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"Educating Rita " begins with Frank searching frantically in his bookcase, muttering the names of famous authors under his breath as he searches for what we think tobe a book. However, to our surprise, Frank pulls out a bottle of Whiskyand...

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Introduction

"Educating Rita " begins with Frank searching frantically in his bookcase, muttering the names of famous authors under his breath as he searches for what we think to be a book. However, to our surprise, Frank pulls out a bottle of Whisky and pours himself a drink. This tells us that Frank perhaps has a drinking problem. Rita's entrance in the scene is an important moment. She knocks twice on the door although Frank yells at her to come in. Eventually she bursts into the room swearing and using common language (this is different with Franks very upper class English) " I'm comin' in, aren't I? It's that stupid bleedin' door. You wanna get it fixed!" This is very dramatic as we are made to wait for Rita's entrance and she doesn't walk into the room, as we would expect a student, having her first meeting with a teacher, to do. She tells Frank what to do. She is at the college because she wants to be and wants to do things in her own way. The main characters in educating are Rita and Frank. Rita is a working class person who is trapped in life and wants choice, she has little education and a poor job as a hairdresser and during the play she tries to break free ...read more.

Middle

This could be seen as a loss for her, but in moving beyond her working class background she gains in self-respect and self-confidence so that she is better able to handle the challenges of life. She loses her husband in trying to achieve this From what Rita says, they seem to get on well enough, but Denny doesn't understand her wish to be educated. He has a traditional view of the role of women and expects Rita to settle down and have children. When he discovers that Rita has secretly been taking the pill to stop herself becoming pregnant, he blames her behaviour on her desire to 'better' herself and burns her books. Later in the play Rita meets Denny with his new partner who is pregnant. Although Rita loses Denny it seems that she had outgrown him anyway, whilst he quickly forms a relationship he is happier with. In losing her job Rita goes from the skilled work of hairdressing to the unskilled work of being a waitress. However she seems to make the best of this change and finds the new people she meets, such as Trisha, interesting and exciting. When Rita gets back from summer school she has changed, she is more confident and she thinks she is educated. ...read more.

Conclusion

but when she joined in singing the song from the jukebox she saw her mother crying. Her mother was crying because they could have been singing a better song, and for Rita, singing a better song means getting a better education. Rita considers herself to be a half cast because she is the only one who wants an education and the only one who wants to be able to have choice; she is not working class nor middle class. The staging of the play, with just two actors, gives us chance to see the change in Rita from close up, without the distraction of other characters. It is easy to compare Rita of the first scene, promising Frank a haircut, with that of the last scene when she finally gets round to cutting his hair. It seems that Rita gains more than she loses as a result of her education. She has some of the rough, and possibly more original, edges of her personality knocked off, but the things she loses are no longer of great value to her. Scene 6 reduces Frank reduced to trying to contact Rita on the telephone. At the end of the play Frank is packing his books in preparation for his journey to Australia. He has been shaken out of his sleepy existence by his encounters with Rita, and is facing up to some of the unexamined problems in his own life. ...read more.

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