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How has Rita changed on the course of the play?

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English -Essay How has Rita changed on the course of the play? Educating Rita by Willy Russell reads almost as a modern day Pygmalion. Rita, the central character is presented as a coarse, ignorant working class woman. She is clearly a frustrated character; dissatisfied with most aspects of her life. Education becomes a means through which she escapes the boundaries of working class culture. The change which occurs in her life results in a literal transformation which affects her life irrecoverably. It brings opportunity and freedom yet Russell clearly implies it takes away the freshness and individuality which once marked Rita as an individual. Rita's dramatic opening "door swings open" in Act 1 set the tone for the scene which unfolds. She intially appears confident and coarse, a comic figure who sees the humour in her own life: "I'm always cuttin' hearin' aid cords ". However as the conversation develops between she and Frank, Rita's insecurities and needs become more apparent: "I wana discover myself". By her own admission she disguises the unhappiness in her life with humour : "I take the piss because I'm not, y' know confident". ...read more.


Rita views her education as being her life line: "He wants to take life away from me". At the beginning, even as the audience, we cannot see the change in Rita, but to her husband there is an immediate change because he can see that she has a different perception of the world. Rita has faith in her future by making a "choice" and sees it as her life, although Denny sees it as a smaller scale "Choice between Everton an' Liverpool" or "choosin' between Stork an' Butter". In Act 1 Scene 6, Rita went to see the play, Macbeth. She thought she was going to find it really boring, but she surprised herself, and she absolutely loved it. We can see here that changes come with her appreciation of literature. The comparison in Rita interested in Macbeth may symbolise the connection between their ambition in their lives. Macbeth wanted to become a King and he eventually accomplished his intention and to this extent, Rita is progressively changing and begins to have enthusiasm in Literature. The increased exposure to literature and the bredth of her reading, leads to a significant change of her view of the world. ...read more.


Rita manages to reach her goal and she does it herself by facing her demons, however Frank does not because he needs the push to be put forward. Rita changes her name to Susan near the end of the play as she thinks it's : "Prententious crap". Susan was her original name but she changed it it Rita from the Author of her old favourite books, Rubyfruit jungle. Since the time had changed and she becomes educated she amends her name back to Susan as she thinks its much formal. Rita also describes Rubyfruit Jungle as "crap" because now she has an advantage of reading complicated novels that she understands. Rita also changes her occupation from an ordinary hairdresser to a waitress in a bistro. As we can see Rita changes many things that effect her life in some way. My conclusion to this essay is that even though Rita has changed through the progress of going to Frank's tutorial, she has not got enough to make her enter the middle class culture. However education is the root that will soon bring her to a much greater position then she is at the moment. Rita realises this when her flatmate, Trish, was about to kill herself when she had education etc. As Rita has been changing Frank has changed slightly but not to the same extent. ...read more.

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