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conflicting perspectives joan of arc and julius caesar

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Module C: Conflicting Perspectives By Elise Mahoney Composers use representation as a means of portraying their particular views or perspectives to a targeted audience to stimulate a response, challenge assumptions or rethink certainties. Representation is a statement or account made to influence one's opinion or action to effect a change. Often composers represent political figures in this way to influence audiences to respond in either a negative or positive way. Joan of Arc and Julius Caesar are examples of this. In the texts 'Joan of Arc: heretic, saint, terrorist', 'The Litany of Saint Joan of Arc' and Julius Caesar we see how composers have used representation to display their particular perspectives on Joan of Arc and Caesar and the language techniques used to shape these views. Joan of Arc the patron saint of France and a national heroine was burnt to death as a witch and four hundred and eighty two years later was canonized a saint. 'Joan of arc: heretic, saint, terrorist' a feature article published on UPI's Religion and Spirituality Forum on January 29 2007, by Ben Daniel explores Joan of Arc's importance to France and whether, if put into a contemporary context, Joan would still be revered as a saint. He questions the ways history has been shaped to blur perspectives of Joan leaving audiences with only a beautified impression of Joan of Arc's life and the so-called piety, patriotism and courage she displayed in her lifetime. ...read more.


Composers may provide a complex antagonistic portrayal of personalities that shock and alarm readers understanding of a particular character, to challenge beliefs and create uncertainty. When looking at the text 'Joan of arc: heretic, saint, terrorist' a completely different perspective of Joan is represented from previous beliefs. Ben Daniel questions Joan's sainthood and makes reference to her as normal every day woman who may have done extraordinary deeds but plants doubt in our minds as to how perfect and 'holy' she truly was. "How can you negotiate with a religious nutcase who disregards international agreements?" This quotation plants that seed of doubt by using a rhetorical question, forcing the audience to rethink certainties that challenge previous assumptions about Joan's Saintly nature. Rhetorical question implies its own answer and is a way of making a point. Ben Daniel's is insidious in his suggestion that Joan worked illegally contradicting our attitude about the pure and valiant saint Joan of Arc. Daniel also uses colloquial language in the word "nutcase" implying that she is eccentric or crazy in his representation of Joan. This perspective of Joan of Arc creates a complexity and uncertainty about Joan of Arc's character and challenges our preconceived ideas from the above representation. Composers use representation as a means to create certainty and confidence when one perspective is provided, confirming preconceived ideas. ...read more.


Repetition is used in the words 'Joan of Arc' and 'model of" to suggest the sacredness of her name and to demonstrate that she was a person of great substance, a model who serves behavioral and social roles for others to follow and emulate. The abstract nouns 'generosity', 'courage' and 'purity' emphasize these role model qualities and provide reason for her sainthood. This illustrates to an audience the importance of this woman. By also repeating her name it continues to bring audiences back to the fact that she was no ordinary woman but Saint Joan of Arc, someone worthy of veneration. This Representation of Joan creates a certainty and confidence in the viewer's previous assumptions and views on Joan of Arc and creates a simple uncomplicated impression. Composers use representation to position, persuade or simple put forward a different perspective. The representation of political figures of our time and through history can and will always be viewed with conflicting perspectives that position and persuade, and composers use this to reshape, support or confirm particular assumptions or perspectives. Joan of Arc and Julius Caesar are examples of this. In the texts 'Joan of Arc: heretic, saint, terrorist', 'The Litany of Saint Joan of Arc' and Julius Caesar we see how language techniques present a particular point of view and convince audiences to empathize, support, question or consider particular personalities, especially those of a political background. Word count: 1,430 ...read more.

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