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Lynn's Thoughts for 1/21/11

Lynn's picture

                 I’ve started doing my reading today, since I have most of Friday afternoon off. I admit that I’m not terribly far into the text – I don’t know how this would translate to the hard copy most of the class uses, but I’m about twenty pages into the eReader edition of the chapter – but I just finished the section where Darwin discusses how tiny, almost unnoticeable changes multiply over time until the descendants of two similar animals become completely different species.

                I don’t claim that this is an especially profound idea, but I find myself fixated on it. Tiny, insignificant differences grow so that the end results are almost unrecognizable, when compared with their roots. Is this as fascinating as I think it is?

                I’m not entirely certain that I yet understand how the literature portion of this class will tie into the biological portion, but I feel as though this concept is leading me in the right direction toward some sort of understanding. I am focusing on the character aspect of literature, yes, but I think that evolution is readily applicable to character, while I still have my reservations about the rest of literature. (By reservations, understand that I do not mean doubts so much as confusion.) Throughout the life of a person – rather, a character – tiny, seemingly unimportant changes occur every moment of every day, until at the end of one’s life, one is completely different from the person one was born as. I think that I may have tended, in the past, to see characters as dynamic but unevolving, because I assumed that I would be able to point my finger at the page and identify the exact moment a character evolved. I am beginning to think, however, that characters can evolve just as slowly as the natural world, and that we can only see that evolution in retrospect – and that, indeed, the evolution may be impossible to spot because, as slow as it is, it is also eternally ongoing.

                Just a thought. 


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