Question for homework:

'A strong wilful character is a key component in any text'. Discuss in relation to the texts you have studied. (Literary Genre)

Your homework (for Thursday) is to PLAN out what you hope to discuss in relation to 1984 and CM AND write the introduction an first paragraph of your answer.
Before you set out to write your comparative you need to have a clear idea of what you want to discuss. Before you write anything you should make a table of what points you wish to discuss: (obviously in relation to the question you are asked - ie: the example below is about 'Theme/Issue')

THEME - Control


  • Government control everything - Four Ministries 
  • Propaganda - Victory Gin etc.
  • Society is like a prision - under constant surveillance eg: telescreens 
  • Government ensure a constant state of war to rule by fear
  • Totalitarian rule - the government has complete authority
  • The ignorance of Parsons (Winston's neighbour) and how this type of mindset is how the government succeed in maintaining complete control

Children of Men [CM]

  • Government are trying to control everything - are they successful? Choose some example
  • Traditional figures of government authority are not to be trusted eg: Border control, and embassy officials.
  • Refugee camps are like prisons - shows that even a supposedly 'democratic' country enforces non democtratic or totalitarian methods to keep order 
  • Propaganda - 'Quietus' etc.
  • Government staged bombing to create a world of fear
  • The apathy and ignorance of Theo's cousin  (Nigel) when he says 'I just don't think about it'

How you go about actually writing/structuring your answer

Intertwined Jumper VS Striped Jumper

Once you have a general plan of the topics you want to discuss in relation to 1984 and CM you need to further organise these into paragraphs. For instance, if you are going to discuss the use of propaganda as a mean of control then discuss how propaganda is implemented in both (or in the three) texts at the same time.

The Striped Jumper method is fine when it comes to discussing poems by an individual poet but for the comparative you need to intertwine each text and link them up so it cannot be easily separated into an individual essay.

Look at the STRIPED JUMPER above and pretend that the black part is 1984 and the white part is CM (each part represents a paragraph. You can see that both texts are 'discussed' but they can be easily separated into a black pile and a white pile. Now look at the INTERTWINED JUMPER if blue is 1984 and red is CM how easy do you think it would be to separate the wool and make two piles of the same coloured wool? They are blended in so seamlessly that it would be very difficult and tedious to take this jumper apart. 

This is how your comparative essay should be. You need to identify similar (or opposite) topics that crop up in both texts and discuss them within the same paragraph. An example of this would be:

When we are introduced to Winston's workplace, the ironically named Ministry of Truth, its physical presence is a powerful symbol of the authority and control that the government has over its citizens. It is an enormous pyramidal structure of glittering white concrete rising 300 metres into the air, containing over 3000 rooms above ground. Similarly in CM the visual impact of government buildings adds to the air of authority that the government has over the people. As Theo makes his excursion into the wealthy section of London, the skyline is a overpowering mass of white concrete buildings - the sheer size of the buildings as Theo exits the his car is purposefully emphasised to suggest power and control. In both 1984 and CM these buildings play an important role in emphasising the fact that the government is not only a powerful force to be reckoned  with, but also demonstrates the physical nature of the control and authority. Its shows that the government has a base an is firmly cemented into the furniture of society. In 1984 the Ministries seek to control everything from what the people read to what they eat. Individualism is strictly forbidden and deviation from what the authorities provide is illegal and could result in the person being 'vaporised'. This vigorous appetite for control is also evident in CM, illustrated in the fact that Theo has to lie to his relative in order to secure transit papers for Kee. 

To be continued....(hope this helps a little)

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