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Not My Business Learning Objectives: 1.Review context 2.Close reading and annotation of the poem 3.Link to Pastor Niemoller’s poem Slide 8 has a link to.

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Presentation on theme: "Not My Business Learning Objectives: 1.Review context 2.Close reading and annotation of the poem 3.Link to Pastor Niemoller’s poem Slide 8 has a link to."— Presentation transcript:

1 Not My Business Learning Objectives: 1.Review context 2.Close reading and annotation of the poem 3.Link to Pastor Niemoller’s poem Slide 8 has a link to a video in the folder about war crimes across history: Must be small or quality suffers

2 Read the poem through again Remind yourself of Akanni, Danladi and Chinwe’s story. This poem has a chorus: “What business of mine is it So long as they don’t take the yam From my savouring mouth?” What is the attitude of the speaker in these lines?

3 Now look at the final stanza What happens here? Does the poem suggest that the speaker in some way deserves what happens to him?

4 They picked Akanni up one morning Beat him soft like clay And stuffed him down the belly Of a waiting jeep. What business of mine is it So long as they don’t take the yam From my savouring mouth? African name Who are ‘they’? How does this image make you feel? Was this planned? Is Akanni treated humanely? Why use this word? What does this represent?

5 What business of mine is it So long as they don’t take the yam From my savouring mouth? They came one night Booted the whole house awake And dragged Danladi out, Then off to a lengthy absence. African name Is this a vacation? Who are ‘they’? Does this sound more or less threatening than the first verse?

6 What business of mine is it So long as they don’t take the yam From my savouring mouth? Chinwe went to work one day Only to find her job was gone: No query, no warning, no probe – Just one neat sack for a stainless record. Why is it ‘neat’? Why ‘stainless’? What does this show?

7 And then one evening As I sat down to eat my yam A knock at the door froze my hungry hand. The jeep was waiting on my bewildered lawn Waiting, waiting in its usual silence. Think about the country in which this poem is set. Why is this an effective image? Why repeat this word? Why does the poem not end with a definite outcome? Is this image effective? Change of person. What is the effect of this?

8 Akanni, Danladi and Chinwe Take a closer look at what happens to these three and write a comment on each. Comment on: –Beat him soft like clay –Stuffed him –Booted –Dragged –No query –Stainless record

9 Read the following poem First They Came For The Jews ‘First they came for the Jews And I did not speak out – Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the communists And I did not speak out – Because I was not a communist. Then they came for the trade unionists And I did not speak out – Because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me – And there was no one left To speak out for me.’ Pastor Niemoller, 1938

10 About Niemoller’s Poem This was written by a German Christian pastor at the time the Nazis were rounding up Jews and sending them to death camps. Could you see any similarities? What similarities are there between the contexts of the two poems Is there a link between the structure of the two poems? Write two paragraphs explaining these points. First They Came For The Jews ‘First they came for the Jews And I did not speak out – Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the communists And I did not speak out – Because I was not a communist. Then they came for the trade unionists And I did not speak out – Because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me – And there was no one left To speak out for me.’ Pastor Niemoller, 1938


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