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GCSE: Mildred Taylor

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  1. To What Extent Does Mildred Taylor Portray T.J. as a Victim of the Times?

    The author uses this narrow perspective of T.J. to encourage the reader to realise that he is a victim of the times. This realisation is encouraged not through Cassie's opinion but because she cannot see this fact until nearing the end of the story. Cassie's view of T.J. is blunt, 'I didn't like T.J. very much,' and during the beginning of the book the reader is persuaded that T.J. is not a nice person as there is no evidence otherwise. As the book proceeds however, the reader can show more insight into details that Cassie overlooks.

    • Word count: 1735
  2. Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry

    Uncle Hammer lives in Chicago where apparently black men live on equal terms with whites. Therefore Uncle Hammer finds the atmosphere in Mississippi deeply oppressive. As you know Uncle Hammer has a hasty temper and is a dangerous visitor at times of racial tension. 'I'd be hanging from the oak tree over yonder!' This shows that Uncle Hammer believes that if he had treated Lillian Jean the way Mr. Simms treated Cassie he would be hanged, just because the colour of his skin.

    • Word count: 601
  3. The Chrysalids

    Wender's reaction to Sophie's feet being found out, she makes David promise to not tell anyone about Sophie's feet, but what is more important is that she unwittingly projects her fear, her sheer terror of her daughter's feet being found out by Joseph Strom's son through her weak ESP to David, who picks it up and is disturbed by the disproportionate amount of anxiety for one small toe, and it is only in hind-sight that he puts that day as the day his doubts starts, "It is in hind-sight that enables me to fix that as the day when my first small doubts started to germinate."

    • Word count: 3629
  4. TJ is an unlikable boy who has only himself to blame for the situation at the end of the novel. How far do you agree?

    For example, when he comes into school on the first day, he is wearing no shoes. Whereas the Logans have: "...New coats and books and shiny new packards." One of the reasons that TJ is such a troublemaker is that he had a socially deprived background and therefore I think he needs to receive the attention that his family never gave him. His families are poor sharecroppers on Granger land. Sharecroppers were black people who work on white land, and get a small percentage of the produce. They are weak and frail and cannot control TJ.

    • Word count: 1438
  5. Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry - Character of T.J. Examine the way Mildred D. Taylor presents the character of T.J. In your answer give your own views of T.J..

    A type of control which is obvious in Cassie's home. Great Faith Elementary School and Secondary School was one of the biggest black schools in the county, consisting of 320 students, seven teachers and a principal. Most of the family's children that worked on Granger land attended Great Faith. T.J. was no acceptation. He was in the same class as Stacey and Mrs. Logan was their teacher. T.J. was made to repeat the class again because he had failed his final exams the year before.

    • Word count: 6077
  6. What picture of Mississippi in the thirties do you get from " Roll Of Thunder, Hear My Cry"?

    In the novel by Mildred Taylor, the black children attend a school, which is far less equipped than Jefferson Davis is, which is the school of the white children. The black school is called Great Faith. The school is run-down and greatly deprived of essential resources and maintenance. This reflects on the lives and out come of the pupil, as the school can only teach to a certain level, the black dropout rate (which really can't be called drop out because they don't have much choice)

    • Word count: 2863
  7. Examine the writes' presentation of racism and their narrators' courage in the face of adversity in 'Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry and 'To Kill a Mockingbird'

    Racial prejudice is arguably the most prominent theme of both novels. In "To Kill a Mockingbird", several examples of this are demonstrated. Aunt Alexandra and Atticus argue over Calpurnia's position in the Finch home, and to some extent, it is suggested that Alexandra feels threatened and jealous of Cal, because she has more power over the children and is closer to the family than Alexandra herself. However, there is also an implication that Aunt Alexandra is racist towards Cal, a black, when she says: "...we don't need her now" She feels that their reputation will be affected if they associate with her, thus advising Atticus to let her go.

    • Word count: 3179
  8. 1930's Mississippi was a harsh place for black people.

    It might hurt y'all's little ears." None of the children, except Stacey really like T.J. And when he deliberately withholds information from them they get angry. When T.J. eventually tells the children what has happened the kids are shocked to be informed that: "Some white men took a match to 'em." This is the first incident of injustice we see in the book. The Berry's burning is a particular shock to the Logan boys and Cassie because they have been sheltered from the injustices that have fallen before and they aren't informed of the Berrys burning by there parents but T.J.

    • Word count: 1739
  9. Born in 1856 into a wealthy Philadelphia family, Fredrick W. Taylor

    Taylor's answer sidestepped the class struggle and interest group politics. He believed his principles would create a partnership between manager and worker, based on an understanding of how jobs should be done and how workers are motivated. These workers are motivated by money. He believed a fairs day work deserved a fair day bonus. He thought keeping his workforce happy would keep them producing at a high quality. He died in 1915, whilst on a speaking tour in the mid west he contracted influenza, he was admitted to hospital and celebrated his 59th birthday there and died the next day.

    • Word count: 1014
  10. Ladies and gentlemen of the court, I have been charged with investigating, and bringing to the attention of the court the entire background and character of T.J. Avery from an impartial point of view. These are my findings.

    T.J.'s mother questioned him about it she just said that he had gone up there to get Claude, who he said was sneaking up there to get free candy, Claude was beaten, he didn't tell his mother that it wasn't him. He shows these attributes again at the end of the school term, during exam time, T.J. had written some cheat notes, and when the teacher who happened to be Misses Logan, he gave them to Stacey Logan who is his friend, but before Stacey could hand them back, his mother saw that and interrogated him about it and then proceeded to punish him in front of the entire class.

    • Word count: 763
  11. Roll of thunder, hear my cry

    This was a time and place when thousands of families like Cassie were poor and considered the' lower, working-class'. As you go through the book, you find that Cassie discusses and questions certain issues; for example racism and growing-up. Generally people think that informal slang speech is wrong, but it is just an alternative version to the English language. The way a person speaks is often a way of revealing how educated a person may be. The general dialect spoken within a community is a part a community's identity, for example; the "cockney" language represents the people of southeast England.

    • Word count: 596
  12. Roll of Tunder Hear My Cry

    The black children at school generally did not get new materials and were usually old, rugged, ripped, and dirty. The whites at Jefferson Davis school normally got two buses to ride and to come back from school, while all the black kids at Great Faith had to walk to their school, and also walk back to home. The books the black kids got at school only had pictures of white children and people, and did not teach about any black history and slavery at all so teachers were not allowed to teach any of it.

    • Word count: 667
  13. Educational Memories

    In science we made a mess of all the experiments. I broke three beakers and two test tubes, once I squirted hydrochloric acid at the black board the mark is still there. My music teacher liked me because I was good at the essays and minor music tests. I scored a high mark in the music exam but I was awful at playing music. I blew up the keyboard adapter. We would throw water balloons at everyone in the winter and set of bangers at bonfire week. In food technology the teacher hated are cooking we never cleaned up after we had finished.

    • Word count: 834
  14. Discuss the theme of family life in Roll of Thunder Hear my Cry.

    The only thing that she is sure about, is her absolute loyalty to her family, which remains constant throughout the book. The Avery's a not very successful family, are one of the poorest black families. Mr and Mrs Avery have many children and not enough money. They sharecrop on the Granger's land and as they do not have much money, they also do not have money to spend on medicine, which as a result means that Mr and Mrs Avery remain in a constant state of illness.

    • Word count: 1074
  15. Consider the characters of Mary Logan in "Roll Of Thunder Hear My Cry" and Gilbert Dawson in "The Sexton's Hero" showing how they reflect the theme of heroism

    In fairy tales, the hero is usually a man who rescues the princess from evil. Over time the term hero has changed from the old fashioned traditional hero to modern hero's (someone who is heroic for standing by principles and suffering hardship as a result.) In The Sexton's Hero, Gilbert Dawson is more of a traditional hero because he saves Letty and the Sexton's life, but dies himself. He also has some of the qualities of a modern hero as he stands up for what he believes in.

    • Word count: 1461
  16. Write About Some Of The Different Ways In Which Characters In The Novel Deal With The Difficulties and Situations Which They Face. You Should Discuss At Least 3 Characters In Your Answer.

    Cassie does not understand why this is happening, and is very childish. At first, she asks politely what is happening, being inquisitive, yet innocent thinking that the shopkeeper has forgotten them. "Certainly Mr. Barnett had simply forgotten about TJ's order." "I think you forgot, but you was waiting on us 'fore you was waiting on this girl here..." After being ignored, she shows her true age and kicks up a fuss, resulting in being severely embarrassed. "'I ain't nobody's little nigger!'

    • Word count: 1413
  17. I took in a deep breath of the thick air that surrounded me

    Mama was crying 'It could be one of our children next.' I hate it when Mama is upset, I slipped down from the wall and lay in bed, and then I quickly hopped out and ran through to the room in which Mama sat on the chair with her head in her hands. She was sobbing away, Papa was trying his best to comfort her but it was going to take more than a cuddle to solve this problem. I ran towards her, 'Oh mama' I cried out, and as soon as I was in Mamas arms I let my tears out again, 'I don't want T.J.

    • Word count: 2572
  18. Comparison Between Roll Of Thunder Hear My Cry And The Son’s Veto

    The Logans are peaceful people who are trying to end the hate and help everyone get along. Even though they do not like some of the white people, they are nice to them. Some of the secondary supporting characters are the Simms; Mr. Simms, Lillian Jean Simms, and Jeremy Simms. The Simms were all white and prejudiced except for Jeremy who tried to be friends with the Logans. Mr. Granger was a man who leased out sharecropping land to black people and took almost all of their money after the harvest. T.J. Avery was the mischievous seventh grade boy who got everyone in to trouble with his conniving ways and pompous personality.

    • Word count: 1294
  19. How does the author create a sense of fear and threat at the end of chapter 3?

    Her brothers wouldn't be out of their beds outside in the dark at night time. 'Stacey', I whispered. 'Christopher-John?'. Cassie is not talking when she says this but is whispering because she is very cautious of who is there and who is making the noise. When a sudden movement is seen near the end of the porch Cassie heads toward it. This shows she is very brave and not scared to walk up there to see who it is. Fear is building up here because the author is keeping you in suspense so you have to wait a while to find out who is there.

    • Word count: 910
  20. Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry

    As the numbers grew, many whites began to feel afraid of rebellion. Strict laws were past about what the slaves could or could not do. They were denied all their personal rights and completely belong to and had to respect their owner. Roll of Thunder shows how slavery in a milder form still took place, with the blacks practically living like slaves on the white's land. They were even rejected the write to read or write in an attempt to avoid a revolt.

    • Word count: 2922
  21. What impression do you get from the novel of life in rural Mississippi in the 1930’s?

    It has abundant rainfall and the temperature is sometimes very unusual. Cassie had said in the first chapter that 'it seemed to me that showing up at school at all on a bright August - like October morning made for running the cool forest trails and wading barefoot in the forest pond was concession enough', and this would tell us what the weather was like. There were all sorts of changes to the climate like when 'thunder crashed against the corner of the world and lightening split the sky as we reached the road, but we didn't stop'.

    • Word count: 1575
  22. Compare how Charles Dickens and Mildred D Taylor portray the social and personal problems of the main characters in Roll of Thunder Hear my Cry and Oliver Twist. Who overcomes their problems more successfully?

    Towards the end of the book, TJ, a friend of Stacey's (Cassie's older brother who is around the same age as him) is involved in a robbery along with two white boys who lay he blame on TJ when they are later found out. A lynch mob then comes after TJ with the intension of hanging him. Mr Logan sets his cotton field on fire as a distraction and blacks and whites are momentarily united as they try to extinguish the fire.

    • Word count: 2270
  23. How does Cassie Logan become more aware of what life is like for black Americans living in Mississippi in the 1930’s?

    Little Man is upset and as the bus drives past, the bus driver and the passengers deliberately humiliated Cassie and the other children. We know this because they see; 'Laughing white faces pressed against the bus window' At another time they hear; ' Moronic rolls of laughter and cries of "Nigger!, Nigger! Mud eater" waffled from the Open window. When the children arrive at school for the first day Little Man is not happy about the condition of the books, as they are old and dirty and Little Man doesn't want it.

    • Word count: 2872
  24. Discuss the role played by Mr. Morrison in ‘Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry’

    Morrison: "The man was a human tree in height, towering high above papa's six feet two inches. The long trunk of his massive body bulged with muscles..." The living strength and permanence of trees are a symbol of the strength which the black community draws from its history, tradition and inheritance, and the 'roots' which have been put down in their land. Thus, the description of Mr. Morrison is in keeping with such imagery. The timing of Mr. Morrison's arrival assists Mildred Taylor in developing tension and suspense.

    • Word count: 596
  25. With Reference to at Least Two Incidents Described In The Novel, Show How They Illustrate the Persecution of Ethnic Minorities

    This made it hard to choose an incident as I thought the parts of the book that dealt with racism were all atrocious stories. The first incident I am going to talk about is when Cassie goes shopping in Strawberry. To her it is a great privilege to be going to Strawberry, but once she gets there her, she finally learns the reality about the feud between blacks and whites. However, she doesn't learn that the feud is that big between blacks and whites.

    • Word count: 1784

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