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

How does Willy Russell explore the themes of class and society in Blood Brothers?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How does Willy Russell explore the themes of class and society in Blood Brothers? Willy Russell explores how class can make a big difference to society and people's lives in the play Blood Brothers. Blood Brothers is set in Liverpool during the 1980's. During the 20th century unemployment and poverty was high which lead to a massive gap between the rich and poor. Willy Russell can relate to this as he himself was born outside of Liverpool and was of the working class. The class divide also meant the education of children would suffer as grammar schools were free however the working class must past the lit to gain entry. The pass mask was deliberately made high so the working class cannot go grammar school. This maintains the social system. I will explore in this essay the characters actions, dramatic techniques structure and context through social class and injustice. Willy Russell shows the divisions of society in many different ways. Firstly he starts with Mrs Johnstone. She is quite poor and works for Mrs Lyons. The theme superstition implies that something bad will happen for example there might be a loss. Nothing will ever change what would happen. At times when superstition is used a bad feeling or threatening feeling is left which creates tension. Mrs Lyons uses this to persuade Mrs Johnstone to give her one of the children. Mrs Johnstone is clearly superstitious, shown by her reaction to Mrs Lyons placing some shoes on the table. "New shoes on the table, take them off..." ...read more.

Middle

However, it is noticeable that the policeman is not concerned with informing the Lyons of Edwards actions but more interested about making himself look good in front of someone who is of higher class than himself. The fact the policeman has no demeaning comments for Mr and Mrs Lyons proves this "He's a good lad". The policeman is noticeably lower in class than Mr Lyons, so Will Russell again shows the difference in class from upper class, to working class and finally to lower class. Dancing is a theme used in "Blood brothers" regularly by Mrs Johnstone. Every time that dancing is mentioned something bad takes place. Dancing is a symbol of happiness but this happiness only lasts for a short period of time. After the happy period there is a bad occurrence. At the beginning of the play Mrs Johnstone is singing about how she used to go dancing and her husband compared her to Marilyn Monroe. "He told me I was sexier than Marilyn. And we went dancing" shortly after this was mentioned Mrs Johnstone mentioned that he ran off with a girl who was compared to Marilyn Monroe "Me husband, he'd walked out on me, a month or two ago, for a girl they say who looks a bit like Marilyn Monroe". This confirms that once dancing is mentioned something bad will happen or something will go missing. There is dancing and Mickey loses his mind. When dancing is mentioned it is also linked with Marilyn Monroe, "It seems like jail's sent him off the rails, Just like Marilyn Monroe, His minds gone dancing, Can't stop dancing" As Marilyn Monroe and dancing were both mentioned Mickey lost his mind. ...read more.

Conclusion

the narrator also creates an atmosphere and keeps people in suspense throughout the play. Russell's overall message is to treat others in a good way and that class does affect life and it does affect people. He clearly shows that everyone needs protection and the difference in class has a difference in protection. For instance Mickey has a gun to protect himself, whereas Edward has money to protect himself. Russell wants to also show that there is always something more desirable in another class and that money cannot by happiness. In "Blood brothers" Russell depicts his own life so may be biased towards the lower class and against the upper class. Mickey had far less opportunities than Edward, this led Mickey into a life of crime, which leads him to a depressed life and added to his jealousy of Edward. Edward attends a private school, university and has many opportunities so he obtains a good career. The lower class can't afford to go to university and do not have many opportunities. The fact the twins have the same blood but are very different and have had very different experiences shows that class can mould people and change them for better or worse. If Edward was left with his mother and if he lived in poverty would he have turned out like Mickey or would he have been differently. Perhaps another point Russell is trying to make is that who you are is who you will always be and wealth or poverty would not change you or that wealth can change a person and they might become shallow and obsessed with money. ?? ?? ?? ?? Kiranpreet Johal 10SG English Miss Handa ...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 Blood Brothers 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 Blood Brothers essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    HOW DOES WILLY RUSSEL BUILD UP DRAMATIC TENSION AT THE END OF THE PLAY ...

    4 star(s)

    the town hall, and there are councillors and other people as well as Edward. This shows that Mickey doesn't care about the consequences of his actions. This would also be used to heighten the dramatic tension in the final moments of the play.

  2. How has Willy Russell portrayed Mrs. Johnstone and Mrs. Lyons in Blood Brothers? How ...

    We see her desperate side as she says that you have to swear on a bible, then we see that she is very pushy and selfish, when she says to Mrs. J that she wants the baby right now, this could mean that she doesn't want her to get attached to the baby, making it even more hers.

  1. Blood Brothers - The Narrator

    I can understand now why people see him as a figure of doom; it was because of his words. But these words were his only way of making the two women pay for what they had done, and underneath it all I can see a person who is filled with

  2. In 'Blood Brothers' we discussed how the narrator affects the play and how the ...

    his voice (because he's talking to the floor), and the audience can't see his face so they can't see his expressions. * The group used the stage well (proxemics) by having Jack entering from the right, Ben entering from the left and Jack moving away to the audience to change the clock.

  1. Compare how Willy Russell portrays the two mothers in Blood Brothers. Account for the ...

    Lyons who is desperate to be transferred somewhere else. Furthermore, Mrs. Johnstone becomes aware of Edward moving and gives him a locket with a picture of herself and Mickey. At this point in the scene, the audience will feel sympathetic towards Mrs.

  2. What techniques and devices does Willy Russell use in 'Blood Brothers'? How effective are ...

    Willy Russell uses this in 'Blood Brothers'. He uses songs, a narrator, characters, plot, staging as a way of distancing 'Blood Brothers' from real life. Willy Russell uses songs to move the action on (condenses time). An example of condensing time is when the narrator sings when Mickey, Edward and Linda are caught by the policeman.

  1. Blood Brothers- How does Russell display to his audience the ways that class affects ...

    you pay today... I'll be forced to cut off your deliveries."- Page 6 She has had a hard life and is compared to that of Marilyn Monroe. Russell uses Monroe as an icon in the play and compares Mrs Johnstone to her as both of their lives were very tragic.

  2. Examine how Willy Russell presents the nature/nurture debate in Blood Brothers.

    This was when Mickey had been thrown into the 'real world' and was forced to grow out of their childish games and dreams as he now had a family to think about and the worries of never finding a job or bringing home food.

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