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Mockingjay - By Suzanne Collins - The New York Times

Peter Stillman is another character in City of Glass with many doubles. First of all, there are two actual Peter Stillmans: a father and his son share the name. Quinn also sees the younger Peter Stillman as a stand-in for his own lost son, which in turn links him with "Auster's" son Daniel. The older Peter Stillman also has a Doppelganger in the train station: when he goes to the station to begin his tail of Stillman, Quinn is forced to choose between two old men getting off the same train who look exactly alike except for their attire. One man is shabbily dressed and carrying a battered old leather satchel and the other is wearing a fashionable suit and has an expensive new leather briefcase. Either one of them could be Stillman, depending on how he fared in the mental hospital to which he has been confined for the last fifteen years. At this point Quinn is confronted with the first of the many arbitrary choices that he will be forced to make during the course of the narrative. This arbitrariness reinforces the idea that there is some one else in control of the story: like Schroedinger's quantum cat which is both dead and alive until it is viewed, either of these old men is Stillman until Quinn makes his arbitrary decision and names one of them as his suspect. And even though many of the later "facts" encountered in the narrative suggest that his choice was correct, we are never completely sure. Like Quinn himself, we have no idea who Peter Stillman really is—either of them.

PhD Degree - Computer Science, The University of York

The heart of Ghosts is in a passage on pages 201-2, in which Blue is mulling over his situation—which is that of being forced to do nothing: "They have trapped Blue into doing nothing, into being so inactive as to reduce his life to almost no life at all. He feels like a man who has been condemned to sit in a room and go on reading a book for the rest of his life" (NYT 201-2). This is what he has become: he is "only half-alive at best, seeing the world only through words, living only through the lives of others" (NYT 202). Like the inactive reader of a conventionally structured novel, Blue no longer has any experiences that are truly his own; all that happens to him is a secondary reflection of Black's actions. Black has put him into a box, whose role here as a manipulator of people in an artificial environment of his making is closely akin to that of an author.

York University Thesis And Dissertation

University of York Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) 2017 …

What makes this section most interesting is the question of "why would a man like Don Quixote disrupt his tranquil life to engage in such an elaborate hoax" (NYT 119). In "Auster's" opinion,

One of the key incidents in the trilogy in terms of exploring the relationship between the author, the characters, and the readers, comes when Quinn goes to "Paul Auster's" apartment and they end up discussing "Auster's" article on Don Quixote. "Auster's" idea is that there are four authors in the text, each of whom is the author of one layer, but who is in turn controlled by the author above him. It cannot be Don Quixote, because it is written in third person, so Sancho Panza must be the author, "since he is the only one who accompanies Don Quixote on all his adventures. But Sancho can neither read nor write" (NYT 118), so there must be another author above him. "Auster" proposes that it is Don Quixote friends, who transcribe Sancho's story, have it translated into Arabic, and then leave it in the market where Cervantes finds it and translates it back into Spanish. "Auster" then postulates that his friends do this in order "to cure Don Quixote of his madness" (NYT 118), so that they are in some sense the authors of the text. But then he hypothesizes that "Don Quixote...was not really mad. He only pretended to be. In fact, he orchestrated the whole thing himself" (NYT 119). So in fact, Don Quixote, despite being the subject of the book, is in fact, through his control of his friends and his manipulation of the text at various points ("Auster" says that it was probably Quixote himself who translated the text back into Spanish from Arabic for Cervantes) the supreme author. Though he has managed to remove himself totally from the text in an authorial way, he is in fact the orchestrator of the events and how they were chronicled.

Thesis and Dissertation - York University

Given the complex question of authorial voice in City of Glass, this passage does not exactly give any clues to the solution, but rather gives us a new angle from which to ask questions about the text, and makes us question our former questions regarding its author and purpose. The novel is supposedly written by Paul Auster, the real-life novelist. But in a curious note at the end of the book after Quinn has escaped from the locked room of the text, the third-person omniscient narrator steps forth and speaks in first person, telling us that he copied the story out of the red notebook that belonged to Quinn, after having received it from "Auster," and that "any inaccuracies should be blamed on me...but I have done my best with it and have refrained from any interpretation" (NYT 158). Like Don Quixote, we are here left without any author of the text. Quinn is ruled out, because he is the subject, and is most likely being manipulated by the elder (and possibly the younger) Peter Stillman, as we see at the end of the book. The story has supposedly been copied straight out of the red notebook, but from the descriptions that we have read of what it contains, it is at best an imperfect copy with much added by a secondary author later. But the various Austers are ruled out because it is from Auster that the unnamed narrator receives the text. Again we are left with riddles within riddles wherein the author is lost among the various levels.

One of the first tasks of a researcher is defining the scope of a study, i.e., its area (theme, field) and the amount of information to be included. Narrowing the scope of your thesis can be time-consuming. Paradoxically, the more you limit the scope, the more interesting it becomes. This is because a narrower scope lets you clarify the problem and study it at greater depth, whereas very broad research questions only allow a superficial treatment.

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Thesis Statements | Bethune College - York University

Obviously, whether "Auster" is right or wrong about the author of Don Quixote, this passage suggests that we should not approach texts as riddles to be solved, but rather as "springboard[s] for the imagination" ("An Interview with Paul Auster" 57). Books should make one think, and lead one to self-consciously reorder the world as an act of creation, just as the writer has consciously ordered some sort of reality in the book as a way of "penetrating the world and finding one's place in it" (Moon Palace 170) through art and artistic creation. This is why it is so important for the reader to realize his or her creative role in the text, and write the story for him- or herself so that it provides a new way of seeing the world and understanding one's place in it. If one simply read and believed in whatever the writer said, then the conventions of the novel would take over real life, since, as Auster says, "reality is something we invent" (Personal interview 2). If our blueprints for looking at the world were the conventions of novels, then our reality would become nothing more than an attempt to fit our lives onto those patterns.

Thesis - Duel and Duality: New York, New Journalism

[Fairy tales] are bare-boned narratives, narratives largely devoid of details, yet enormous amounts of information are communicated in a very short space, with very few words. What fairy tales prove, I think, is that it's the reader—or the listener—who actually tells the story to himself. The text is no more than a springboard for the imagination. 'Once upon a time there was a girl who lived with her mother in a house at the edge of a large wood.' You don't know what the girl looks like, you don't know what color the house is, you don't know if the mother is tall or short, fat or thin, you know next to nothing. But the mind won't allow these things to remain blank; it fills in the details itself, it creates images based on its own memories and experiences—which is why these stories resonate so deeply inside us. The listener becomes an active participant in the story. (57)

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Philip Winskill started York Bookbinding in January 2000, following the closure of the York University bindery.
He is an apprentice trained bookbinder with over 37 years experience. He worked for 25 years binding mostly periodicals, monographs, theses and book restoration and repair. He also gained lots of experience on miscellaneous work, such as presentation bindings and boxes to hold special collections.

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