Daily Archives: September 4, 2016

Which text is more successful is giving an account of someone who survives life-threatening situations? You may choose either Text One or Text Two but you must explain your choice carefully. Give two reasons why you choose this text and one reason for not choosing the other text. You may wish to comment on the writer’s language and technique. You should support your points with evidence from the text. By Roha Khan


Compared to Text Two, I think Text One does a better job at achieving its purpose, that is, to inform the reader about the feelings of a person moving to a foreign country. To make his point clear, the author describes Allen’s feelings using words and phrases like “a source of wonder for Allen”, “bizarre” and “excitement”. This intends to give the reader a clear idea about the character’s mix of emotion.

The author has used imagery to tell about the changes. Without any direct comparison, the writer tells about the differences, for example, “so smooth, no potholes, no wild bends”. He even writes about how London is quieter, compared to Ethiopia,   especially using the words, “Can you hear the nothing, Father?”  This makes the reader realize the change in the environment better. The writer also addresses the character’s sense of smell−“to the strange smell of English breakfast”−which help the reader understand how different things are.

Text Two, on the other hand, is in first person and gives an impression of being “rescued” rather than “moving”. The author does not understand the language that is being spoken, but rather comments on people’s attitude towards her, for example, “generosity” and “gratitude”. Except for in the first paragraph, the author fails to tell us about the new place or city.



AO2: First Time I met George


The title of this passage is the ‘first time I met George’ written by John Wickham from ‘Meeting in Milkmarket’. The extract is a narrative story written in first person. The narrator is not named in the passage and he describes the first time he met a boy who became his friend at school. The title ‘ The first time I met George’ gives us a clear idea of the extract. The theme of the passage is injustice and friendship. In the beginning of the story the narrator is envious of George. Line16: ” also in me a little envy of his fortune”. The author subjectly influences the reader by intentionally only presenting one side of the argument, which has an effect on the reader. For example line22: ” This seemed a monstrous piece of favoritism”

The purpose of the passage is to entertain as the writer expresses their feelings and experiences. The audience of the passage is a general audience- adults and young adults- anyone who can understand how the context changes from envy to friendship. The attitude of the reader after reading the context will not be amused as to why they ended up as friends as there was no element of surprise throughout the text.
There is a small hint of vernacular vocabulary as some sentences are not structured properly. Line27: ” They put him to sit next to me”. The writer uses standard punctuation like colons and brackets like in line 30:” (in all my school days I never had a whole pencil)” adding emphasis to certain points. The choice of vocabulary was overall simple and that made the passage approachable to wide range of audiences. There was no trace of dialogue in the passage.
Important terms like ‘friends’ and ‘friendship’ are repeated which highlights the theme of friendship. In the end of the story the writer performs a favor to George which leads to their friendship and the writer seemed to be very pleased with himself. Line 33:” I have done nothing in my like since which had pleased me more”.
I believe the writer achieves his purpose to entertain the audience. The writer uses emotive language describing his first impressions of George which appeals to the readers, and invariably appeals to relate to our values and attitudes reminding readers of their first impressions.

AO2: Money by Misha Ahmad

The title of the first passage is ‘Whats money?’ And is from the novel written by Charles dickens named ‘Dombey and Son’. The title of the second passage is ‘Zimbabwe grapples with hyperinflation’ and it is a news report from January 2009. The theme of the first passage is money as in the first line Paul says,” Papa! What’s money!” In this extract Mr.Dombey has a conversation with his young, anxious son who is lonely and lacks a mother, as she passed away shortly after giving birth to him. I believe the theme of the second passage is facing reality and modern struggles as the title itself says ‘ grapples with hyperinflation’ and grapples means struggles. The second passage is about Zimbabwe’s descending economy and the struggle of the local people as they are ‘unable to afford a square meal”( line 14)
The purpose of the first passage is to entertain as it is a narrative and writer expresses his own ideas. The targeted audience is young adults or adults, anyone capable enough to understand the irony of the passage. The purpose of the second passage is -to inform- as it is a news report. The targeted audience of the second passage is all newspaper readers or readers of a specific magazine for example a world affairs magazine. And the passage would inform the readers of the situation of the economy in Zimbabwe.
In the first passage the author is trying to create an ironic tone between the father and the son. As the son asks Mr.Dombey what money can do, he replies and says,” Money, Paul can do anything”(line30) the curious child then said “Why didn’t money save me my momma?”(line45)  We can see from the description of the paragraph that Mr.Dombey was in a difficulty. Line 9:”Mr.Dombey was in difficulty”. In the second passage the writer has an objective and formal tone as we can see from the sentence structure, line1: ” Zimbabwe is grappling with hyperinflation officially estimated at 231 million percent, and its currency has virtually lost its value.” The main objective of the writer is to convey the  message to the audience. Keywords like ‘hyperinflation’ and ‘ worthless’ have been repeated as to add an emphasis on the reader.
In the first passage the writer uses figurative language which can be effective to highlight points. Line36: ” as though the fire had been his adviser and prompter” also in line34, ” as if his wit were in his palm and he was sharpening it”. Both being similies, highlighting the point and also effective for giving the reader a description. Irony is effective for humiliating a character as the writer uses it to humiliate Mr.Dombey. Mr.Dombey says, ” A good thing cant be cruel” referring to money. The son replies and says ” if its a good thing and can do anything, I wonder why it didn’t save me my momma.” Creating an effect on the reader.
Dialogues are used in the second paragraph which can be effective to engage the reader and make the context irrefutable. For example, line16: ” Now we can hardly look after our families- Taxi driver”. “We are given pay rises but they’re worthless- lecturer”. ” I don’t know if I’ll have a job at the end of the week- businessman”. The writer uses statistics and evidence in the passage which forces the reader to believe upon it. Line3:” One US dollar was trading at this date around ZW$25 billion”. The writer also divides the paragraphs and gives subheadings, ” Living with Inflation” which gives emphasis on the subject of discussion.
In the first paragraph the writer uses dialogues and unique vocabulary to convey his point that money can not do anything and how all questions of an innocent child can not be answered by an adult. In the second passage the writer uses general vocabulary as to convey the message of the struggles of hyperinflation to his audience, with using evidence, statistics and dialogues at the end of the passage the reader is convinced as to the struggles of the local Zimbabwe people.

AO3: First Impressions by Misha Ahmad


The title of the first passage is ‘The first time I met George’ from meeting in Milkmarket by John Wickham. As you can see the title is very descriptive, thus describing the main storyline that stretches throughout the passage. The passage is written in first form ( the narrator remains un-named). The writer describes the first time he met George at school and his feelings towards him and then after when they end up as friends.

The title of the second passage is ‘First day at school in Barbados’ from Growing up stupid under the Union Jack by Austin Clarke.The author was brought up in Barbados in the Caribbean when it was under British colonial rule. The passage is about the writers singular journey to a great uncertain world for the first time, referring to school. Line21: ” on my way to a new but uncertain world.”
Both passages have a common theme which is ‘first impressions’. As you can clearly see from their titles. Passage 1:”First time I met George”. Passage 2:”First day at school in Barbados”. The intended audience of both passages is a generalized approach to adults and young adults. The purpose of both passages is to entertain as they are both a mixture of descriptive and narrative writing. In  the first passage the writer moreover describes his first experience and ideas with a new friend, while in the second passage the author explains his feelings.
I believe in the first passage the writer uses a slight judgmental tone as he passes judgments on George on his first day for example line16: “George would be one of those boys who would get special treatment”. In the second passage the writer uses an optimistic and sentimental tone whilst describing his emotions like in line9: ” poor and ambitious mother”.
In the first passage the writer uses figurative language to describe his ideas for example in line22:” This seemed a monstrous piece of favoritism”. This is a hyperbole and metaphor which had an effect on the reader as a point is dramatically reinforced to arouse the feelings of the readers. A hint of vernacular vocabulary is used, line26: ” They put him to sit next to me” engaging the reader to the content.
In the second paragraph, the writer uses simple sentence structures which has an effect on the readers for example line5:” And nobody told me so far”. Also vernacular vocabulary and dialogues are used in the passage emphasizing points. For example line 11: ” Go long,boy, and learn! Learning going to make you into a man”. Line33:” You is a Combermere boy now!” The language also gives us an idea of the status of the black community back in 1944 in the Caribbean. The writer also grasps the effective use of imagery while he imagines the hypothetical future. Line43:” ride about on a horse in the sun, under a khaki helmet, dressed in a khaki suit, to drive some of my less fortunate friends and neighbors to work in the fields”. This adds color to the article and engages the reader.
In the first paragraph, after the forceful assertion of subjectly influencing the reader, by appropriate language and only presenting the writers own side of the story of the favoritism of George, the writer also makes the readers sympathize George, line 27;” he was crying from public shame”. The writer then lends George a lead pencil and teaches him how to use it. In the end of writer is effective in achieving his purpose of first experiences with a new boy, and how they ended up as friends.
In the second paragraph, whilst using effective description such as similies, line17: ” white as snow and ironed like glass” the writer is successful in evoking strong emotional response and in expressing how big of a deal it was for him to go to school and for his mother. Line6: ” that was a day of personal rejoicing for my mother”.
Both authors come effective in achieving their purpose in the end by using different linguistic techniques and presentational devices.