossed with an emu and a teddybear named Sylvester McMonkey McBean. But he also writes about humans. In The Sneetches there’s a not-so-underlying lesson about how groundless and ridiculous discrimination is.

Once the ball of thought got rolling I looked at other stories by Dr. Seuss, and they’re riddled with commentary on human nature. The Butter Battle Book, for instance. Go read it, and then tell me it’s not a brilliant narrative about rising tension and danger rooted in something completely trivial and misunderstood. (Cold War?) And my English teacher mentioned that the Cat in the Hat and that Goldfish that’s always a downer are like Sigmund Freud’s id and ego.

So do your inner psychoanalyst slash sociologist a favor. Put down that vampire/fallen angel/heartbreak novel and go catch up on your Sneetches.