Presentation on theme: "R EVISING FOR TEXTUAL ANALYSIS F OCUS ON THE KEY ASPECTS OF THE POEM THAT YOU WILL BE ASKED TO REFER TO IN YOUR ANSWER IN THE EXAM / NAB: Central concerns."— Presentation transcript:
R EVISING FOR TEXTUAL ANALYSIS F OCUS ON THE KEY ASPECTS OF THE POEM THAT YOU WILL BE ASKED TO REFER TO IN YOUR ANSWER IN THE EXAM / NAB: Central concerns / themes Imagery Verse form Structure Mood Tone Sound Rhythm Rhyme Characterisation Contrast Setting Symbolism Word choice
C ENTRAL CONCERNS / THEMES The theme of a poem is its main message. Ask yourself what the poet wanted to make the reader think about (this will usually be a general / universal idea) Is there a clear message / moral? Is the poet making clear comment about a particular aspect of life / human nature? What are the main ideas conveyed through the poem? How are these ideas and messages conveyed (through the title / word choice / imagery etc.)? What situation / place / person is being described? Are any thoughts or feelings expressed or evoked? What words or phrases are used to express or evoke any thoughts or feelings in the poem?
I MAGERY Imagery – think images. The poet will often use figures of speech (particularly similes, metaphors and personification) to create a picture in your mind. What images do come to mind as you read the poem? How has the poet created such vivid images? What comparisons are being made? Why are they effective? How do they relate to the subject / themes of the poem?
V ERSE FORM How is the poem divided up? Are stanzas used and if so why? Does each deal with a new idea? Is there a regular structure to the verses? What does this add to the poem and your understanding / enjoyment of it?
S TRUCTURE Think structure – think buildings. Consider the way the poem has been constructed and how its various elements are arranged. Is there an obvious pattern (e.g. rhyme, a list, repetition, climax)? How is it punctuated and why? Have long or short sentences / lines been used? Why? What types of sentences have been used and why? Has enjambment been used? Why? Is there any unusual word order / inversion? Why?
MOOD What mood or atmosphere does the poem convey and how does it do so? Does the mood change in the poem? Why? How? Does the mood relate to the subject matter of the poem?
TONE Try to understand the poet’s point of view and ‘hear’ their tone through the words on the page. The tone reflects the poet’s attitude to a subject. Imagine how the words would sound if they were spoken. What is the poet’s attitude to the subject or idea of the poem? How does the poet feel? How is the tone or ‘voice’ in the poem conveyed? Does the poet mean what he / she says? What is the poet’s purpose? Is he being funny or serious? Is he trying to make the reader feel something? Is he trying to get the reader to believe in a point of view?
S OUND Imagine reading the poem aloud and thinking about how it sounds and how the sounds have been created. Are there soft / hard sounds? How are they created? What techniques has the poet used? Do they relate to the subject matter? Are there examples of sound techniques such as alliteration, assonance or onomatopoeia?
R HYTHM Rhythm relates to the sound of a poem and is also linked to its structure and often to its content. Does the poem have a fast or slow / regular or irregular rhythm? How is the rhythm created (punctuation / alliteration / line length etc.)? Does the rhythm reflect the subject matter of the poem?
RHYME Rhyme relates to the SOUND and STRUCTURE of a poem. Is there an obvious rhyme pattern? Are there internal rhymes? What does the use of rhyme add to the poem?
CHARACTERISATION Is a persona created through the use of first person narrative style? Are other characters described in the poem? What impression do you get of the persona / other characters in the poem?
CONTRAST Is contrast used to create effect in the poem? Remember this could be an element of STRUCTURE.
SETTING Where is the poem set? When is the poem set? How do you know? Does the setting relate to the theme or mood of the poem?
SYMBOLISM A symbol is something such as an object, picture, written word or sound, or particular mark that represents something else by association. Does anything referred to in the poem represent a bigger idea / thematic concept?
W ORD C HOICE Poetry is characterised by economical use of language. The poet has carefully selected the words used in the poem. They often suggest or imply more meaning than is actually stated. Are there any well-chosen or descriptive words? Do they create a particular atmosphere? What do they describe? Why are they effective? Think about their connotations and reasons for their use.
REVISE, REVISE, REVISE! Look over all of the poems studied in class (the more you know, the easier it will be to select a good question on the day). Ensure that you can comment on all of the aspects of the poem that you will be asked to refer to in the exam. This will also make it easier for you to select an appropriate question.
REVISE, REVISE, REVISE! Make sure you know some key quotes that you can use in the exam. Use them properly – to back up a point (don’t stick them down for the sake of it). Remember the P>E>C model. EVALUATE the poem. Don’t just identify techniques / aspects of the poem. You must explain how the work and why they are effective / how they affected you.