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Laughing at our Feet

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Laughing at our Feet An essay to show what is comic about the comic short story, 'Feet' "All the other courts are grass, out in the sun; Centre Court is between a science block and the canteen and when there is a Governors' Meeting the governors use it as a car park." Humour in this short story is brought up mainly by its extremely descriptive language, not only to illustrate its characters, but also surroundings and situations. This is a very common tool used by authors in order to captivate the attention of the reader and Jan Mark managed to do so in a very successful way. The language used is rather simple, but what makes it interesting is the fact that it's similar to the language we, teenagers, use, especially because the narrator appears to have approximately our age. "The sun only shines on Centre Court at noon in June and there is green algae growing round the edges." Jane is a typical adolescent, who is willing to do almost anything, like volunteering to be an umpire at the annual tennis tournament, just so that she could watch Collier, the boy she had a crush on, play. ...read more.


For instance when Jane says that the "thing coming down the tramlines and trying to walk on one leg like Richard the Third only all in white," was "Richard the Bride", a neighbour of hers called Carson; it doesn't help to explain the plot or anything, but it makes the description of the character more interesting to read. Carson is a very peculiar character who turns his ankle, gives evil winks and throws up, but is said, by Jane, to be a very kind person. If one stops to think for a while, one will definitely remember a person one knows who looks just like him. He seems to be the archetypal older boy who is forced by his mother to do humiliating things, such as help with the baby-sitting and ends up doing what he shouldn't, such as offering beer to younger girls; but funnily enough, in the end, he turns out to be a friend. Almost everyone knows someone like Carson. The last aspect that will be mentioned in this essay is the plot. A story about a girl who volunteers to be the umpire in a tennis tournament seems a little bizarre, and the fact that the plot revolves around the theme of feet seems fairly unusual; however, it's for reasons like those that it's so comical. ...read more.


Yet, when someone proves the opposite, then everyone agrees it is the opposite. What Jan wanted to say was maybe how vain society is and how it follows one who proves to be right. No one ever seems to find out things by oneself; they prefer to sit and wait for one individual to do so, so that they can decide to agree with it or not. In Jan's example, no one ever seemed to look at feet, until Jane tells them to, and everybody does. "There are lots of bones in the foot although you think of it as being solid - down to the toes, at any rate." Perhaps what the author was actually trying to say is that there are many things in the world that go unnoticed because society establishes them to be unimportant, or takes conclusions which are precipitated and without any real 'beddings', like thinking of the feet as one whole thing, when in fact it had numerous bones. Or perhaps, he was just trying to write a comic short story with a curious theme. What is successful about it is that it's humorous in its own, personal way and that from it we can create all sorts of sub-texts, some more serious than others, but all significant. ?? ?? ?? ?? Isabela Goulart -9A- ...read more.

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