The winter Oak Essay
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How far do the writers make the settings of their stories interesting and important, here (Games at Twilight) and in one other story from the list above? The story of Games at Twilight is set in extremely torrid weather conditions. The temperature is portrayed to be a severe problem for people as ‘It was too hot. Too bright. ‘ The use of the word ‘too’ emphasises the difficulty of playing in the extreme heat and blinding sun. The intense heat is described as being ‘still too hot to play’ and ‘still sizzling’ ‘still’ emphasising the ongoing heat and the use of sibilance adds an effect of harshness to the atmosphere.
Desai also personifies the white walls which ‘glared stridently’, to suggest even the walls have conspired forcefully to set an adverse scene. These conditions are interesting as not many people live in areas with this ‘arid’, and hot conditions so it is unusual. The settings have an importance in creating an image of the scene in the reader’s mind. Desai uses similes to create strange images of the setting and to show the impact of the heat. For example, ‘birds still dropped, like dead fruit’ and ‘outside was like a tray made of beaten brass’.
These quotes create an eerie sense of stillness and laziness. This is backed up with the idea that ‘no life stirred’ in the garden implying that the sun has managed to burn everything to death. Compared to The Winter Oak, the scene in Games of Twilight is quite the opposite. The interesting setting portrayed in The Winter Oak is a classroom is full of life. There is ‘banging of desks’ and a ‘piercing bell’ jump everyone to life. The kids are ‘noisily’ messing around and when asked for by the teacher ‘quiet was not immediately established’.
As stated in the title of the story the season is Winter and therefore this contrasts to the heat experience in Games at Twilight. The setting in The Winter Oak describes how ‘sparklets of frost were thawing’. This description is important as it is describing exactly how cold the setting is. Later on in the story of Games at Twilight, when Ravi is hiding in the garden shed, Desai successfully manages to create a scary image for the shed. Desai uses repetition of the word ‘dark’ to contrast with the light outside to show how black it must be inside.
The shed is described as ‘depressing mortuary’ this is very interesting as it leaves the reader in suspense as they wonder whether this is a sign of foreboding. The shed is also ‘spooky’ and has ‘creatures’ moving around inside which adds a sense of mystery. Desai also uses the sense of smell and touch to create the interesting scene. The shed ‘smelt of rats’ and Ravi did not want to ‘touch or feel anything’. The smell of rats is horrific and rats can be dangerous vermin and the as the reader you wonder why Ravi does not want to touch anything.
The scariness of the shed contrasts with the forest in The Winter Oak. The forest is described as being ‘enchanted’. This creates an image of the forest being put under a magical spell. This is interesting as this setting is unusual and therefore allows the reader to use their imagination. Everything around the forest is ‘white’ which the opposite to the darkness of the shed in Games at Twilight. White signifies purity and beauty which the forest is meant to represent.
An oak tree stands in the middle of the forest, ‘huge and majestic as a cathedral’. Nagibin’s use of simile to compare the oak tree to a cathedral refers to spiritualism as a cathedral is a spiritual place of wisdom. This is important because Savushkin is devoted to the forest and he loves the time he spend in it. Show preview only The above preview is unformatted text This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Miscellaneous section.