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Island Man by Grace Nichols Different Cultures – Cluster 1.

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Presentation on theme: "Island Man by Grace Nichols Different Cultures – Cluster 1."— Presentation transcript:

1 Island Man by Grace Nichols Different Cultures – Cluster 1

2 Grace Nichols Born Georgetown, Guyana (Caribbean) 1950 Born Georgetown, Guyana (Caribbean) 1950 Lived in UK since 1977 Lived in UK since 1977 Poet and writer of childrens books Poet and writer of childrens books

3 Island Man by Grace Nichols A man from a Caribbean island now lives and works in London. The poem shows his state of mind in the early morning. A man from a Caribbean island now lives and works in London. The poem shows his state of mind in the early morning. He wakes with the sound of the sea in his head, then prepares himself for the reality of his days work. He wakes with the sound of the sea in his head, then prepares himself for the reality of his days work.

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5 Island Man Lines Morning and island man wakes up to the sound of blue surf in his head the steady breaking and wombing The sea is the source (the womb) of all life on earth rhythms which suggest the movements of the sea

6 Island man Lines wild seabirds and fishermen pushing out to sea the sun surfacing defiantly from the east of his small emerald island he always comes back groggily groggily S and f sounds suggest the sounds of the sea (alliteration / onomatopoeia) Repetitions contribute to the hypnotic rhythm

7 Island man Lines Comes back to sands of a grey metallic soar to surge of wheels to surge of wheels to dull North Circular roar Is the traffic sound soaring (increasing in volume) ?

8 Island man Lines muffling muffling his crumpled pillow waves island man heaves himself Alliteration suggestive of laboured breathing What do these lines mean and how do they relate to others ?

9 Island man Line 19 Another London day London days are all the same: dull, repetitive, mechanical

10 Island Man by Grace Nichols Lines 1 – 5The man wakes up and in his head hears the surf Lines 1 – 5The man wakes up and in his head hears the surf Lines 6 – 11He hears other sea sounds and sees the sun rise, then starts to realise where he is Lines 6 – 11He hears other sea sounds and sees the sun rise, then starts to realise where he is Lines 12 – 15The sounds change to London traffic sounds Lines 12 – 15The sounds change to London traffic sounds Lines 16 – 18He struggles out of bed... Lines 16 – 18He struggles out of bed... Line 19...to face another day in London Line 19...to face another day in London

11 Island Man by Grace Nichols The poem covers only a few minutes in the early morning. It describes the first part of a mans day as he comes to consciousness. The man is not identified except as a stereotype island man. He is a West Indian, living in London. The poem covers only a few minutes in the early morning. It describes the first part of a mans day as he comes to consciousness. The man is not identified except as a stereotype island man. He is a West Indian, living in London. He wakes with the sound of the Caribbean sea in his head (the sound of blue surf). Other sea sounds develop (wild seabirds and fishermen) and he imagines the sun rising. His head begins to clear (groggily groggily). He wakes with the sound of the Caribbean sea in his head (the sound of blue surf). Other sea sounds develop (wild seabirds and fishermen) and he imagines the sun rising. His head begins to clear (groggily groggily). The sea sounds transform into metallic traffic sounds; sand transforms into road surface; blue and emerald turn to grey. The sea sounds transform into metallic traffic sounds; sand transforms into road surface; blue and emerald turn to grey. The only waves are in his crumpled pillow as he heaves himself up to prepare for Another London day. The only waves are in his crumpled pillow as he heaves himself up to prepare for Another London day.

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13 How Island Man is written: 1. Shape and sense 19 lines of different lengths 19 lines of different lengths 5 sections of different lengths 5 sections of different lengths No punctuation apart from 3 sections beginning with capital letters No punctuation apart from 3 sections beginning with capital letters Lines are often, but not always, complete phrases, units of sense Lines are often, but not always, complete phrases, units of sense Sometimes the relationship between lines is ambiguous Sometimes the relationship between lines is ambiguous One line (l.11) is unusually broken One line (l.11) is unusually broken

14 How Island Man is written: 2. Language Much of the poem has rhythms which suggest the movement of the sea, with some long movements and some short, rather gentle and hypnotic. Much of the poem has rhythms which suggest the movement of the sea, with some long movements and some short, rather gentle and hypnotic. Repetitions contribute to the rhythms (comes back/comes back; groggily/ groggily; muffling/muffling) and suggest the hypnotic effects of the seas movement. Repetitions contribute to the rhythms (comes back/comes back; groggily/ groggily; muffling/muffling) and suggest the hypnotic effects of the seas movement. Alliteration is used (sound/surf; seabirds/sea/ sun). In the first half of the poem, sequences of s and f sounds suggest sea sounds. Alliteration is used (sound/surf; seabirds/sea/ sun). In the first half of the poem, sequences of s and f sounds suggest sea sounds. There are only 2 rhymes (soar/roar; sea/defiantly), which seem accidental or natural rhymes. There are only 2 rhymes (soar/roar; sea/defiantly), which seem accidental or natural rhymes. There is some use of colour (blue/emerald/grey) to contrast the brightness of the Caribbean with the dullness of London. There is some use of colour (blue/emerald/grey) to contrast the brightness of the Caribbean with the dullness of London. There are some unusual uses of words (l.5 wombing; l.13 soar). There are some unusual uses of words (l.5 wombing; l.13 soar). The absence of punctuation (and of finite verbs) makes some word sequences ambiguous, particularly l and perhaps l The absence of punctuation (and of finite verbs) makes some word sequences ambiguous, particularly l and perhaps l.6-11.

15 Island Man: questions to consider What contrasts are suggested between the mans life on a Caribbean island and his life in London ? What contrasts are suggested between the mans life on a Caribbean island and his life in London ? Why is he living in London ? Why is he living in London ? Why does he remember his home island so vividly ? Why does he remember his home island so vividly ?

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17 Comparisons with themes from other poems Separation from ones homeland Separation from ones homeland (compare Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan Hurricane Hits England) Hurricane Hits England) Living in a different culture Living in a different culture (compare Search for My Tongue Unrelated Incidents Unrelated Incidents Half Caste) Half Caste) Village life Village life (compare Blessing Night of the Scorpion) Night of the Scorpion)


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