Written during a tough period in Hopkin’s life, living in Liverpool.
Inspired by the death of a blacksmith parishioner whom he cared for.
This poem marks the change between his positivity about Nature and God to his dark sonnets.
Physical & Mental Suffering
Felix’s body decays as the four diseases fight to kill him. His mental suffering progresses with his condition, as his “reason rambles”. Felix represents the “black hours” of unimaginable suffering that Hopkins would later go through.
The poem depicts how a “big boned and hardy handsome” man like Felix can be left weaker than a child. The message is that we should not take our health for granted.
Man and God – Felix is a sinner. When he receives communion he becomes “heavenlier”. Christ is our “reprieve and ransom” that saves us from sin and death. We are reminiscent of Christ represented as “chevalier” in The Windhover.
Religious Doubt – This is the mark of change in Hopkins. This is the first time he has doubted his religion, and it is a prologue to the suffering of his terrible sonnets.
Form – Petrarchan rhyme scheme. The first verse discusses Felix’s illness. In the sestet he meditates the meaning of it.
Assonance/Alliteration – “Mould of Man”, “Big boned and hardy handsome”, “Fatal Four”, “Reprieve and Ransom”.
Sound effects are used to create an atmosphere as breezy, carefree and energetic as Spring itself. Assonance & alliteration create this effect. It creates rich, euphonius music.
He uses nouns as verbs to lend a line some curious power. “Leaves.. blooms”
He laments the damage that we are doing to the planet, but believes that nature can never be destroyed.
God & Nature – God’s greatness is evident everywhere in the world. It is an electrical current running through the planet. “It will flame out, like shining from shook foil”. Everything on the planet together displays God’s greatness. Although we persist in damaging the world, we cannot destroy it. The holy ghost protects it.
Man & God – The poem expresses astonishment that the world is no longer aware of God’s presence. Although his grandeur is evident everywhere, we seem oblivious. Due to our advancements in technology, we no longer recognise God as a force in the world. However, despite the fact that we have forgotten him, he has not forgotten us. The Holy ghost still sits lovingly over us and the world.
Form – Petrarchan rhyme scheme.The first verse is negative, but the sestet brings hope of a new dawn.
Imagery – Images of light represent the powerful presence of God. “Shining from shook foil”,”Ah bright wings” He also mentions the rising of the sun. The world has potential for renewal.
Sound effects – The poem has a gentle, soothing musical quality about it. This is due to the assonance and alliteration used. “dearest freshness”, “last lights” This could represent the kindness and gentleness of God.
Internal Rhyme & Repetition – “All is seared with trade, bleared, smeared with toil.” This line has an unpleasant harshness which creates an effect emphasising the relentlessness and monotony of man’s industrial endeavours, and their horrific effects on nature.
There are three sections to the comparative study: Cultural Context, Theme/Issue and Literary Genre.
This is the setting and society of the text. You are expected to discuss aspects of Cultural Context such as: Family Structures, Political Structures, Gender Roles, Race & Religion, Love & Marriage. Few useful questions to ask yourself:
What is valued; money or status?
Who has power, why?
How does society view those who resist social expectations?
How do members of the community relate?
Is work viewed as necessary drudgery or a worth while pursuit?
Are material possessions important?
Attitudes towards the wealthy; Admiration? Envy? Respect?
Attitudes towards the poor; Scorn? Compassion? Pity?
Is love valued as love or as a necessary prelude to marriage?
Is marriage seen as a social advancement?
Choose a theme that is relevant across all three texts. In my case, my themes are Change, Oppression, Hope, and Wealth. In your answer you will discuss one of the following:
Aspects of the theme (+ a tail end question, e.g. how they affected you). E.g. How oppression thrives, how it is defeated, and the effects oppression can have on a character.
OR trace the development of the theme through the texts.
Essentially Literary Genre is about how the story is told. Discuss things such as:
Narrative voice (Who is telling the story?)
Twists in the plot
How To Answer
Every answer you do will essentially be the same, except manipulated the tiniest bit for relevance to your answer. For this reason, practice is essential, and mind maps are fantastic. Timing is an issue you may have to practice, making answers as clear and concise as possible. Quality, not quantity.
For clarity and relevance I will be basing this layout on the 2011 question:
“A reader’s view of a theme or issue can be either changed or reinforced through interaction with texts.” Compare the extent to which your understanding of the theme or issue was changed or reinforced through your interaction with the texts on your course.
Name the texts you’ve studied, give them abbreviations. Explain the definition of theme/issue. Explain how you will structure your answer.
The theme of a text is essentially the fundamental message and backbone of the text. The texts I have studied are Purple Hibiscus by Chimamande Ngozi Adichie, “PH”, Children of Men by Alfonso Cuaron, “CoM”, and Sive, by John Keane, “S”. There are a range of themes which are strikingly relevant across each of the texts such as _______. However, the theme which stood out to me due to its dynamic principles and varying interaction levels was wealth. My understanding of wealth was changed frequently throughout my interaction with the texts, and I learned several valuable lessons in this regard. In this essay, I intend to discuss how wealth can influence a character, the means in which the wealthy express their wealth, the stark inequality in terms of distribution of wealth, the evil connotations wealth often holds, and how my interactions with the text influenced my view of these aspects of the theme.
As a rule of thumb, you should aim for three points in the main body. Three long paragraphs. Within each paragraph you should be discussing all texts at the same time. (See keywords to use at the bottom of this post). Topic sentences are extremelyimportant.
My view of wealth was greatly influenced when I witnessed the startling differences in affluence between characters. In “P.H”, I was stunned similarly to Kambili when she visits her cousins who live in poverty stricken conditions. At home, she had become accustomed to “persian rugs on stretches of gleaming marble”, “large compound walls” and “frangipani trees”. It is no surprise, therefore, that she is shocked by the poverty her cousins live in. *Insert relevant quotes about her shock and the conditions.* Immediately shattered my previous view of wealth; that of an equal and fair aspect in everyday life. “P.H” was mirrored by “C.o.M” in this regard. Similarly to Kambili and Amaka, Theo and Nigel are both cousins. Despite this fact, they too differ substantially in terms of wealth. Due to his cynical nature, Theo, in contrast to Kambili, is not quite as taken aback. Theo’s poverty is highlighted when *key moment*. From my previous interaction with “PH”, I expected a similar response to that of Kambili’s when he witnessed the *quote about Nigel’s wealth*.
Theo’s calm and slightly mocking approach aroused my interest and changed my view of wealth once again. Not only did it reinforce my outrage at the infuriating inequality of wealth, it also conveyed to me that there are more important things than wealth in one’s life. Thankfully “S” does not display such inequality. Perhaps not preferable, there exists a shared poverty among the community, with the exception of Seán Dóta. This is revealed when *key moment*.
As you can see I try to stick to the question as much as possible, and also refer to the three texts, weaving them into one discussion.
Length is not important in a conclusion. It is important that you give a brief summary of what you did, as this is the last part the corrector reads before marking you. Short and sweet is the trick.
In conclusion, I can honestly say that my view and understanding of wealth was significantly influenced by my interaction with each of my texts, especially when viewed side by side. I understand now that despite the influence wealth can have on people, there are still people with the integrity and self respect to overcome this. *Reiterate points*
Topic Sentences are essential.
Use keywords for comparisons: Similarly, in contrast to, this is mirrored, reflected, reinforced, despite, alternatively.
The number of comparisons is irrelevant. It is about the quality of your points and your relevance to the question.
Be consistent: If you answer on three texts in the first point, do so in all three.
Refer to the question.
Cultural Context example – 2009 paper
“The main characters in texts are often in conflict with the world or culture they inhabit” In the light of the above statement, compare how the main characters interact with the cultural contexts of the texts you have studied.
The cultural context of a text is the world and society of the texts. The texts I have studied are Purple Hibiscus by Chimamande Ngozi Adichie, “PH”, Children of Men by Alfonso Cuaron, “CoM”, and Sive, by John Keane, “S”. It is fascinating to me that, despite the vast contrast in cultural contexts between 1960’s Nigeria, 1950’s Ireland and 2037’s London, there are still some striking similarities in the characters’ interactions with their respective cultural contexts. There are several aspects of cultural context that are relevant across all of the texts, including wealth, gender roles, family structures, political structures, and love. In this essay, I intend to compare how the characters of my studied texts interact with their cultural context, in particular the issues of wealth, gender roles, and family structures.
I was intrigued by the family structures in each of the texts, especially when viewed in relation to one another. “PH” presents us with a nuclear family – Eugene, Beatrice, Jaja and Kambili. “S” and “C.o.M” contrast this strongly – Sive having a fractured family unit with her grandmother, uncle and aunt, while Theo, with no immediate family, forms a family unit with Miriam and Kee. One would assume that Kambili is the advantaged one in this respect, but this is not the case. It is revealed that her family, although appearing close from the outside, is in fact distant than the two makeshift families. This distance is conveyed in the key moment when *key moment*. Kambili is a ware of this distance, and acts accordingly. When she visits her cousins, who have a happier and closer family unit, she is very eager to stay. She was very much in conflict with her own cultural context. Adversely, Sive is very close to her grandmother. Their relationship is similar to that between Theo and Kee; Theo and Nana are protectors of the vulnerable – Sive and Kee. Her closeness with her grandmother is formed through their shared hatred of Mena, conveyed in *key moment*. It can be argued that Nana and Theo, due to their conflict with their lack of family, have resolved to protect those they care for, and form family units.
In conclusion, I believe the interactions of the characters were to a large extent very similar and predictable. The cultural contexts imposed on them was not ideal, and they were often in conflict with the limitations of their cultures. *Short summary of points*
Structure: Say what you’re going to say, say it, say what you’ve said.
Use topic sentences.
N.B. Try and figure out the coding system the corrector will use. In this case it would have been “C” (Compare) and “I” (interact). In each paragraph, the corrector will look for these, and you will be penalised if your answer is not relevant to these codes.
To carry out flame tests with salts of lithium, sodium, potassium, barium, strontium and copper.
Light a bunsen burner and adjust it to obtain a blue flame.
Dip the wooden splint in water and add one of the salt to it so it sticks on.
Place the wooden splint over the flame to observe the colour of the flame.
After the salt has finished burning put the flame out and take note of the colour.
Repeat this for all the different salts.
Lithium – Deep red
Sodium – Yellow
Potassium – Lilac
Barium – Green
Strontium – Red
Copper – Blue-Green
As the excited electrons fall to the ground state, they release energy in the form of light which gives each metal salts their characteristic colour.
To determine the metal salt of an unknown substance compare the colour of the flame with a known salt.
To prevent cross contamination use separate wooden splints.
Uses: These salts are used in fireworks to release flares of different colours.
Aaron Keller, Chemistry Teacher, demonstrates the different colours that can be produced in a flame by the use of different metallic salts. When ions of the metallic elements in each salt are heated their electrons become excited. Excited electrons drop back down to lower energy levels and release light of very specific colours in the process. This makes for a beautiful demonstration and colourful fireworks.
To understand the arrangement of electrons in atoms, Neils Bohor understood the spectra. When white light (eg. sunlight or light from an ordinary electric light bulb) is passed through a prism, the white light is broken up into many different colours. This called a continuous spectrum. But when Bohor carried out this experiment with a hydrogen discharge tube (a glass tube filed with hydrogen at low pressure through which an electric current is passed) instead of white light, he found that instead of seeing a continuous spectrum, he saw a series of narrow lines. These lines are called line spectrum. Since the light emitted when an electric current is passed through hydrogen, the spectrum is more accurately called an emission line spectrum. Each elements produce a different line spectra unique to each other.
A line spectrum is a series of colored lines against a dark background.
Studying the spectra, scientists have also found that atoms can absorb light.The absorption spectrum consists of series of dark lines. These dark lines are exactly the same wavelengths as the coloured lines in the emission spectrum of the element.
The absorption spectrum of an element is the spectrum that is observed after white light has been passed through the element.
Bohr’s model of the atom
Neils Bohr put forward a theory of the hydrogen atom. He stated that:
Electrons revolve around the nucleus in fixed paths called orbits.
Electrons in any one orbit have a fixed amount of energy values (energy levels). Associated with each energy level is an interger , n, called the principal quantum number.
As long as an electron is in any one particular energy level, it doesn’t gain or lose energy.
When an atom absorbs energy, electrons jump from a lower energy level to a higher energy level. Electrons are less stable in the higher energy levels and do not remain there for long.
Energy is lost when an electron falls from a higher energy level to a lower energy level. Since an electron can only fall back to certains definite energy levels, only fixed amounts of light energy can be given off.
An energy level is a fixed energy value that an electron in an atom may have.
Measure relative atomic masses and relative molecular masses.
Identify unknown compounds.
Five stages of the spectrometer
Vaporisation. The sample is injected as a gas, or as a liquid that is heated to vaporise it.
Ionisation. An electron gun forms positive ions by bombarding the atoms with high-energy electrons which knock electrons off.
Acceleration. The positive ions produces pass between a series of negatively charged plates. These plates accelerate these positive ions to high speeds.
Separation. An electromagnet deflects ions towards the detector. The lighter ions are deflected the most.
Detection. The detector responds to the ions that hit it and produces a signal that corresponds to the number of ions. A computer converts both measurements into a spectrum on a paper recorder. The series of peaks is called a mass spectrum.
Theorem: A general proposition not self-evident but proved by a chain of reasoning; a truth established by means of accepted truths.
1. Vertically opposite angles are equal in measure.
2. In an isosceles triangle the angles opposite the equal sides are equal. Conversely, if two angles are equal, then the triangle is isosceles.
3. If a transversal makes equal alternate angles on two lines then the lines are parallel. Conversely, if two lines are parallel, then any transversal will make equal alternate angles with them.
4.* The angles in any triangle add to 180.
5. Two lines are parallel if, and only if, for any transversal, the corresponding angles are equal.
6.* Each exterior angle of a triangle is equal to the sum of the interior opposite angles.
7. The angle opposite the greater of two sides is greater than the angles opposite the lesser. Conversely, the side opposite the greater of two angles is greater than the side opposite the lesser angle.
8. Two sides of a triangle are together greater than the third.
9.* In a parallelogram, opposite sides are equal, and opposite angles are equal. Conversely, (1) if the opposite angles of a convex quadrilateral are equal, then it is a parallelogram; (2) if the opposite sides of a convex quadrilateral are equal, then it is a parallelogram. (Corollary 1)
10. The diagonals of a parallelogram bisect each other. Conversely, if the diagonals of a quadrilateral bisect one another, then the quadrilateral is a parallelogram.
11.* If three parallel lines cut off equal segments on some transversal line, then they will cut off equal segments on any other transversal.
12.* Let ABC be a triangle. If a line l is parallel to BC and cuts [AB] in the ratio m:n, then it also cuts [AC] in the same ratio. Conversely, if the sides of two triangles are in proportion, then the two triangles are similar.
13.* If two triangles are similar, then their sides are proportional, in order (and converse).
14.* [Theorem of Pythagoras] In a right-angled triangle the square of the hypotenuse is the sum of the squares of the other two sides.
15. [Converse to Pythagoras]. If the square of one side of a triangle is the sum of the squares of the other two, then the angle opposite the first side is a right angle.
16. For a triangle, base x height does not depend on the choice of base.
17. A diagonal of a parallelogram bisects the area.
18. The area of a parallelogram is the base x height.
19. * The angle at the centre of a circle standing on a given arc is twice the angle at any point of the circle standing on the same arc. (Corollary 2-5)
20. (i) Each tangent is perpendicular to the radius that goes to the point of contact.
(ii) If P lies on the circle S, and a line l is perpendicular to the radius to P, then l is a tangent to S. (Corollary 6)
21. (i) The perpendicular from the centre to a chord bisects the chord.
(ii) The perpendicular bisector of a chord passes through the centre.