One of the devices that causes tension in the book is the theme of learning. Mr Watts represents formal Western education; Dolores is the strongest proponent of island “wisdom”. Read pp. 27, 32-33, 35-40, 48, 51-57 and 73-77. Ponder the following: What is Mr Watts’ motivation for these lessons? How do the lessons accelerate the culture clash? What do you think the author is saying about learning?
Tropical islands such as Bougainville are often referred to as “a Paradise on Earth” in tourist guides. Yet the island has been fraught with conflict for years. Read pp. 8, 20, 34, 46, 104-5, 179, 184. Think of the following questions and report back: Matilda’s voice is clinical in her narration of both the horror and the beauty. Why? The beauty of the island is deliberately juxtaposed with the horrific things done by people. Is the author trying to say something here? What?
Pp. 183-188. Cleansing force; renewal. Allows Matilda to escape following the atrocities Circularity with island stories – Matilda learned to swim by her father throwing her in the water Suicidal thoughts – Matilda’s strength “Mr Jaggers” – the log that saves Matilda’s life (intertextuality).
GENERAL TOPICS You can use one of these topics to write about ANY type of extended text (including non-fiction). 1. Readers are often challenged by controversial or difficult issues or ideas. Analyse how an issue or idea in a text you have studied challenged you to alter or develop your ideas. 2. Readers will often think about characters long after a text has been finished. Analyse how the writer made a character or characters memorable for you in a text you have studied. 3. Readers often respond to texts by comparing the time and place in which the text is set with their own society. Analyse how the setting of a text you have studied caused you to examine aspects of your own society. 4. Readers need to make a connection with a text for the reading experience to be satisfactory. Analyse how your experience of reading a text you have studied was either satisfying or unsatisfying. 5. Many writers set out to explore the nature of human experiences, such as love, grief, revenge, or racism. Analyse how a text you have studied explores an aspect of human experience. 6. The structure of a text is important in controlling the rise and fall in tension.Analyse how a text you have studied has been structured to achieve impact.