2 Lesson Objective: To understand the use of structure, language and imagery in Island Man Lesson outcome: A fully annotated poem
3 What are the similarities and differences. List them in your books What are the similarities and differences? List them in your books. Aim for 5.
4 What is the “surface meaning”, the STORY, of the poem? Reading the poemWhat is the “surface meaning”, the STORY, of the poem?
5 SURFACE MEANINGA man who used to live on a Caribbean island still dreams of this place although he now lives in London. As he wakes up his dream of the Caribbean is replaced by the reality of London.
6 Group work1. Structure – sentence length, position on the page. Why has the poet done this?2. Word choices – anything look out of place? Why has she done this?3. Imagery – what language techniques are used (metaphor, simile, personification). What is the effect?
7 Theme….. Your thoughts?Grace Nichols was born in Georgetown, Guyana, in 1950 and grew up in a small country village on the Guyanese coast. She moved to the city with her family when she was eight, an experience central to her first novel, Whole of a Morning Sky (1986), set in 1960s Guyana in the middle of the country's struggle for independence. She worked as a teacher and journalist and, as part of a Diploma in Communications at the University of Guyana, spent time in some of the most remote areas of Guyana, a period that influenced her writings and initiated a strong interest in Guyanese folk tales, Amerindian myths and the South American civilisations of the Aztec and Inca. She has lived in the UK since 1977.She said: ‘I feel at home now both in Guyana and in England. When I’m in Guyana…I feel like I belong there because I spring from that landscape. But partly because I have children in England, I also feel at home in this culture, with their dreams and aspirations. So I embrace both. England is where I live, where I make my living, but when I’m in England I’m always looking back. Both as a writer and as an individual, I’m always looking at both worlds.’
8 Answer these questions in your books. How do Grace Nichols’ own experiences tie in with what happens in the poem?What do you think the tone of the poem ( mood) and message of the poem is?
9 Is the poem a:A criticism of life in LondonA criticism of the 3rd world poverty that forced people to become economic migrants?A criticism of those migrants who hold an idealised view of their homeland……………something else?
10 In the exams you will need to compare poems…… Identify 5 similarities and differences between Island Man and Blessing.Consider: Poet’s background, use of structure, use of similes/metaphor e.g comparison of their subject matter to something valuable?
11 PEE Practise:1. How is the sun described and why do you think Grace Nichols has chosen to do this?2. The first line is a single word. What is it and why has the poet chosen to use this?3. It is an effort for the island man to come back to reality. How is that effort conveyed?4. Look carefully at the last line. What do you notice about it structurally? Why does it have capital letters? Why has the poet chosen to do this?
12 Homework: Due Wednesday Identify 5 similarities and differences between Island Man and Blessing.Consider: Poet’s background, use of structure, use of similes/metaphor e.g comparison of their subject matter to something valuable?
13 Performance poetryUsing what you know of the poem and the poet’s background, create a performance of the poem.What makes a good group performance?I will assess this task for speaking and listening – both how you perform in the group, and during you performance.
15 What are the links and similarities between the two poems? How do the poems “Nothing’s Changed” and “Two Scavengers” deal with inequality?What are the links and similarities between the two poems?
16 A spider diagramIn circles round the page write the names of all the poems we have studied.Keep them spread out, you will need to write in the spaces between
17 Using the cultural ideas listed below, what links can you find? IdentityPolitical belief/comment ( injustice/inequality)Sense of placeHuman attitudes/relationshipsCultural differences
18 Using the cultural ideas listed below, what links can you find? Identity – Limbo, Island Man,Political belief/comment ( injustice/inequality)Sense of placeHuman attitudes/relationshipsCultural differences
19 With your partner, brainstorm some ideas to include in one of these essays How do the poets use particular details to bring out their ideas in Vultures and one other poem?Compare the ways in which the poets present ideas about rich and poor people in “Two Scavengers in a Truck..” and one other poem
20 Island Man(for a Caribbean island man in London who still wakes up to the sound of the sea)MorningAnd island man wakes upTo the sound of blue surfIn his headThe steady breaking and wombingwild seabirdsand fisherman pushing out to seathe sun surfacing defiantlyfrom the eastof his small emerald islandhe always comes back groggily groggilyClear link with other traditionsThis word has many associations, but the predominant image is one of comfort and securityAlliteration with the letter 's'Note the vibrant colourspersonificationFree verse and lack of punctuation suggest a dream like qualityRepetition, as if he cannot believe it, or is reluctant to acknowledgeWritten in 3rd person
21 Link with dreamColour contrast, not vibrant but drabUnusual word choiceChange of perspective hereComes back to sandsof a grey metallic soarto surge of wheelsto dull North Circular road muffling mufflinghis crumpled pillow wavesisland man heaves himselfAnother London dayGrace Nicholsa busy road around LondonRepetition, as if he cannot believe it, or is reluctant to acknowledgeSuggest comparison of a man heaving himself on to an islandPunStark last line, physically isolated, with no preposition or verbCapital letters suggest formality
22 LanguageMetaphorsands / of a grey metallic soar (London as an unpleasant beach)Personification• the sun surfacing defiantly• to dull North Circular roarAlliteration• sun surfacing• Stanza 3 = Sands, soar, surge (like the sounds of the sea)Repetition• groggily groggily• muffling muffling
23 Themes Is the poem a: A criticism of life in London A criticism of the 3rd world poverty that forced people to become economic migrants?A criticism of those migrants who hold an idealised view of their homeland
24 Interpretation (the theme of the poem) What comment is Nichols making about the importance of culture and cultural background?
25 Language (how the poem is told eg Language (how the poem is told eg. register, tense, poetic voice, 1st or 3rd person)The poem is told in the third person but is clearly about a very personal experience. Why is this?
26 Imagery (the pictures created in the reader’s mind eg Imagery (the pictures created in the reader’s mind eg. simile, metaphor, personification, symbols)How has Nichols used colour in her poem?