A Level English Lang and Lit Othello - Page 8

Othello by William Shakespeare Essay technique (ELLA2: analysing speech and its representation: Section B) The advice in this resource relates particularly (though not exclusively) to the following essay question: How does Shakespeare use representations of speech and other dramatic techniques to present the character of Othello in Act 4 Scene 1: ‘Will you think so?’ to ‘O devil, devil!’, and in one other episode elsewhere in the play?   Selecting your other passage  Select a passage which will extend or complement your ideas about the printed extract. You may wish to choose a passage which illustrates aspects of theme, character or literary or linguistic features that are similar to the printed passage or which provide a point of contrast with the given passage. For example, an essay on the character of Othello, his change in attitude, relationships or language might be more effective if you contrast a passage from late in the play, where Othello has been poisoned by jealousy, with one from early in the play when he is presented as controlled and dignified.  You will get the majority of your marks from detailed analysis of the printed extract on the question paper so 80% of your response should be focused on this. You will be highly rewarded if your selection and discussion of an alternative passage enhances your analysis of the extract reproduced in the question and allows you to demonstrate further understanding of the theme or character in the question. One strategy is to introduce your own choice of passage in your introduction and then refer to it throughout your essay commenting on how aspects of character, theme or linguistic or literary features are similar or different from the ones you’ve identified in the printed extract. Do not leave the alternative passage to the end when you risk a superficial comment or may not have time to deal with it at all. Planning Given the time constraints of this question (40 minutes) planning is an essential way of prioritising and ordering your ideas. Realistically, you will not be able to write much more than 2-3 sides of A4 in exam conditions and you will not be able to cover everything about the passage or the theme or character given in the question. You should therefore plan the content of approximately 5 paragraphs, excluding your introduction, which cover the most important points. Example of plan 1. Introduction 2. Character of Othello and his disturbance/ breakdown 3. Speech features and syntax (fragmentation, repetition, flouting of conversational maxims, exclamatory sentences and interrogatives) 4. Imagery (diabolical imagery, raven and infection) 5. Vocabulary (taboo language ‘Zounds’, vocabulary to express frustration/anger/ desperation ‘Pish! Noses, ears, and lips.’) 6. Tension and dramatic irony (‘It is not words that shake me thus.’) 7. Conclusion © www.teachit.co.uk 2010 13864 Page 1 of 2