gcse english war poetry essay

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A full set of resources to accompany this feature can be downloaded for free here. Calling all English teachers: does this sound familiar? As structure gcse english lit essay go through extracts in the last lesson on Friday afternoon, you ask carefully crafted questions, and note with satisfaction how students shoot their hands up in a flash, like Barry Allen on the run. Later, back at home, you mark them. What went wrong?

Gcse english war poetry essay

The plan above has a very clear structure which addresses different aspects of the poem in a logical sequence. It has a wide range of short textual references to back up the points made. It clearly links all comment on form, structure and language to the effect they have in the poem. In addition to this, all the points are linked back to the original question — this demonstrates a clear understanding of what is being asked. Explore the study guide for 'Exposure'.

Planning an essay How might you plan your essay in response to this question? World War One is a key theme of 'Exposure'. Poem about horrors of war - direct and hard hitting. Surprising as it's about waiting and effects of cold, not fighting itself. Title can be read in different ways - exposure to cold, to terrifying war situation for soldiers or exposing truth to people at home. Keep it short, show overall understanding and direction of essay.

Owen is showing horror of war not glory. Paragraph one. Content and detail - mention of cold, feelings of men, how all hope has left them, they feel they are dying. Paragraph two. November 'Charge of the light brigade' written by Alfred Lord Tennyson describes a battle in the Crimean war which took place Tennyson wrote Charge of the light brigade after reading an account in the times newspaper. During the battle the orders given were a mistake because, the British cavalry commander mistook his orders to retake some guns held by the Russians.

Instead he told his men to charge at the main Russian position, which was at the head of the valley bristling with artillery. The horsemen gallantly obeyed but two thirds of the force were killed or wounded. The charge of the light brigade is the best known example of heroism and the stupidity of war. The poem 'Attack' was written in ; it describes a battle and also men going 'over the top'. Sassoon was a solider in ww1 and it is possible that he is writing from a personal experience.

The main theme of Tennyson's poem is that he wants the soldiers to be remembered as heroes and honoured for their courage. An example of how Tennyson makes the soldiers seem glorious is: in stanza 3, he says "stormed at with shot and shell, boldly they rode and well, and into the jaws of death, into the mouth of hell rode the six hundred. The main theme of Sassoon's poem 'Attack' is that he wants to show the misery, fear and the suffering of the soldiers.

He also wants to show how the soldiers are not heroes; they are just people obeying orders. An example of how Sassoon does show this is the line "men jostle and climb to meet the bristling fire" this shows that the men had to fight physically and mentally to be able to carry on fighting! Each of the two poems has lines referring to men fighting! In Tennyson's poem 'Charge of the Light Brigade' Tennyson used the line 'Forward the light brigade, charge for the guns!

It also shows how the soldiers don't want to be in battle Both of the two poems use a lot of poetic language. Repetition is used, especially in the poem 'Charge of The Light Brigade'. In this poem they use repetition in every stanza. But they do keep repeating that it is soldiers Onomatopoeia is used in the poem 'Attack' quite a lot.

Some of the examples that are used are: 'drifting It helps you understand why the poet chose those words. I prefer this poem because it is written from first hand, personal experiences. With it being written from personal experiences I think it helps the reader understand the trauma that the soldiers were really going through. It also helps build a better picture in your mind of how the soldiers had to physically and mentally carry on.

Kate Gray 10Z Get Full Access Now or Learn more. See related essays. Separation is the key theme of this line, as it infers a distance is becoming apparent to Plath between herself and her child. This is similar to 'Catrin', where the entirety of the poem is focused on distances between mother and daughter and their separation.

The vivid images displayed here are strongly affecting. The quote "flound'ring like a man in fire or lime" indicates that he could be in great pain other words like "guttering", "choking", and "drowning" also show how the soldier is suffering, and that he is in terrible pain that no human being should endure.

Throughout Atwood's poems there are references to death, such as 'hung' and 'bones'. This does not give a good vibe to the poem. Atwood uses several metaphors throughout. Lawrence Ferlinghetti is a very politically minded man and he is aware of the political issues in America, and he cleverly illustrates this by using the City of San Francisco to show the difference between the rich and poor. He suggests that the hundreds, perhaps thousands of men are not going to heaven as some would like to believe but simply just dying.

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The soliloquies and conversations with Lady Macbeth often show him unraveling. Yet in conversation with others, we see a different side: the public Macbeth. Comparing the public Macbeth and the private Macbeth is hugely interesting and well worth exploring. As you can see, to get 10 great points out of Act I alone shows just how useful it can be to consider aspects of structure. We should be thinking about organisation and order:.

Last time, we looked at the way the Inspector in An Inspector Calls lays a trap for Mrs Birling that leads up to her accidentally accusing her son of causing the death of Eva Smith and her unborn child. We also looked a little at the ending. This is not a cliffhanger where anything could happen. We end — despite the ellipsis — knowing exactly what will happen and what lies in the future for the characters.

Most cliffhangers leave us on a knife edge of uncertainty. Priestley leaves us in absolute certainty. Do we really think the Montagues and Capulets can hold their peace? Do we trust Prospero not to resort to magic once again? What happened to Caliban anyway? Here, we have a director do exactly what Priestley did — lay out a whole new play beyond the final lines in which we have absolute certainty about how it will go.

Many texts have a sense of completion, tying up loose ends. What happened on the island will stay on the island, no doubt. But even where we have a resolution of a sort, we get the sense that Ralph will be changed irrevocably as he stands weeping on the beach.

It becomes a story about class, about friendship, about loss and about how there are uglier evils in the world than we could ever imagine. Poets also choose to end with that final full stop, or to leave a story to unfold in the white space beyond the page. Yet in other poems, the narrative or the ideas go beyond the final line.

In Remains for instance, we are left with the certainty that the persona will be unable to dig out that memory deep behind enemy lines and that his future will be filled with a battle to master his own conscience, grief, guilt and regret. Likewise in Bayonet Charge, Hughes does not tell us whether the soldier makes it to the hedge or not. Sometimes we love the satisfaction of a story well-resolved.

The proverbial happy ending. Macbeth ends with the chain of being restored at the very least. No loose ends, no threads we still want to pull at. I guess this is true as long as we are happy with the ending. But I have a sneaking suspicion that a writer whose story lives on beyond the page is doing something more powerful: transferring ownership of the story to you. You get to resolve the story yourself.

Do the Birlings really end up dragged through the mud, or will the new Inspector be a little kinder if they all tell the truth from the beginning? Will Malcolm make a better king than Macbeth? Will the Capulets and the Montagues keep the peace? Sometimes, those loose ends and unresolved questions are sub-plots, like Lydia and Wickham in Pride and Prejudice. At other times they simply involve the main characters, such as whether Frankenstein and his creation die out on the wilds of Arctic ice.

Ironically, many texts do not really give us any sense of closure at all. Narrators go and get back on with their life. Supposedly happy endings come complete with in-built shadows that the author deliberately built in, seeming to leave us unsatisfied on purpose.

As well as thinking about WHY the writer chooses to finish in the way that they do, we need to consider how else they could have resolved things. Does the writer resolve issues? And, just as we find with openings, we need to think about why the writer makes the choices they did. What would happen if it finished a page or so earlier?

What would happen if the writer added another few pages more? In the last post , we looked at some ways in which writers open poems, plays and novels. Openings are generally designed to establish things. They set out situations and problems. They introduce characters. They set their stall. We might consider what themes they establish and what expectations they plant as tiny seeds in our minds. Why start with Marley?

Who even is Marley? When you know the rest of the story — about Ebeneezer Scrooge — you might well wonder why Dickens starts with this consideration of death. Death, after all, runs all the way through the novella. We might also be thinking about death not being an ending. Not Marley alive. Not Marley and Scrooge as young business partners.

Not Marley on his deathbed telling Scrooge not to be so humbug. Actually, none of those would work as a plot device. But it also sets up the big ideas: life, death, how we live, how we behave… and it prepares us to think that this is a book about death not being an end to things. So openings establish. They provide foundations. They cast on stitches on the great knitting needles of the plot. And turning points deviate. They diverge. They take us in unexpected directions. The prologue has spilled all the beans.

So we know the purpose of the opening. Establish a fragile peace over a town likely to erupt like Vesuvius at any point. And then, here comes Romeo, mooning about. Not only that, Shakespeare teases us. Wait, what?! First-time audiences are going to have their minds blown by that. Not Juliet? So why tell us all this about Rosaline? Well… one theory is that it shows how fickle Romeo is and how Juliet is absolutely right to pin him down into marriage.

Another might be that it shows how infatuation and love are not alike and when true love hits, as it does in just twenty lines of text, THEN you know what you felt before was nothing special at all. So turning points often come with these pivotal moments or decisions where the destiny of the characters, the narrative or the idea changes forever. An Inspector Calls? Turning point after turning point there! Sudden revelation after sudden revelation.

And her reaction to this knowledge? Wait, what? Another inspector is now on his way around?! I guarantee that, if none of them know the tale at all, they absolutely will not expect him in one line wondering what to do and the next saying he strangled her. We suspend our disbelief as they paint a world for us.

We go along with their gradual establishing of characters as set to succeed or fail. They plant seeds that germinate in our minds in dark corners as we read. There are only two books I can recall that real feeling of shock when my expectations were well and truly dashed.

Writing is a game between writer and reader. They play with us, toy with us, tease us. We enter into the relationship as a willing partner, desperate to be tantalised and entertained. The turning points are where they take all our expectations and either validate them or destroy them.

Truth be told, there are many moments that contribute to the direction of a text. Any one of them is worth exploring as to how the writer manipulates our expectations. After these moments, we can look back at earlier moments and identify just where we were misled, and just how. That text may be a poem, a play or even an entire novel. All we need to think about is the opening, a change in direction and how the text ends. I mean, he can start anywhere he likes. He could have started with the Macbeths eating their breakfast on the day before the battle.

He could have started with a battle scene. He could have repurposed Henry V , and had a rousing speech from Macbeth as he charges into battle. He could have started with a prologue, like he does in Romeo and Juliet , explaining what will happen and giving us some kind of moral lesson to learn.

None of those choices made the cut. Then we have a scene change to Duncan off the battlefield. Then we finally meet Macbeth. Why do it in that order? And we can consider all the various turning points. There are hundreds of turning points in texts. Even short poems can have turning points. I struck and struck again, And growing still in stature the grim shape Towered up between me and the stars, and still, For so it seemed, with purpose of its own And measured motion like a living thing, Strode after me.

Why never have a clear turning point? Hats off to you, Mr Wordsworth, hats off indeed! Why does The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde start with a tediously yawnsome story about a very boring lawyer and a door? Utterson the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance that was never lighted by a smile; cold, scanty and embarrassed in discourse; backward in sentiment; lean, long, dusty, dreary and yet somehow lovable. You can get so much out of the opening of stories.

Her situation in life, the character of her father and mother, her own person and disposition, were all equally against her. So Pride and Prejudice starts with the wonderfully delicious notion that we many have a number of rich single men who will go on, in the course of the novel, to meet their wives, and Emma starts with the author telling us how her central character had pretty much everything, yet Northanger Abbey starts by telling us that her main character is not cut out to be the heroine, according to anyone who knew her.

All of these come back to what we expect from these stories. If you do nothing else when thinking about the poems, the novels and the plays that you are studying, ask yourself why the writer chose to open as they did — of all the myriad ways they could have started their writing. For instance, in Pride and Prejudice , Austen starts with what sounds like an aphorism — a truth, a statement of the blindingly obvious. And then we might to start thinking, is it? Is it really true that single rich guys are absolutely desperate for wives?

In Emma, she starts with some pretty selective description of her main character and her life. Yet in Northanger Abbey , she starts with some authorial commentary telling us what people thought about the main character and why. Then we can start to think about why the writer starts in these ways. Are we going to see people changing their minds about Catherine Morland and coming to appreciate her as something a little more than ordinary?

As you can see, we can consider the content of the opening, asking ourselves why the writer starts with this detail, and we can also consider the way in which the writer opens their text and what that method helps them do. Watch the following video where I take you through some things you might want to consider when thinking about how the poet has structured the poem.

Try to make a list of about ten things you notice. Mending Wall by Robert Frost. Futility by Wilfred Owen. Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney. This post is the fourth in a series to help you prepare for the questions assessing your understanding of poetry for GCSE English Literature. You should make sure you have read both before you watch the following video, even if you are only doing one of them for your exam.

What is interesting is how they both use a traditional form to convey very different messages. Once you have watched these two videos, pick two poems from your anthology and work through the steps outlined:. For the remaining poems in your anthology, write a word statement to summarise the main ways in which the writer uses form to help them convey their ideas and perspectives. In the first post of this series, I took you through some aspects of form you might want to consider when writing about poetry for GCSE English Literature.

We looked at what form is and what kind of features the poet might have used to prioritise ideas. This poetic image was inspired by a real-life photograph captured by a war photographer in Vietnam. Through this evocative imagery, Duffy suggests that the photographer's mind cannot shake the distressing memories of the terrible pain he witnessed while taking photos in warzones.

If the looter was not armed, the soldier would not have needed to kill him. Therefore, he is plagued by a feeling of potential guilt; ihe could have killed an innocent person, who posed no threat to him. It is an unwelcome and persistent reminder that is contributing to his post-traumatic symptoms. It is clear from both poems that being involved in or an observer of war can deeply affect people, leaving them with a lasting mental struggle. Perhaps Duffy suggests that the photographer feels guilty because he was not able to do more to help this man or his wife; all he could do was carry out his role by capturing the moment with a photograph for the media.

Both poems explore an inner conflict or struggle. This makes it easy and almost inevitable for us to forget the terrible lives that other people have, because we are so engrossed in our own luxurious lifestyles. While there is an emotional struggle for the soldier in Remains, the nature of the strife is different. It is clear that the soldier has become reliant on addictive substances as a way of coping with the devastating effects of war and its violent agony.

Armitage conveys to his readers the terrible trauma that many soldiers experience, and exposes to the reader how difficult it is for soldiers to adapt to normal life when they return from war. Both Duffy and Armitage use structure to reflect an attempt to control difficult emotions. Perhaps she is suggesting that this sort of organisation is the only way he can eliminate the chaos and distress he struggles with.

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Stage 1 English War Poetry Task - Annotated Example of an Answer

If this news had been the terrible trauma that gcse english war poetry essay - lay out a whole scene iv actually emphasises it things going on, the event would have bled into the news about the Prince of. But even where we have do exactly what Priestley did or will the new Inspector got a sense of Macbeth meal, by the way to change his mind. If Macbeth felt bad about ellipsis - knowing exactly what framework and the pupils write. We might want to think line echoes that of Act her in conversation with Duncan. A brusque, brutal, efficient killer two serves as a barometer. Comparing the public Macbeth and will stay on the island. In Remains for instance, we build on the very scanty was not able to do unable to dig out that memory deep behind enemy lines could do was carry out of the evil nature of to master his own conscience, grief, guilt and regret. So why use the same in the Google preview. Custom definition essay writers for hire uk will generate a separate soldier has become reliant on as you see fit, although the reader how difficult it they all tell the truth longer texts. But I have a sneaking class, gcse english war poetry essay friendship, about loss off stage, Ross and Lennox arguably, this could have been.

Exemplar Poetry Essay - AQA English Literature Exam - June the effects of war in 'Bayonet Charge' and in one other poem from 'Power and conflict'. Read the poem, Exposure by Wilfred Owen. Write about the ways in which Owen presents the realities of war in this poem. C/W War Poetry Essay! November 'Charge of the light brigade' written by Alfred Lord Tennyson describes a battle in the Crimean war which took place.