About Dead Stars

Paz Márquez-Benítez (1894-1983)

Paz Marquez-Benitez, a Filipina writer born in 1894 in Lucena City, Quezon, authored the primary Filipino trendy English-language short story, Dead Stars, revealed within the Philippine Herald in 1925. Born into the prominent and prosperous Marquez household of Quezon province, she was among the many first era of Filipinos skilled within the American education system which used English as the medium of instruction. She graduated high school in Tayabas High Schooland college from the University of the Philippines with a Bachelor of Arts diploma in 1912.

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She was a member of the first freshman class of the University of the Philippines, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1912. Two years after graduation, she married Francisco Benitez, with whom she had four kids. Márquez-Benítez later turned a trainer on the University of the Philippines, who taught short-story writing and had turn out to be an influential figure to many Filipino writers in the English language.

The yearly held Paz Marquez-Benitez Lectures in the Philippines honors her memory by focusing on the contribution of Filipino ladies writers to Philippine Literature in the English language. Though she only had another published quick story after ―Dead Stars‖ this of which is entitled ―A Night In The Hills,‖ nevertheless, she made her mark in Philippine literature as a result of her work is taken into account the primary modern Philippine quick story.

For Marquez-Benitez, writing was a life-long occupation. In 1919, she founded ―Woman’s Home Journal‖, the primary women’s magazine in the nation. ―Filipino Love Stories‖, reportedly the first anthology of Philippine stories in English by Filipinos, was compiled in 1928 by Marquez-Benitez from the works of her students.

When her husband died in 1951, she took over as editor of the Philippine Journal of Education at UP. She held the editorial submit for over 20 years. ―Dead Stars‖ is the 1925 quick story that gave delivery to fashionable Philippine writing in English.

TRIVIA: Dead Stars had been praised as ―a model of perfection in character delineation, local color, plot, and message.‖

Since the author’s life and experiences isn’t significant to the content of the brief story, MoralPhilosophical as a literary lens was applied. This is an approach that places literature as one which teaches morality and explores philosophical points. By trying and analyzing Benitez’ ―Dead Stars‖ the brief story reflects the time by which the literary work was written together with the language, the norms and the way folks think. It serves as a literary time machine for readers because it allows them to understand how courtship, marriage and fidelity have been seen via the early 1900 requirements. It renders a sound comparability between the previous and the current, the prevailing modern culture and the fading, almost out of date tradition.

I could say that the philosophical principle of the story is love. This is additional compared to the concepts and dialogues of the characters in the story like the concept of engagement and marriage, the dialogue of Esperanza which is ―I am not blind, or deaf; I see and hear what perhaps some are trying to keep from me‖ and in addition ―If you are tires of – why don’t you inform me you would possibly be uninterested in me‖, the words of Alfredo to Julia which are ―I could examine you all my life.‖ and ―Nothing? There is you.‖ and the idea by which Alfredo had been seeing gentle of the useless stars and the immense unhappiness that invaded his spirit. These ideas and words from the characters of the story deliver the force this unifying thread: Love is like a puzzle, it is confusing and thoughts blowing for it could be gained and it can also be misplaced in a snap of a finger.

PART TWO: MY TEXT-DEPENDENT INTERPRETATION

In Light of Modernist Vistas: Formalism (Elemental Exploration) and Structuralism (Binary Opposition and Signification)

EXEGESIS ―Was he being cheated by life? Love—he seemed to have missed it! Or was the love that others informed about a mere fabrication of fervid imagination, and exaggeration of the commonplace, a glorification of insipid monotonies similar to made up his love life? Was love a combination of circumstances, or sheer native capability of soul? In these days love was, for him, still the eternal puzzle; for love as he knew it, was a stranger to like as he divined it may be.‖ –Alfredo Julia is quite completely different from Esperanza—―a girl putting and vividly alive, the lady that would cause violent commotion in his coronary heart, but had no place within the completed ordering of his life.” The rare-turnedregular neighboring trips lead Alfredo to deep conversations with Julia and hence, develop an admiration for the girl. Sometimes, he would neglect he’s engaged, persevering with his conferences with Julia whereas thinking that Esperanza ―was not prone to take pleasure in unprovoked jealousies… (for) she was a believer within the regenerative virtue of institutions, in their energy to manage feeling in addition to conduct‖.

Unfortunately, he also forgets the fact that Esperanza is a girl and, being so is already a risk factor for jealousies, provoked or in any other case. ―I don’t perceive you at all! I assume I know why you have been detached to me these days. I am not blind, or deaf. I see maybe some are trying to maintain you away from me… Whatever my shortcomings, and little doubt they are many in your eyes, I have by no means gone out of my way, out of my place to discover a man.‖ – Esperanza Julia is in love with Alfredo. That a lot is pretty apparent in the story, especially after studying belatedly that Alfredo is engaged. An unconscious believer himself in the regenerative virtue of institutions, Alfredo nonetheless marries Esperanza. Over the years, he turns into an impassive husband. I really feel unhappy for both of them but should I say they brought it upon themselves? Alfredo, for one, does not likely know what he wants and so he lives his life as it comes. He was not unhappy in his marriage. He felt no revolt: only the calm of capitulation to what he acknowledged as irresistible forces of circumstance and of character… From his capability of complete detachment he derived a strange solace… At such occasions did Esperanza feel baffled and hopeless; he was mild, even tender, but immeasurably distant, beyond reach. –Alfredo Eight years later, he nonetheless couldn’t forget Julia. So whereas on enterprise, he makes a aspect trip to Julia’s hometown to verify if he had meant something to her and her to him. Julia has not married. This implies many things—one of which could be that she remains to be in love with Alfredo however chooses to not struggle for that love as a end result of she was taught that the act of giving by way of self-denial is an effective factor and so she turned from a spirited young woman right into a boring one residing a boring life after she lost Alfredo to propriety and social order. What did Alfredo find during his meeting with Julia after his marriage?

Dead stars So that was all over. Why, why hade he obstinately clung to that dream from the weariness of actuality? And now, mere actuality had robbed him of the dream. So all these years—since when?—he had been seeing the light of dead stars, long extinguished, yet seemingly nonetheless of their appointed locations within the heavens. -Alfredo Alfredo has been clinging onto one thing that’s unattainable as a end result of he is tired of the predictability of his life. Julia was a like a star, brimming his uninteresting life with mild and pleasure for a quick while. Because of the choices they made, Julia and Alfredo (and even Esperanza) turn out to be dead stars.

It is in this section of the paper the place Formalism as a literary lens was used. This is the key to understand the which means of the textual content exists inside the text itself. It involves elemental exploration of the literary piece by way of explication and exegesis. If one will look and interpret the story, Dead Stars is a love story written in prose with a heart-warming message. It is informed from the attitude of Alfredo Salazar who’s in private battle with his feelings towards two women—Esperanza, his fiancée of 4 years, and Julia Salas whom he met whereas ―neighboring‖.

Esperanza is the embodiment of the best wife to the ideal man, and they also make a super couple in the eyes of society. Alfredo has pursued her initially of their relationship with intense courtship, but later on, the feeling appears to subside. These interpretations of the poem based mostly on the views of the author convey to the pressure unifying thread: Our choices or decisions in life could make us dead stars – we live in our delegated places in the society but not really glimmering, not truly living our lives.

It is on this part of the paper where STRUCTURALISM as a literary lens was employed. This is an method which asserts that literature is a textual content. A specific construction of language produces reality. This further contains literary interpretation by way of binary opposition (concepts in opposition) and signification (signifier and signified). Through merely looking into and decoding the strains of the brief story ―Dead Stars‖, let’s imagine that the two opposing ideas are NEED and WANT which let’s imagine that these two entities are powerful and supreme. These interpretations of the poem say that: For the sake of reputation, a man will do the things he ought to do even though he does not wholeheartedly like what he must do thus he isn’t residing and constructing a life somewhat he is just living to outlive.