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

A Literary Commentary: the L-Shaped Room

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

A Literary Commentary At rock-bottom, pregnant, in a dark, dirty room, and sharing the building with prostitutes, one may still (surprisingly!) have thought to spare in noticing the irony of their situation. The extract from "The L-Shaped Room," by Lynne Reid Banks, is taken from page 1 of chapter 1, so even without reading, it can be understood that the purpose of it is to 'set the scene' and introduce the main character, or at least provide an interesting and grasping introduction to the novel. It is not too clear if there was a definite intention other than that in three paragraphs, but there is a substantially big revelation in relation to the narrative character at the end of the last paragraph, that she was pregnant. The extract takes readers into the mind of that woman as they read her thoughts in relation to the place she is in and the people ...read more.

Middle

Finally, and very subtly, what highlights the reader's overall impressions of the place and people is that "Just because you don't ask questions ... doesn't mean you're not curious," which gives the impression that eyes follow her in that place and that judgment is made, enhancing the negative qualities of the space. The use of pathetic fallacy in the extract mirrors the feelings of the character with her sordid surroundings, and since space description predominates, consequentially, so does that of her character. The "greyish sort of day," "dark brown wallpaper inside and peeling paint outside" and "old ink-written notice" show to be very effective as an indication of her feelings. The passage seems rather bleak and the reader's feelings are those of the character, who seems very depressed, and there might even be sympathy for her being in such a horrible place, which also accentuates a certain difficulty of the condition, aided by her pregnancy. ...read more.

Conclusion

The fact that it is narrated in first person is significant as it approaches the reader to the character as there is no 'wall' (third person narrator) in between. However, this also implies that the written point of view is subjective to her character. There is no change of pace or anything too remarkable about it in the extract, probably because there is negligible action, added to the fact that moderately lengthy, dull and slow descriptions with a hint of irony reflect her present life. It might be the character's apathy or the place's weariness that provides us with the impression of an unhappy period, but the various hints of her acceptance towards such life shows us the character does not want, or need, sympathy, and one might be led to believe she is independent or even stubborn. In other words, she can take care of herself. ?? ?? ?? ?? Hannah Steinitz ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Languages 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 International Baccalaureate Languages essays

  1. The development of Lucy Honeychurch in a Room With a View

    He thinks of Lucy as a painting of Leonardo. But With the knowledge that Lucy has harbored within her from Italy, she feels that she should have equality with the man she loves. Therefore, she gradually emerges from the mysterious painting of Leonardo, starts to think for herself and develops

  2. English Commentary

    Do you see it? Catch hold of it. HUMPF! I'll try again. HUMPF! He was too far. But the sight of the lifebuoy flying his way gave him hope. He revived and started beating the water with vigorous, desperate strokes. 'That's right! One, two. One, two. One, two. Breathe when you can. Watch for the waves. TREEEEEE! TREEEEEE! TREEEEEE!'

  1. Passed On commentary

    They no longer hold the answers to all of life's questions and the poet finds herself answering a lot of these herself. Gradually her insecurities begin to fade. Instead of blindly following her mothers views, she begins to use her own and she as she finds the strength to loosen from her mother's 'urgent dogmatism'.

  2. "August Houseplant" Commentary

    This tone of anxiety is parallel to the tone a protective parent would feel for his child, which ironically, we reject entirely: Levertov has established that the plant is wild, large and already displaced out of its home when in the protagonist's backyard, yet if the protagonist brings the plant

  1. The use of literary techniques in the extract, Killed at Resaca, by Ambrose Bierce

    His own views are the influence of the direction in this extract and are very clear by the way he perceives women and by which he measures bravery and honour. The use of irony in the passage is shown as the two contrasting ideas, heaven and hell, are a significant

  2. Poetry Commentary "Carpets"

    The social injustice of the amount of time spent by the girls working constantly occurs in both poems too, "Carpet-Weavers, Morocco" talks of the "school of days" which creates an effective image of the long arduous time spent bent above the "knots" and "Ispahan Carpet" repeats the words "one hundred" to a similar effect.

  1. The Canonization - Commentary

    now been removed, as it is likely the upper class wouldn't have associated with the life of a person from a lower class. This thought is confirmed by the line 'or ruined fortune flout' which indicates he has lost the fortune he used to have.

  2. Literary analysis on September 1, 1939 by W.H. Auden

    The poet suggests that this neutrality is transitory, as ?no one can live for long; in an euphoric dream?, where the breaking of the ?euphoric dream? represents the end of people?s false hope that they can remain neutral forever. Imperialism or military aggression is also condemned as morally ?wrong? with the potential to cause serious detriments.

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