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

In the play 'Educating Rita', how does Willy Russell deal with the effects of education?

Extracts from this document...


EDUCATING RITA In the play 'Educating Rita', how does Willy Russell deal with the effects of education? In the play 'Educating Rita', education is presented from two main viewpoints: Frank's and Rita's. To Rita gaining an education is everything to her, so much so that she is willing to give up her life, as it was, and the security that it has brought. However it is this very life of hers that drives her to enrol at the Open University. To help us understand why she does this; Russell offers us a perspective into the lives of the working class. 'Cos by us there is no meanin' to life...There's like this sort of disease, but no one mentions it; everyone behaves as though it's normal.' This is the way Rita feels about those around her. It's the type of life that she herself has led, however Rita is aspiring to more, for a better life, one with more meaning to it. '...it's [education] providing me with life itself.' In Frank's case, education and literature seems to have done the exact opposite. ...read more.


After first encountering Rita, Frank's behaviour improves and he drinks less. However, as the play progresses, his intake of alcohol increases, so much that his students complain about him administering his lecture whilst drunk. Indirectly this is the affect that Rita has upon Frank. Their relationship forces what Frank has been subconsciously avoiding into the conscious, which effectively causes him to retreat further into alcoholism. After returning form Summer School Rita has gained enough intellectual confidence for her to be less dependent on Frank. Her social circle is widening and she is moving ahead with her life. Her weekly tutorial, which before helped her 'get through the rest of the week' is now not as necessary and she attends less. As Rita is moving on Frank becomes dependent on their meetings. Frank's anticipation for her increases, as he believes that he is losing her, which makes him bitter, 'You can hardly bare to spend a moment here'. He even becomes jealous, knowing that she is leaving him out of her life. It can be said that what is initially driving Rita is her desire for choice. ...read more.


Trish is another example to Rita that educated people do not have everything, including happiness. For Rita education has become everything to her, but Frank is intent on making Rita see that that shouldn't be the case. Frank relates himself to Mary Shelly, believing that he had created a monster in Rita. '...you've found a different song, that's all-and on your lips it's shrill, hollow and tuneless.' By the end of the play Rita finally realises what Frank had been talking about the whole time. 'I wanted it all so much that I didn't want it to be questioned. I told y' I was stupid.' What happened with Trish brought everything into perspective for Rita. We must remember that Rita has been where Frank has not. She has seen where she could end up, which is what inspires her in the first place to enrol at the university. Perhaps that is what Frank is missing, a real taste of the life that Rita left behind. The point Willy Russell is trying to get across can be summed up in this quote: Rita: Tch. Y'd think there was somethin' wrong with education to hear you talk. Frank: Perhaps there is. Act 1, Scene 2, page 22 Olabisi Showunmi Page 1 02/05/2007 ...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 Educating Rita 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 Educating Rita essays

  1. Educating Rita: How does Willy Russell present the development of Frank and of Rita ...

    Similarly, Rita begins making friends with the students at the Open University later on throughout the play. This is evident from when Rita says, "For students they don't half come out with some rubbish y'know" and when she says, "I've only been talkin' to them for five minutes and he's

  2. Willy Russell explores themes of education, relationships and social standing in his play "Educating ...

    As it is a classroom there should be shelves with books on, but the books should look untidy and un-kept rather like Frank. Bottles of alcohol should be hidden here also, maybe just visible over the top of books to show Frank's drinking problem.

  1. Educating Rita by Willy Russell

    and creating a new life for herself and nearly completed her journey to education. This shows Willy Russell's attitude to education through her and if you take the sacrifice in life to get your education then you can get it.

  2. How does Russell use the opening scene to prepare the audience for the rest ...

    Rita has put up with this naivety for long enough, her decision to seek education is obviously long term, even when she was at an under privileged school she wanted to learn but her class mates distracted her too much.

  1. Billy Liar - In this play how is Billy presented?

    His next fianc�e is Rita and she is completely different to Barbara. Rita is much more modern and attractive but from a lower class background. Billy would appear to have got involved with Rita more for the physical side of their relationship, and she does not particularly have any real feelings for her; it is definitely more about sex.

  2. In Educating Rita Willy Russell writes that education dives you a choice what changes ...

    an educated woman in Act2 then she needs to stop the old ways of the uneducated world. She made her own choice by not smoking. This scene is one of the time Rita made her choice. These choices not just made Rita decide by her own but it also changed Rita from the inside.

  1. 'Sara has got cobwebs between her knees,' said Frank Patel, one night.

    Thankfully, Frank's mum went back to the kitchen while Frank and I sat on opposite ends of the couch and Grandad, pretended to be dozing in his corner. But I decided to blot this peculiar family out and let Eminem take over.

  2. Why do you think Willy Russell chose a duologue form for “Educating Rita”?

    world, and they continually brought forward the fact of their places in society and how they could not change them. In the 1950's and 60's "kitchen sink Dramas" started to become very popular and common. The first was written by John Osborne and was titled "Look Back In Anger".

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