Thoughts on Autumn, Harvard, and the Future of Today’s Students

By Nicholas Alahverdian

Today I’d like to talk about things that are inevitable. Weather is an especially inevitable consequence of living in this great world, and we see things that we are privileged to see. These things may include tornadoes, snowstorms, the foliage of autumn, and many other supernatural beauties of nature.

In the Midwest, I have found it quite disconcerting that there really is no happy medium. I found that it doesn’t really have a transitional period. Between summer and autumn it has just gone from wicked warm to pretty cold in just a few short days.

Usually in places that I’ve lived such as New England and New York and even Utah, there are transitional periods where one is allowed to become acclimated to the seasons and the transition periods thereof. We sort of depend on this as human beings to invite us welcomingly into the next season. We simply don’t expect there to be such a binary approach to weather, where it goes from hot to cold to freezing with no meteorological intermission.
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One or Zero: Polarity in the Life of Sylvia Plath

sylvia plath nicholas alahverdian
Sylvia Plath

Existentialists deem the notion of a non-existent god as unsettling and disquieting (Essays in Existentialism 40). Between birth and death, one finds oneself in a constant debate surrounding pre-life and post-life experiences. The implications of finality in experience necessitates a binary conclusion; that is to clearly differentiate good and evil, love and hate, life and death.

It is within life that Sylvia Plath sought death, claiming an interest in occupying the seemingly absent role of deity.  This assertive posture allowed her to think in a deified manner, ultimately perceiving everything as black and white. Plath adopted a binary philosophy in order to stay the curse of death, imagining it as something that could be overcome.

A memorable occasion in Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra conveys the story of Zarathustra’s encounter with the tightrope walker (15).  Upon an impromptu taunt, the tightrope walker is deprived of Continue reading One or Zero: Polarity in the Life of Sylvia Plath