Posted: August 29th, 2013
Part one: identifying big ideas in the passage:
I am already far north of London; and as I walk in the streets of Petersburgh, I feel a cold northern breeze play upon my cheeks, which braces my nerves, and fills me with delight. Do you understand this feeling? This breeze, which has traveled from the regions towards which I am advancing, gives me a foretaste of those icy climes. Inspirited by this wind of promise, my day dreams become more fervent and vivid. I try in vain to be persuaded that the pole is the seat of frost and desolation, it ever presents itself to my imagination as the region of beauty and delight. There, Margaret, the sun is is for ever visible, its broad disk just skirting the horizon, and diffusing a perpetual splendour. There—for with your leave, my sister, I will put some trust in preceding navigators—there snow and frost are banished; and, sailing over a calm sea, we may be wafted to a land surpassing in wonders and in beauty every region hitherto discovered on the habitable globe. Its productions and features may be without example, as the phenomena of the heavenly bodies undoubtedly are in those undiscovered solitudes. What may not be expected in a country of eternal light? I may there discover the wonderous power which attracts the needle; and may regulate a thousand celestial observations, that require only this voyage to render their seeming eccentricities consistent for ever. I shall satiate my ardent curiosity with the sight of a part of the world never before imprinted by the foot of man. These are my enticements, and they are sufficient to conquer all fear of danger or death, and to induce me to commence this laborious voyage with the joy a child feels when he embarks in a little boat, with his holiday mates, on an expedition of discovery up his native river. But supposing all these conjectures to be false, you cannot contest the inestimable benefit which I shall confer on all mankind to the last generation, by discovering a passage near the pole to those countries, to reach which at present so many months are requisite; or by ascertaining the secret of the magnet, which if at all possible, can only be effected by an undertaking such as mine.
These reflections have dispelled the agitation with which I began my letter, and I feel my heart glow with an enthusiasm which elevates me to heaven; for nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose—a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye.
Part one: Literary devices of Big ideas
I feel a cold northern breeze play upon my cheeks is one of the ideas used in the passage, and it is categorized under the literary device of figurative language in the form of personification. The writer uses the language to express his experience of being in a windy atmosphere. The next idea from the passage is in the statement, with the joy a child feels when he boards in a little boat, with his holiday mates, on a journey of discovery up his native river. It also uses the literary device of a figurative speech, but in a different category of a simile.
The writer uses this statement to explain the amount of excitement he would have as he begins his journey of discovery to the extent of comparing it with the joy a child experiences when traveling on a boat for the first time. The third idea from the passage is in the statement, what may not be expected in a country of eternal light? The statement uses a literary device known as a rhetorical question, since the writer addresses the question without expecting an answer. The writer uses the rhetorical question to express how there are no impossibilities in an extraordinary world.
Part three: Thesis paragraphs
The passage involves a writer who expresses his craving for knowledge by using different scenarios to explain his views and thoughts concerning the need to step beyond the limits set in an ordinary environment to an extraordinary world. He attempts in revealing the anticipation experienced towards making that discovery by creating imaginary scenarios in which he describes his experiences of excitement as he attempts exploration in the journey of discovery. In the beginning of the passage, the statement, “I feel a cold northern breeze play upon my cheeks, which braces my nerves, and fills me with delight” has been used by the writer in comparing the experience to what one should expect when entering the extraordinary world of exploration.
The writer introduces readers to his concept by causing them to use their imagination in order for understanding and relating to what he is trying to bring out. Despite the dull and freezing atmosphere in London as described by the writer, he gives the dull scenario some hope by bringing imaginative scenarios where the environment changes to be more vibrant. For example, the statement, “I try in vain to be persuaded that the pole is the seat of frost and desolation, it ever presents itself to my imagination as the region of beauty and delight.”
The above statement expresses how the writer searches for hope in a dull atmosphere through imagination. The writer continues by expressing his idea of imagination to the audience in order to make them understand the basis of his excitement. For example, the statement, “What may not be expected in a country of eternal light?” is a rhetorical question, which the writer uses to bring the imagination to the audience. He attempts to persuade the audience on the excitement involved in wanting to discover new things in an extraordinary world that is not defined by the usual boundaries like the normal environment.
The writer uses the imagination scenario whereby he is able to discover a path in which human beings can easily travel to space. He expresses how the explorative experience and achievement makes him feel very happy. The statement, “with the joy a child feels when he boards in a little boat” has been used by the writer as a simile in comparing the high level of excitement of a child to the joy he experiences in the imagination of making such a discovery.
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