How are the events presented in the story?
How is the plot developed? Does the author use a linear (chronological) pattern? Is flashback one of the techniques used?
Do any of the early events or incidents prepare the reader for later ones? Do any events or incidents lead you to anticipate the outcome? What is the nature of the conflict?
At what point does the story climax?
Does the climax bring about a change in character or situation?
What are the types of character/s present in the story? (flat, round, stereotype, stock) Are the characters believable?
How are the characters presented by the author?
What is the main character like?
Does the author present fully developed characters?
What are the conflicts that the main character faces?
Does this character change as a result of the events that he or she experiences in the story? What is the nature of the change?
If there is no change, why not?
· How important is the setting of the story?
· Does the setting help to develop the plot? How does it do so? · What does the setting contribute to our understanding of the meaning of the story? · Does the setting have any influence on the characters?
Point of View
Does the point of view that is used help the author to expose the theme? If so, how? To what extent is the narrator a reliable witness to events? Would the choice of a different point of view change the story significantly?
What is the theme of the story?
Does the title provide a clue to what it is?
Is there only one theme or are there several themes?
Does the author suggest the theme through imagery?
· Does the author use figurative language in telling this story, or is the language literal? · If figurative language is used, what is the effect? · Does the author use dialogue to advance the action of the story? If dialect is used
what is the effect?
· What examples of figurative language are most striking in the story? · Why are they striking?
· How does figurative language contribute to the meaning and theme of the story?
Short Stories Prescribed for the 2012-2014 Examinations
Blackout – Roger Mais
Shabine – Hazel Simmons-McDonald
Emma – Carolyn Cole
The Man of the House – Frank O’Connor
Septimus – John Wickham
The Day the World Almost Came to an End – Pearl Crayton
The Boy Who Loved Ice Cream – Olive Senior
Berry – Langston Hughes
Mom Luby and the Social Worker – Kristin Hunter
To Da-duh, in Memoriam – Paule Marshall
* Williams, D., Simmons-McDonald, H (Ed) (2005). A World of Prose for CSEC Oxford Heinemann Educational Publishers (pp. 188-193)
3. NOVELS (Prose)
According to the current CSEC syllabus, for the English B examination, the re will be four questions, two on each of the two books prescribed. You will be required to write an essay based on thorough knowledge of one of the prescribed novels. You will not be required to compare the two texts, but you may be asked to make a comparison within a text.
Students are required to read at least ONE novel (The Wine of Astonishment). The following elements will be explored in relation to the novel under study:-
Language and Style
Narrative Point of view
Students should be able to:-
Show knowledge of the Novel
Identify Literary Devices used by the author and state their effectiveness to the theme or issue brought out, or to the overall presentation of the novel. Use personal knowledge or experiences to comment on or analyze the novel and its effectiveness. The novel is possibly the most popular of all literary forms. This is probably so because, generally, novels are exciting, interesting and informative. The novel is longer than the short story, long enough to engage a plot or storyline that can be complex. Suspense can be built and held. A number of climaxes can keep the reader engrossed and anxious to know ‘where it will all end’.
Songs of Silence – Curdella Forbes
The Wine of Astonishment – Earl Lovelace
Students are required to read at least ONE play. The following elements will be explored in relation to the plays under study:-
Performance (Plot and Structure)
Asides and Soliloquies
Issues and Theme
Types of plays
Students should be able to:-
Show Knowledge of the Play
Identify Literary Devices used by the poet and state their effectiveness to the theme or issue brought out, or to the overall presentation of the play. Use personal knowledge or experiences to comment on or analyze the play and its effectiveness.
Prescribed Plays/ Drama texts
A Midsummer Night’s Dream – William Shakespeare
Old Story Time – Trevor Rhone
PAPER 1- (Unseen) Comprehension type Questions
There is NO MULTPLE CHOICE in English B. Paper 1 is known as the Unseen Paper. This paper tests comprehension and the ability to say how a writer/poet achieves a given effect. The paper consists of 3 sections. On this paper you will be given extracts of a POEM, PROSE FICTION and DRAMA with questions that follow. You will be required to draw upon you comprehension skills to answer ALL the questions on this paper.
Analysis, that is, examining the writer’s use of language(eg. Imagery, rhythm, tone, mood, sound of words) and the ability to say how these function effectively in a piece of creative writing. Attention to dramatic devices, such as stage direction and the use of sound and lighting effects.
Awareness of the relationship between action and motive.
Awareness of the interaction among characters.
It is important that you develop the vocabulary to express ideas about literature. Your writing should:
Be convincing, clear and focused
Show that you are thinking about what you write, and
Be relevant to the questions being asked.
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Why Study Literature
WHY STUDY LITERATURE?
To open our minds to ambiguities of meaning. While people will “say what they mean and mean what they say” in an ideal world, language in our world is, in reality, maddeningly and delightfully ambiguous. If you go through life expecting people to play by your rules, you’ll only be miserable, angry and disappointed. You won’t change them. Ambiguity, double entendres and nuance give our language depth and endless possibility. Learn it. Appreciate it. Revel in it. To benefit from the insight of others. The body of world literature contains most available knowledge about humanity–our beliefs, our self-perception, our philosophies, our assumptions and our interactions with the world at large.
Some of life’s most important lessons are subtly expressed in our art. We learn these lessons only if we pause to think about what we read. Why would anyone bury important ideas? Because some ideas cannot be expressed adequately in simple language, and because the lessons we have to work for are the ones that stick with us. To explore other cultures and beliefs.
History, anthropology and religious studies provide a method of learning about the cultures and beliefs of others from the outside looking in. Literature, on the other hand, allows you to experience the cultures and beliefs of others first-hand, from the inside looking out. The only other way to have such a personal understanding of others’ beliefs are to adopt them yourself–which most of us aren’t willing to do. If you understand where other people are coming from, you are better equipped to communicate meaningfully with them–and they with you.
Courtney from Study Moose
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