Almost, but Not Quite: Mansfield Park’s Henry Crawford

NOV / DEC 2016: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO In Jane Austen’s novels, the love stories are presented with such contrasts: the heroine with her hero and with the foil, a man who vies for our heroine’s hand but isn’t suitable for her for whatever reason (Sense and Sensibility’s John Willoughby, Persuasion’s William Elliot, just to... Continue Reading →

Saint Thomas Aquinas

MARCH / APRIL 2016: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO The medieval period in Europe was marked by many notable changes and developments, including the entrenchment and dominance of Christianity. This was seen in every aspect of everyday life and governance, as well as in the universities, the centers of learning. In the eleventh century Europe experienced... Continue Reading →

The Endurance of William Shakespeare

NOV / DEC 2015: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO Dramatist Ben Jonson once praised William Shakespeare in a poem, declaring that he “was not of an age, but for all time!” Indeed William Shakespeare, the playwright from Stratford-upon-Avon who lived from c1560s to 1616, very much embodied the burst of creativity and art that came out... Continue Reading →

The Rise and Fall of Lady Macbeth

HALLOWEEN 2015: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO There are many memorable villains in William Shakespeare’s works. One of the most conniving and manipulative is Lady Macbeth from the famous Scottish tragedy Macbeth. Spouse to a man prophesized to be king, she is the driving force behind achieving their political ambitions by any means necessary. But despite... Continue Reading →

Ours is the Fury: The Baratheons

NOV / DEC 2014: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO When readers are introduced to House Baratheon in A Song of Ice and Fire, there is a sense of prestige that goes with their name as they are the ruling house in the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. Yet strangely enough the blood-related brothers of this family—Robert, Stannis,... Continue Reading →

Rickie Elliot: The Longest Journey

SEPT / OCT 2014: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO The Longest Journey is considered E.M. Forster’s least-known and, according to some, least-liked novel. Indeed, the story sounds simple and straightforward, following Rickie Elliot, an intelligent and sensitive young man whose ideas and dreams are cultivated in Cambridge as he encounters a myriad of challenges moving forward... Continue Reading →

Tangled: Realizing a Dream

JAN / FEB 2014: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO Haven’t any of you ever had a dream?” Rapunzel asks a group of thugs hanging out in a tavern. In Disney’s Tangled the power, importance, and the fulfillment of dreams play an important role in Rapunzel and Flynn’s stories. She dreams of visiting the source of the... Continue Reading →

Orphan Black: Down the Rabbit Hole

HALLOWEEN 2013: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO At the beginning of Orphan Black, Sarah Manning’s goal is simple: go back to the city, get her child back from her foster home, and start a new life together. Things get complicated when she sees a woman who looks exactly like her jump in front of a train.... Continue Reading →

The Vanity of Mrs. Norris

SEPT / OCT 2013: BY LIANNE M. BERNARDO She may not possess nefarious magical powers used for ill. She may not live in an eerie castle or have a deadly criminal past. Her goal in life is not world domination. But Mansfield Park’s Mrs. Norris is so mean and false in her attitudes and impressions... Continue Reading →

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