Analysis of 3 texts on Family

Authors Avatar by kimberlytan96gmailcom (student)

Texts A, B and C are linked by the theme of family, with a particular emphasis on parents and their favourite pastimes. However, in terms of context the texts are fundamentally different. While B as a literary extract by Joanne Harris uses the theme of family to establish the characters and the setting of Le Devin in the novel, as seen in the portrayal of the protagonist, Madeleine’s father as quiet and distant in contrast to her loud and expressive mother, texts A and C have a similar autobiographical purpose, with Louise in the speech transcribed in A telling an audience about her multiracial background and Lee, in C, recalling his mother and the contrast between her bouts of confusion and her calm demeanour when she plays the piano. While the emphasis of C is on Lee’s mother, A and B are similar in that there is a focus on both parents. However, while both Madeleine and Louise’s parents come from different backgrounds, a more positive attitude is shown in A, with Louise’s parents having built and maintained a successful relationship, in contrast to B, as Madeleine’s parents are unable to see past their differences and ultimately separate.

In A, the relationship established between the speaker, Louise and her family is shown to be close, as seen in her use of the informal nouns ‘mum’, ‘dad’, ‘grandma’ and ‘grandad’ when referring to members of her family. Louise also alludes to her ‘mixed race background’, as shown in the proper nouns ‘Yorkshire’, ‘Lancashire’ and ‘Jamaica’. More importantly, however, is the positive attitude she has towards her cultural background. This is especially seen in the repeated use of the adjective ‘diverse’ and the noun phrase of ‘quite a mix’ to describe the differences between her parents’ tastes in music and food and the influence it has had on her, especially as Louise talks about how her father taught her mother to cook (‘pretty much taught ma mum to cook’, ‘…also taught to how to make good old English Sunday roast’). Such a positive attitude is also seen in the close relationships within Louise’s family, as she uses the laudatory adjective ‘fairytale’ to describe her parents’ first meeting, as well as her utterance that ‘they’ve been together ever since’. Louise also uses the positive noun-phrase ‘quite a high opinion’ to describe her grandparents’ view of her father and their approval of him, showing the easy relationship present between them.

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Because A is an autobiographical speech, Louise’s utterances are predominantly in the declarative form (‘I am from er mixed race background’, ‘He pretty much taught ma mum to to cook’). Text A as a semi-spontaneous speech also shows frequent use of simple contractions such as ‘and’, ‘so’ and ‘but’ (‘…but I was brought up in Yorkshire’, ‘and erm they met when he came to Yorkshire’, ‘so erm I’m used to quite a mix’), an indication that Louise is making up the words as she goes along.

There are also non-fluency features present in A which indicate that it ...

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