I have already given out in class the chapter summaries to I’m the King of the Castle but here is the link to where you can find longer, more detailed summaries of each chapter.
This has been distributed in class but in case you would like another copy, here are the common themes between the two books in your exam on Friday.
Use the following SIRS as a reminder of what to cover when you are writing about a poem:
- Subject matter (what is the poem about? Does the title provide a clue?)
- Imagery and vocabulary: imagery (metaphors, similes, personification, symbolism), vocabulary and punctuation
- Rhyme/Rhythm/Structure (and how does this link to the subject matter/themes)
- Summary linking the poem to the question
List of Poetic Device/Terms:
the first letter of a word is repeated in words that follow; the cold, crisp, crust of clean, clear ice.
the same vowel sound is repeated but the consonants are different; he passed her a sharp, dark glance, shot a cool, foolish look across the room.
a device used in poetry where a sentence continues beyond the end of the line or verse. This technique is often used to maintain a sense of continuation from one stanza to another.
exaggerating something for literary purposes which is not meant to be taken literally; we gorged on the banquet of beans on toast.
similes, metaphors and personification; they all compare something ‘real’ with something ‘imagined’.
the humorous or sarcastic use of words or ideas, implying the opposite of what they mean.
a word or phrase used to imply figurative, not literal or ‘actual’, resemblance; he flew into the room.
an uninterrupted monologue can show a character’s importance or state of mind. Monologue can be in speech form, delivered in front of other characters and having great thematic importance, or as a soliloquy where we see the character laying bare their soul and thinking aloud.
a word that sounds like the noise it is describing: ‘splash’, ‘bang’, ‘pop’, ‘hiss’.
Where two words normally not associated are brought together: ‘cold heat’ ‘bitter sweet’.
attributing a human quality to a thing or idea: the moon calls me to her darkened world.
the repetition of a word or phrase to achieve a particular effect.
the way that words sound the same at the end of lines in poetry. Poems often have a fixed rhyme-scheme (for example, sonnets have 14 lines with fixed rhyme scheme ABAB CDCD EFEF GG). Try to comment as to what contribution the rhyme-scheme is making to the text as a whole. Why do you think the poet has chosen it? Does it add control or imitate the ideas in the poem?
a repetitive beat or metre within a poem. Tennyson’s poem The Lady of Shallot uses a strong internal rhythm to build up the sense of unrelenting monotony in the poem:
There she weaves by night and day
A magic web with colours gay.
She has heard a whisper say,
A curse is on her if she stay
To look down to Camelot.
She knows not what the curse may be,
And so she weaveth steadily,
And little other care hath she,
The Lady of Shalott.
a phrase which establishes similarity between two things to emphasise the point being made. This usually involves the words ‘like’ or ‘as’; ‘he is as quick as an arrow in flight’, ‘as white as snow’, ‘like a burning star’.
often objects, colours, sounds and places work as symbols. They can sometimes give us a good insight into the themes. So, snakes are often symbols of temptation as in the story of Adam and Eve, white usually symbolises innocence and a ringing bell can be a symbol for impending doom.
the writer’s tone or voice or atmosphere or feeling that pervades the text, such as sadness, gloom, celebration, joy, anxiety, dissatisfaction, regret or anger. Different elements of writing can help to create this; long sentences or verses, with assonance (repeated vowel sounds), tend to create a sad, melancholic mood. Short syllabic, alliterative lines can create an upbeat, pacy atmosphere.
(Adapted from: BBC Bitesize)
- In the midst of a raging war, a plane evacuating a group of schoolboys from Britain is shot down over a deserted tropical island.
- Ralph and Piggy find a conch shell on the beach, and Piggy realizes it could be used as a horn to summon the other boys. Once assembled, the boys elect Ralph as their leader and start to devise a way to be rescued. Ralph chooses Jack to be in charge of the boys who will hunt food for the entire group.
- Ralph, Jack, and Simon set off to explore the island.
- When they return, Ralph orders them to light a signal fire to attract the attention of passing ships.
- The boys manage to ignite some dead wood by focusing sunlight through the lenses of Piggy’s eyeglasses. However, the boys start to play rather than monitor the fire, and the flames quickly engulf the forest.
- One of the youngest boys in the group disappears, presumably having burned to death.
- Ralph complains that they should be maintaining the signal fire and building huts for shelter. He and Simon work on the huts, the other boys play in the lagoon.
- The hunters fail in their attempt to catch a wild pig.
- Simons wanders into the jungle alone and helps some ‘littluns’. He enjoys the beautiful surroundings.
- Jack, becomes increasingly preoccupied with the act of hunting.
- When a ship passes by on the horizon one day, Ralph and Piggy notice, to their horror, that the signal fire—which had been the hunters’ responsibility to maintain—has burned out. Furious, Ralph confronts Jack, but Jack has just returned with his first kill, and all the hunters seem gripped with a strange frenzy, reenacting the chase in a kind of wild dance.
- Piggy criticizes Jack, who hits Piggy across the face. Ralph blows the conch shell and reprimands the boys in a speech intended to restore order.
- At the meeting, some of the boys have started to become afraid. The littlest boys, known as “littluns,” have been troubled by nightmares from the beginning, and more and more boys now believe that there is some sort of beast or monster lurking on the island.
- The older boys try to convince the others at the meeting to think rationally, asking where such a monster could possibly hide during the daytime. One of the littluns suggests that it hides in the sea—a proposition that terrifies the entire group.
- Not long after the meeting, some military planes engage in a battle high above the island. The boys, asleep below, do not notice the flashing lights and explosions in the clouds. A parachutist drifts to earth on the signal-fire mountain, dead. Sam and Eric, the twins responsible for watching the fire at night, are asleep and do not see the parachutist land.
- When the twins wake up, they see the enormous silhouette of his parachute and hear the strange flapping noises it makes. Thinking the island beast is there, they rush back to the camp in terror and report that the beast has attacked them.
- The boys organize a hunting expedition to search for the monster. Jack and Ralph, who are increasingly at odds, travel up the mountain. They see the silhouette of the parachute from a distance and think that it looks like a huge, deformed ape.
- The group holds a meeting at which Jack and Ralph tell the others of the sighting. Jack says that Ralph is a coward and that he should be removed from office, but the other boys refuse to vote Ralph out of power.
- Jack angrily runs away down the beach, calling all the hunters to join him. Ralph rallies the remaining boys to build a new signal fire, this time on the beach rather than on the mountain. They obey, but before they have finished the task, most of them have slipped away to join Jack.
- Jack declares himself the leader of the new tribe of hunters and organizes a hunt and a violent, ritual slaughter of a pig to solemnize the occasion. The hunters then decapitate the pig and place its head on a sharpened stake in the jungle as an offering to the beast. Later, encountering the bloody, fly-covered head, Simon has a terrible vision, during which it seems to him that the head is speaking. The voice, which he imagines as belonging to the Lord of the Flies, says that Simon will never escape him, for he exists within all men. Simon faints.
- When he wakes up, he goes to the mountain, where he sees the dead parachutist. Understanding then that the beast does not exist externally but rather within each individual boy, Simon travels to the beach to tell the others what he has seen. But the others are in the midst of a chaotic revelry—even Ralph and Piggy have joined Jack’s feast—and when they see Simon’s shadowy figure emerge from the jungle, they fall upon him and kill him with their bare hands and teeth.
- The following morning, Ralph and Piggy discuss what they have done. Jack’s hunters attack them and their few followers and steal Piggy’s glasses in the process.
- Ralph’s group travels to Jack’s stronghold in an attempt to make Jack see reason, but Jack orders Sam and Eric tied up and fights with Ralph. In the ensuing battle, one boy, Roger, rolls a boulder down the mountain, killing Piggy and shattering the conch shell. Ralph barely manages to escape a torrent of spears.
- Ralph hides for the rest of the night and the following day, while the others hunt him like an animal. Jack has the other boys ignite the forest in order to smoke Ralph out of his hiding place. Ralph stays in the forest, where he discovers and destroys the sow’s head, but eventually, he is forced out onto the beach, where he knows the other boys will soon arrive to kill him.
- Ralph collapses in exhaustion, but when he looks up, he sees a British naval officer standing over him. The officer’s ship noticed the fire raging in the jungle. The other boys reach the beach and stop in their tracks at the sight of the officer.
- Amazed at the spectacle of this group of bloodthirsty, savage children, the officer asks Ralph to explain. Ralph is overwhelmed by the knowledge that he is safe but, thinking about what has happened on the island, he begins to weep. The other boys begin to sob as well. The officer turns his back so that the boys may regain their composure.
Adapted from Sparknotes.com
So that you can revise the play at home, you can find full copies of the play easily on the internet for example here.
To make it even easier, you can go to No Fear Shakespeare which shows the original text with a modern translation so you can easily follow what’s happening. Remember though that when you quote the play in your Literature exam, you must quote the original text and not any translations you have in the book.
In Chapters 7 to 9 we see the power relationship shift back and forth while the boys are in the woods.
Write two paragraphs comparing how the boys cope in the woods.
Challenge: Who ends up with the power at the end of each chapter? Explain.
An interesting article published on independent.co.uk discusses the themes of brutality explored in Lord of the Flies and looks at real-life examples of survival and disaster. The article is written by two authors who have researched and written a book called No Mercy: True Stories of Disaster, Survival and Brutality.
Here is an extract:
For our book No Mercy, we spent five years researching how accurately Golding’s novel reflects the behaviour of real-life groups of disaster survivors stranded in isolated corners of the globe, asking: did Golding get it right?
It turns out he did.
I also found another article on William Golding, the author of Lord of the Flies on telegraph.co.uk. The title of the article is ‘William Golding: A frighteningly honest writer’. In it, author Nigel Williams writes about his memories of working with Golding.
Here is an extract:
“What the book was supposed to be,” he said, as we wandered out into his beautifully kept garden, “was a sort of critical look at our history.” He didn’t suggest his book mirrored actual events in the way in which, say, the events in Animal Farm are clearly meant to parallel the banishment of Trotsky or the Stalin show trials, but he did make it clear that the intention of the book was to look at the whole history of government in one island.
When it comes time to revise Romeo and Juliet, you should try to watch the videos made for the BBC series Shakespeare Unlocked. We watched some in class and the good thing about these videos is that the actors talk through their rehearshal process and in doing so, it makes the text a lot easier to understand.
They have included some key scenes so take a look and remember to take notes in your Literature books.