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

How does Bennett explore the 'ordinary, uneventful, desperate' aspects of life through literature?

Extracts from this document...


How does Bennett explore the 'ordinary, uneventful, desperate' aspects of life through literature? Alan Bennett's characters (in Lady of Letters, Her Big Chance and Bed Among the Lentils) possess similar qualities of being 'ordinary, uneventful and desperate' as their lives can be viewed as being dull, mundane and monotonous. Using dramatic monologue, not only is Bennett able to explore the different aspects of life, but also make it easier for us (the reader) to understand and ultimately appreciate the themes brought forward. The monologue style allows us to hear the biased views of the narrator as we are able to see through them and thus allowing us to empathize for the characters. Ordinary, uneventful and desperate are major aspects of life, just as much as love and death. To the 'naked eye', the three might appear to be mutually exclusive but in fact the word ordinary and desperate does have a connection. After all, it is normal to become desperate and when someone is constantly desperate, it totally becomes ordinary. Often, people are in denial and tend to hide the reality by slightly twisting it. The twist is only made more apparent cause of the fact that this is a monologue. ...read more.


Because the character Susan is an alcoholic we begin to see her problems and realize that not only is she lonely, but she is also desperate, sexually deprived, as a result she seeks sexual satisfaction from Mr. Ramesh. Moreover, Bennett also explores the uneventful life through loneliness which is also brought forward by the character's large appetite for self-absorbed gossips. The character Susan constantly gossips to us (the audience), about other characters such as Mrs. Shrubsole because she thinks is better that others and thus more intelligent. Therefore, the character Susan feels 'trapped' because she is too educated and is trapped by her intellect. The fact that they are 'talking in their heads' emphasizes the point that they are 'trapped'. The character Susan sees the absurdity of the lives of her society but cannot escape it, because she is not able to use her powers of analysis in her mind, trapping her as she in controversial in her mind. On the other hand, other characters are not as educated because they use clich�s which could be Bennett's device to indicating how dull and uneventful life can be for there is no sense of originality. ...read more.


Bennett explores the theme desperate by making Susan a pathetic character, we often feel pathetic for characters who are desperate. In Talking Heads, Susan is not a tragic hero because she suffers in silence and never realizes her goals as she challenges society only in her 'talking heads'. Her change in appearance represents her attempt to conform to the expectations of her society. Mr. Ramesh represents both her 'zenith' and 'nadier' in that he rescues her from her trap of alcoholism but then abandons her to the habit of Alcoholic Anonymous and the tedious routine of her life. Indeed her clothes symbolizes the pathetic nature of her supposed transformation, she is just as trapped at the end as she was at the start. Because she showed us her dream but never pursues it, this makes her pathetic and not a hero. There are many ways in which Bennett explores the different aspects of life, but the most important one is dramatic monologue as other devices such as self-revealing irony would not have been used if the story is not a monologue, subjective and biased. Bennett is also able to explore the different aspects of life by the title, Talking Heads, the only reason things only take place in your head is because you're lonely. Page 1 Taveephol Chardtumrong 12J - ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Alan Bennet 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 GCSE Alan Bennet essays

  1. Studying Two Alan Bennett Monologues.

    It was written in 1919 for a show that is ironically called 'Irene'. This is because the main character of the other monologue ('A Lady of Letters') is Irene. Doris cannot remember all the words. They are as follows: Verse 1 I once had a gown it was al-most new,

  2. In A Lady of Letters how does Alan Bennett sustain the audiences interest in ...

    she is ecstatic, the room is bright for example when she is in prison. Also her costume in the scenes where she is in prison is supposed to be brightly coloured to represent her mood. Although the prison setting is still quite empty her energetic and youthful behaviour adds to the setting and overall shows her to be happy.

  1. lady of letters monologue

    PM Margaret Thatcher has told the public that there is no 'society' and everyone should look after themselves something which Miss Ruddock has taken up quite happily. The movement of Miss Ruddock from her Isolated, small and dull house to a prison that seemed more colourful and bigger not only changed her personality but her whole life.

  2. A Lady Of Letters Essay

    "No longer a fish out of water... At least I know the rudiments... I can't see it coming to that, but still it's nice to have another string to your bow".

  1. Modern Drama - Talking Heads

    Many of those people exploit that though, and this simply leaves Susan in even more of a sorry state. Our image of Susan contrasts a lot to our image of Lesley, as Lesley mainly annoys the reader as she obviously believes she is more important than she really is, and very rarely accepts herself for what she really is.

  2. How believable did you find the transformation of Miss Ruddock in Prison?

    Furthermore, the reader realises that she is extremely observant and notices a lot of detail. In addition, when she takes a trip to London she notices how much dog mess there is about, "I spotted some on the pavement right outside Buckingham Palace".

  1. How does Alan Bennett mix comedy and tragedy? In two monologues look at structure, ...

    Also red.' This is humorous, as Graham is clearly very opposed to the colour red, probably because he wants to fault Mr Turnbull. The repetition adds to the comedy, as it is for the audience to laugh at Graham who is being so pedantic, and criticising things like red plates.

  2. 'Write a critical appreciation, in which you compare at least two of Alan Bennett's ...

    And perhaps Doris would also be better looked after if she had had a child who could look after her in her old age. Alan Bennett cleverly draws all these elements out when he writes and makes you think about them.

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