The Class Game Poem Essay

Presentation on theme: "Poem A: ‘Half-caste’ by John Agard"— Presentation transcript:

1 Poem A: ‘Half-caste’ by John Agard
Poem B: ‘The Class Game’ by Mary CaseyPoem C: ‘Conscientious Objector’ by Edna St. Vincent Mallay

2 STRUCTURE Similarities Differences Half-caste The Class Game
Enjambment – keeps the structure of the poem whilst still making sense of the poem.Four stanzas of varying length and lines of varying length. Longer stanzas start with ‘Explain yuself’ – repetition.One long continuous stanza. No breaks, to not break argument and shows frustration with the class differences? However, clear verses are shown with repetition of the line “how can you tell what class I’m from?”Narrow layout, perhaps to reflect the narrow-mindedness of some people? Or to resemble someone standing on one leg?

3 MEANING Similarities Differences Half-caste The Class Game
Prejudice against other races, half-caste.Prejudice against other classes.Being half-caste doesn’t make you any less of a person, or half a person. The poem is mocking people who think this. It doesn’t matter what race you are.It doesn’t matter what class you are, everyone is proud to be who they are.

4 IMAGERY Similarities Differences Half-caste The Class Game
Examples of mixtures and half-and-half combinations (cloudy weather, Picasso mixing blue and green) to show how ridiculous it is of people to look down on them because they are half a nationality.Examples of pictures comparing the two lifestyles.“Or is it because my hands are stained with toil?Instead of soft lily-white with perfume and oil?”Rough hands, muddy and leathery against pale, delicate fingers. Two very different images.Creates a ridiculous image in the reader’s mind of a person with only half of everything to show how ridiculous the people who are prejudice against half-caste people really are.

5 LANGUAGE Similarities Differences Half-caste The Class Game
Non-standard English, showing how the poet might speak.Addressing the reader. Questioning the reader.Demands explanation. Minimal use of punctuation. Not even a capital on the name Picasso. Incorrect grammar.Rhetorical questions used.Incorrect grammar showing the poet is lower class.Lots of local dialogue and sayings – “Bread pudding is wet nelly” – showing where he comes from and that he’s different, but why must it matter?

6 EFFECTS Similarities Differences Half-caste The Class Game
Thought provocative, remains interesting by use of humorous language yet they both have very important and serious arguments.Makes reader wonder whether class matters in modern day society or not and that class shouldn’t be important.Class divisions are formed by people who believe they are superior or inferior to others.Makes reader wonder whether race matters in modern day society or not and that race shouldn’t be important.Racial divisions are formed by people who believe they are superior or inferior to others.


Presentation on theme: "Session 1: “Half Caste” and “The Class Game”"— Presentation transcript:

1 Session 1: “Half Caste” and “The Class Game”
Poetry RevisionSession 1: “Half Caste” and “The Class Game”

2 Poetry Revision Sessions
Take place on Mondays (P14) and Tuesdays (P12)Must be prompt! Sessions will BEGIN at 1.25Latecomers not welcomeBring poetry anthologyRegisters takenAll materials will go up on the blog- the NEW blog-

3 To start us off….What is a METAPHOR? In pairs, please come up with a definition and an example of a metaphor (preferably one you have made up yourself and not one from the poems) Eg: ‘my son is a beanpole’ A metaphor is when you say one thing ‘is’ another to describe it.

4 “Half Caste” by John Agard
How do you respond to this poem? Think up a word that summarises your reaction.RacePrejudiceInjustice….How do we respond to this poem?

5 What is this poem about? WHO is this poem about?
WHERE could the voice be from / be living?WHY was this poem written?HOW is the poem written?WHAT kind of poem is it?WHEN might this poem have been written?I haven’t filled these in because it’s good to come up with your own interpretations…. What do you think? Can you back up your ideas with quotations from the poem?

6 Voice Who is the voice? What are they trying to communicate to us?
How is the voice presented?Direct address to reader eg ‘wha yu mean’Dialect / accent used – what does this suggest?ChallengingRepetition – ‘Explain yuself’ also an imperative (command) verb - demanding

7 ImageryWhat do we mean by imagery? Why do poets describe create detailed images in their work? What images are present in this poem?

8 Weather- English weather is mixed of light and shadow
Image:Effect it creates / Why it has been usedArt- Picasso, abstract art, used lots of colour, an ‘impression’ of something rather than realistic / naturalisticAs Picasso’s art is beautiful because he mixes colours and looks at things in a different way, people who are mixed race can also be beautifulWeather- English weather is mixed of light and shadowEnglish weather is mixed up, and this is something which we see as very ‘English’ so mixed race people can inhabit that national identity too. Also the balance of light and shadow in English weather can be beautiful, as are mixed race people.Halves - half an eye etc…You cannot have half an eye, like you cannot have ‘half’ a person. Calling someone ‘half’ anything is ridiculous but it is also nonsensical and impossible.

9 Rhyme and RhythmDoes this poem use rhyme? - Some half rhymes are used eg ‘overcast’ ‘pass’ Does this poem use rhythm? - The poem builds in momentums, as points are made in the voice’s argument How does this poem use alliteration and repetition? - Repetition is used to keep proving a point to the reader

10 Form and StructureDoes this poem have a formal form or structure? - Not really How does the poem use enjambement? - Gives the poem a conversational feel and means it flows well. Can imagine the speaking vocie How does the voice build tension / importance? - The argument builds with each point How does the poem end? - The reader is unsatisfied and the voice proves they do not know everything- they are still unknowledgeable. Political.

11 “The Class Game” by Mary Casey
How would you sum up the voice in this poem? (One word or phrase)What do you think about the voice in this poem?Voice

12 What is this poem about? WHO is this poem about?
WHERE could the voice be from / be living?WHY was this poem written?HOW is the poem written?WHAT kind of poem is it?WHEN might this poem have been written?

13 VoiceWho is the voice of the poem? Who are they speaking to? What are they trying to prove? Do they succeed?

14 How does the voice speak?
Direct Address – use of ‘you’ to address the readerRhetorical questions – ‘How can you tell what class I’m from?’Swapping between dialect / accent and posh words and phrases – confuses reader > who is the voice?unapologetic

15 Language choiceUses words the reader might not understand – creates distance, prevents us from making an initial judgementScathing ‘Bye mummy dear’ – characterises posh people in a certain wayCrude imagery ‘toilet instead of bog when I want to pee’ – shocking?

16 Rhyme and RhythmDoes this poem have a rhyme scheme? Why? What effect does it have? -The rhyme scheme is not regular but the poet does use rhyming couplets nearly all the way through. This creates a jaunty feel to the poem, which helps the mocking tone the author wants to use and the humour in the poem. Does this poem use rhythm? (Look at the end…) - There is a rhythm created by the line-end rhyming, and at the end the poet uses short lines to build up to the final statement which is given poignancy as a result.

17 Form and StructureDoes this poem have a formal form? Is it particularly structured? Why?The poem is again very conversational, which helps with its focus on the way people speak. It is informal, suggesting the voice’s class or purpose and helping create humorous moments.How does it end?- The final statement of the poem is the focus of the poem and is the most important thing the voice says.

18 ComparisonSee if you can answer these yourself……. What are the similarities between the two poems? What are the main differences in how they present their ideas?

19 Over the coming weeks…We will cover ALL the anthology poems… We will practise writing PEA paragraphs We will practise exam questions We will discuss highly interesting literary works in an extremely intelligent and focussed fashion. See you tomorrow!

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