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'The Darkness out there'.

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English assignment Wider reading by Julhaz Miah Penelope Lively is a well known author who has written many books for both adults and children. She was born in 1933 Cairo but moved to england when she was twelve. She still lives in England and has two grown up children. Penelope's books are short deceptively simple and often end unexpectedly. This story 'the Darkness out there' was published in 1984. it is about two young people who go to help an old lady but leave shocked after several chilling revelations. The children are members of a neighbourhood help club that around the neighbourhood doing menial jobs for old people. The significance of the title and the ambiguity of the title is that literally ''the darkness'' can mean the darkness of Packers End but metaphorically it could refer to evil of Mrs. Rutter. To aid this theme of ambiguity ''out there'' is used as it is unspecified and could literally mean out there in the world or metaphorically inside everyone's mind. The story begins with Sandra on her way to Mrs. Rutter's cottage. She walks through lovely beautiful meadows, everything is lush and glorious until Sandra approaches Packers End now suddenly the mood changes. The atmosphere becomes spooky and eerie. As she begins to describe Packers end with elements of the supernatural e.g. ''You can still hear voices'' and the word ''darkness'' is used to add a streak of evil. ...read more.


She tells the story from a neutral point of view, and through mainly one character mostly through Sandra. She thus portrays a clear image of the scene in the reader's mind, and makes the reader imagine and feel the situation, as if the reader is a part of the story which indirectly involves the reader. The purpose of Sandra and Kerry's visit to Mrs Rutter's cottage is because both are members of a good neighbour's club and their job is to go to the elderly to help them and look after them. The narrative opens by observing Sandra from the outside by describing her actions and giving a clear image of Sandra's attitude. "The would walk like this through the silken grass with the wind seething the corn and the secret invisible life of birds beside her in the hedge." The observation of Sandra from outside and the way the writer describes her makes the reader feels as if he or she knows Sandra or has met her before. She also tells us what Sandra is thinking. "She would fall in love and she would get a good job and she would have one of those new singers", as a result of this style of writing, is that it the reader is afraid of the same things as Sandra and they also have the same impression of people Sandra meets. ...read more.


This is a pathetic fallacy of her tacky, public personality and the dark descriptions of Packers End are pathetic fallacies of Mrs. Rutters sinister alter ego, I believe this is a classic case of the DR Jekyll and Hyde syndrome but in this case the potion is a combination of the death of a loved one and the xenophobic anti German propaganda that was being spread during the war of which the result is Mrs Rutter. We already start to see that Mrs. Rutter is far more clever and perceptive than she seems, she sees that by complementing Sandra she can get her to do what she wants, "Like bees round a honey pot, they'll be" "The girl blushed" Mrs. Rutter makes several distasteful comments like this. We can see that Mrs. Rutter's compliment hit the spot because Sandra then admires her young body. But Mrs. Rutter also understands that she cannot do this to Kerry, so she puts him in the garden and does not warm to him as she has done so with Sandra in fact she behaves in a patronising and rude manner towards him. From this we can see that she is prejudiced towards people she cannot manipulate. Another prejudice, other than the xenophobia she exhibits, is that she is also sexist towards them by giving Sandra traditional women's housework such as ''cleaning and dusting" and gives Kerry a tradional strong man's job in the garden such as "taking the bin out and weeding the garden. ...read more.

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Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

The title of this essay and of the story under review are the same, and there is little guidance concerning the aims of the essay in the introduction, so we are lacking criteria to judge the writer's achievement. However, character analysis and the language techniques of the author are conducted perceptively. The conclusion is short and does not fully summarise the findings of the essay.

Paragraphs are mostly logically constructed, with the exception of the mid-paragraph carriage returns that occur frequently. Sentence construction is often flawed, with errors of grammar and punctuation.

3 stars.

Marked by teacher Jeff Taylor 24/10/2014

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