Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Passages for deeper analysis from Chapters 5-6 of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Iannis Metaxas - Prime Minister April -August 1936 and dictator of Greece from August 1936 until his death in January 1941.
As a student of English Literature moving A2 you need to sharpen your analytical reading skills by practising on brief passages; this will enable you to analyse broader passages and chapters more skilfully on your own.
Where appropriate you could analyse the passages for any of the following:

Narrative viewpoint and voice: the attitude(s) of the narrator/speaker and direct and reported speech.

Tone – and whether the narrator is emotive, objective, reflective, judgemental, etc.

Intrusive narrating – whether de Bernieres is giving his opinions and ideas about a character, event, etc.

imagery: explore its deeper meanings.

Dialogue and description – how used and the balance between the two.

Language and its purpose, i.e. irony, for humour, to impress, to reflect mood, etc.

• Themes or ideas and how these are explored.

How characters are developed or remain flat.

The use of style – whether the passage is active or passive and the meanings you can deduce from that.

Other stylistic devices such as syntax (sentence construction) repetition, rhetorical questions, motifs, foregrounding, references to other texts, etc.

Structural devices such as parallel narratives, charactisation, etc.

Form and historical fiction and how passages/chapters relate the attitudes, behaviour, culture and history of the past – but from a modern vantage point of 1993!

Passages for practicing your skills ( in pairs or on your own )

1. Chapter 5, page 33: “ He remembered . . . to the top of page 34, “ . . . an absurd little man”.
2. Chapter 5, page 34: “But I have done my best” to “ . . .evil times have passed”.
3. Chapter 5, bottom of page 34: “Was it not a form of irony” to page 35 “ . . .every subversive fart in Greece”.
4. Chapter 6, page 37: “ I, Carlo Guercio” to “ . . . my mother’s womb”.
5. Chapter 6, page 39: “We were all young together” to “ . . . against people who fought like gods.
6. Chapter 6, bottom of page 39: “ I am not a cynic” to “ Page 40 “ . . . make me sad”.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Try an English quiz to learn key terms for novels and prose

What a great website for for making English seem like fun!  And you're learning at the same time!

Try the scatter game first to see what you know.

You need to drag the term over its answer to make them disappear. It's timed, too!

Quiz 1 English terms
Quiz 2 More English Terms
Quiz 3 Reading and Literature  (more challenging)

Thursday, 17 June 2010

A recent article on the massacre of the Italians in Cephalonia

The novel is, of course, based on real events as well as fictional characters.

The Trailer for the film version of Captain Corelli's Mandolin

If you keep in mind that the film is Hollywood fluff and not true to the novel this trailer is not that bad. But the love-making part is pure Hollywood, so don't get taken in by that bit!

Russell Watson sings Pelagia's song. Notice also the speech about love by Doctor Iannis. This is faithfully rendered from the text in the chapter where the Doctor advises his daughter.

Monday, 14 June 2010

Structure and Narration in "The Great Gatsby"

This is good stuff! The webpage deals with the novel's structural devices. (AO2).
It is also an example of a structural approach (AO3) to reading the text. (Under other readers/readings).

And, "The Ordering of Events" ( more on structure - again, excellent work from this French source.)

New assessment objectives for "Captain Corelli's Mandolin"

Remember that the  asssessment objectives for the new English Literature course have changed. The material on this blog relates to the old assessment criteria. That does not mean that much of the material is no longer relevant - you just need to be aware that there are now FOUR assessment objectives rather than Five as before 2008.

Simply adapt the new AO as you read as follows:

AO1 is for your written response and for using appropriate literary terms. ( the same as before 2008) 10 marks.

AO2 is for analysing language form and structure (again the same as before 2008) 10 marks.

AO3 is for exploring connections and comparisons between texts, informed by interpretation by other readers. 20 marks. ( This has changed but you still need to focus on specific passages which can be compared between the texts you studied and then consider how your connections and comparisons might be interpreted by you and other readers, such a feminists, gay, marxist, genre, pyschoanalytical, etc.)

AO4 is about showing your understanding of the significance and influence of the contexts (times) in which your texts were written and received. 20 marks. ( The Great Gatsby was written in 1924 and published in 1925 and Captain Corelli's Mandolin was written around 1993 and  published in 1994. What was happening in the USA when the first text was written and published  and how does this relate to this text, particularly in the passages or chapter(s) that you are writing about? What was happening in Europe and the Balkans when CCM was published? How does this relate to the chapter or passage your are exploring for your question? How was each text received when it was published and by what types of readers? How do readers receive each text today?

Tie these points to the chapters or passages that you select to help you answer the question.

About Me

I teach Film, Media and English Lit.