• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Both stories studied concentrate on how people appear to others. Discuss the way each writer uses comic elements to achieve a serious effect

Extracts from this document...


Both stories studied concentrate on how people appear to others. Discuss the way each writer uses comic elements to achieve a serious effect Prejudicial judgements are the central point which both stories concentrate on using comedy. 'Mrs Turner Cutting the Grass' and 'The Purple Plieus' are both written in different historical and cultural backgrounds.Mrs Turner and Me Coombes are both victims of prejudicial judgements. Other characters in the story and the reader itself have judged both characters harshly. Carol Shields uses comedy to examine the nature of prejudicial judgements. Whereas using comedy, H.G.Wells explores the main character, in order for us to mock them. Both stories use comic elements to manipulate the response of the reader towards the characters. This is a key technique used in both texts to influence our thoughts. The stories are similar in that each plot develops from people conflicting views of each other. As we begin reading "Mrs Turner Cutting the Grass," we see her as a comic character, who appears to us as a unique yet amusing character to us. We start off laughing at Mrs Turner, but when her history is exposed, we are no longer laughing at her .We sympathise with her. Carol Shields uses comic elements to achieve a serious effect. However, when we have more knowledge on Mr Coombes domestic history is exploited we mock him. Carol Shields uses comedy to challenge to our prejudices. She wants us to laugh at the Mrs Turner then think why are we laughing at her. H.G.Wells uses comedy to emphasise our prejudices and reinforce our prejudices. In both "Mrs. Turner Cutting the grass" and "The Purple Pileus", there are characters that show pity for the central characters. For example, the professor who meets Mrs Turner certainly pities her for her lack of class or taste, and lack of knowledge about temples. He makes his feelings known publicly and makes money from the consequent poem that follows. ...read more.


Is that such a crime? She is not obsessed with living up to the standards the society has set-unlike the sachers. "Oh, what a sight is Mrs Turner cutting her grass and how like an ornament, she shines". The story ends exactly how it begins. Carol Shields refers to Mrs Turner as a "sight" right in the opening paragraph and calls her a "sight" in the closing paragraph. But at the end of the story we see the "sight" as a positive term, mainly because we know more about her background and history. "an ornament she shines" this is certainly praising her. As the reader finishes reading the story, some may even envy her, who at first felt superior then her, as mrs turner has done so much in life and experienced so much, that she realises that prejudicial judgements don't mean anything. Carol Shields achieves what she set out to do with the story, she wanted to expose our prejudices, and then wants us to think about why we are laughing at her, and why we reach to certain judgements about people. We also feel sorry for her, as she had been judged so harshly throughout her life. Nevertheless, there is more sympathy towards her then Mr Coombes. Mr Coombes is being laughed at, because of his actions and what he doesn't do, whereas Mrs Turner is being laughed at because she is ignorant of what people think of her. she has been ignorant of what people think of her. She has never fit into the society and has always been peculiar. One of the points Carol Shields emphasises at the end of the story is that all Mrs Turner has ever done is live her life to please her self. She is being laughed at because she does not show off, not because she "doesn't know". The point that she "doesn't know" is subjective. ...read more.


Alternatively, what we judge them to be. By using comedy the writers are successful in making the characters seem deceptive. "....enjoying both his cigarette and the prospect of an argument", when Clarence first has an encounter with Mr Coombes, he believes coombes is at a lower level than himself. This makes Clarence feel superior to him. In addition, in physical appearance Clarence is described as 'lank young man', the fact that he is taller then Coombes, makes Coombes feel at no-authority. However, after Coombes takes the drug and goes home, Clarence no longer feels at power, "Clarence approved himself a coward". After his little performance, we realise Coombes is a little hypocrite in the story. His wife has taken him seriously and gives Coombes the respect he believes he deserves. All the same, the reader still sees him as a slapstick comedian. At the end of the story, Coombes has an attempt at dignity. He lies to his brother so hes brother admires him for ewhat seems as Coombes' authority. "I was a bit too easy and loving", Coombes was more of a pushover than a loving husband, but hes too ashamed to say it to hes brother. He plays the sort of man, he wish he always has, even before the drug. "We 'ad a...pitched into them". Coombes is telling the truth, just not the whole truth. That's what makes it so humorous. " I dessay they're sent for some wise purpose", Coombes believes that pretending to be sexist makes him look like a real man with authority. Just like 'Mrs Turner Cutting the Grass'. Purple Plieus ends with the author using same sort of adjectives to describe the main character, but with an extra positive adjective. H/G/Wells describes Coombes as a 'little man' in the beginning, and then at the end calls him an 'absurd little man'. Absurd is the key word here. This is exactly what we think of Coombes at the end of the story. Just like we think Mrs Turner is an 'ornament'. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Charles Dickens section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Charles Dickens essays

  1. Dickens' approach of contrasting circumstances in both France and England acts as the appropriate ...

    experiencing the sheer elation of opulent wealth and glittering pomp, but they are detached from the sufferings and misery of the common folk. Dickens' approach of contrasting circumstances in both France and England acts as the appropriate background to invigorate the factual violent revolutionary activity, both serving to create a tense and unrepressed setting.

  2. Social class in Great Expectations and its effect upon the characters

    In this light, Pip may well have been better off if he were to remain with Joe and maintain his working class values. Equally, Wilde's use of pathetic fallacy: 'the night was cold and foggy' foretells Dorian's formidable murder of Basil Hallward, where Dorian displays 'the mad passions of a hunted animal'.

  1. Discuss how Dickens creates sadness in Book the Second

    She seems to be in the crossfire of everyone yet she is one of the most innocent of all. As she has rarely experienced emotions due to her "ology" filled bring up, she does not know how to react to Mr Harthouse who except in kindness as she believes he is being kind and honest to her.

  2. Original Writing - Prose: Behind Bars - It's a tough job with unsociable hours, ...

    Whether that means getting through to someone about their drug addiction, or just talking to one of the prisoners and giving them a bit of comfort." I watch Carol as she hands one of the prisoners awaiting trial a

  1. What Techniques Do Authors Use To Present the Female Characters? using extracts from Great ...

    This is impersonal because everybody gets married in the same Church; this means that the characters are not that important. Also, Trevor does not give the reader his opinion of this either. Also, William Trevor writes in a panoramic manner.

  2. Comparison between The Son's Vito and Kiss Miss Carol

    Randolph is extremely knowledgeable and corrects his mother's mistake with this response. "Has dear mother-not have!" In 'The Son's Veto' the attitudes are intense on social differences among Sophy and her child and husband who are at a much-elevated class than Sophy.

  1. 'A central issue in Victorian novels is the place of women in society'. Discuss ...

    It is soon obvious that his friends agree with him so because they are of similar thinking. The opening of the novel depicts a meal at which both Sir James Chettam and Mr. Casaubon are guests of his, and they both seem to be similarly inclined as far as their

  2. Essay Topic: How does Dickens examine the social problems of his age in A ...

    I'll retire to Bedlam.'' This is one of Dickens examinations of the social problems within our world, presented through the character of Ebenezer Scrooge. You should look after yourself and only yourself in life, is the Last and final observation from Mr.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work