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GCSE: Educating Rita
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"If you want to make them listen, make them laugh" - What does Willy Russell want you to listen to and how effectively does he use humour to make that message appealing?
The school that Rita went to was much the same. "Broken glass, knives an' fights. An' that was just in the staff room." To learn properly Rita "would have had to become different" So instead she spent her free education buying dresses and records and "lookin' for a feller". Rita is unsophisticated, direct and blunt. When talking about art she does not use correct artistic terms, she just states what is in her head, "Look at those tits." She is a contrast to Frank as she is very up front with her feelings and does not appear to care what other people think of her.
- Word count: 2632
"Education gives you a choice." How does Willy Russell show this through changes made in Educating Rita.
This gives a clue as to what happens after the play has finished because it ends on Rita giving Frank a hair cut which doesn't lead anywhere. This would mean that Rita had got a good education. The similarities in Russell's and Rita's lives are so similar that Rita could go on to do great things much like Russell did. Rita starts the OU course because she wants to find herself, "I want to find meself". This shows that she doesn't know where she is going with her life.
- Word count: 1564
"The Son's Veto" and "Educating Rita" are set in very different times. Compare Sophy and Rita, and consider how their actions are governed by social expectations of women in each period.
Trying to be someone her son can be proud of. The way woman lived in the 20th Century is quite similar, yet still very different to the way Sophy lived her life. Take Rita for example, like Sophy, Rita is from the working class, and she too felt like she wanted to fit in with a higher class in order to be more comfortable. Women and girls of a working class had very few opportunities. Neither Sophy nor Rita were very well educated, although that is what they both seek.
- Word count: 2066
In 'Saved', all of the characters are non-existant in society's eyes; they are isolated by society. Society only associates with the characters when crimes are committed, as seen in both texts, and then we see societal punishment. "That inspector wants you." (page 75) In both 'Saved' and 'The Wasp Factory' it can be seen that even though the protagonists are isolated from society, friendships are still formed between characters. In 'The Wasp Factory' Frank, even though isolated through to his disability, still forges a friendship with Jamie, a dwarf. Frank is unable to form relationships with people who are seen as normal, be that able bodied, or mentally sound; so perhaps the only reason Frank is friends with Jamie is because he is disabled, just like Frank.
- Word count: 2118
These places change the relation between Frank and Rita for example when Rita went to summer school Frank found out that she is no longer dependant on him and she can work and carry on with her education independently. Frank is a fifty year old university lecture whose boredom and isolation have led him into being an alcoholic to alleviate his depression. Due to his excess drinking Frank has started giving Open University courses to cover his drinking cost, thus teaching Rita.
- Word count: 2191
How does Russell present the metamorphosis of his character Rita in Educating Rita? Discuss the dramatic impact of the change on you, the audience.
When Rita first goes to see Frank, she barges through the door, at first complaining about the state of the door handle, to Frank. "I'm comin in, aren't I? It's that stupid bleedin handle on the door. You wanna get it fixed!" Russell spells Rita's language as it is said to portray her strong accent. From Rita's entrance it surprised us. It is Rita's first day at the Open University and she barges in dressed like a tart. That is not the right way to make a good first impression.
- Word count: 1129
The choice of staging such a play in only one room makes everything seem important. The play is made more intimate and personal because there are only two characters ever seen. This selective choice of location for the scenes enables the audience to concentrate exclusively on the characters. The traditional Northern University is significant because it shows how times are changing. The University is opening to additional students, and not just the straight degree students. The Open University is enabling people to have a chance at education while other things go on at the same time.
- Word count: 4782
Franks clothing shown in the tracking shot and the long shot of the university, immediately makes the audience think that frank is not organised, thus reflecting on his job as a teacher. Rita's entrance through the dark arches creates the atmosphere of an alien new environment for her. The classical music plays a major role in creating a formal and serious atmosphere which contrasts Rita's crass and informal clothing. When frank looks for his whisky bottle, there is a close up shot of the books in the library, this shot enables us to see the book where the bottle is located.
- Word count: 1023
He establishes a firm link to reality by relating his life to Rita's, he also attended evening courses at an open university, and was a hairdresser before returning back to education. Rita and Russell were very similar in many ways. They both knew that there were two ways of dealing with their future. That they could both accept their life with no education and fulfill their destiny as a poor person, or they could reject this fact and try hard to get a better job, a better life, or like Rita's mother says, "A better song to sing".
- Word count: 1329
To what Extent is it possible to appreciate Educating Rita without understanding the literary references?
E.M Foster. Frank: Forster Rita: Oh yeh. What's it like? Frank: Borrow it. Read it. Even if you do not know Howard's end by E.M Forester you know that it must be a book for 'Educated people' since you know that someone like Rita would think it's a filthy book by some man called E.M Foster, and has never read it before. At the same time as educating Rita Willy Russell educates us. Another example of not having to know the literary reference is Rita's real name is Susan but she has changed her name for it to be the same as her favorite writer Rita Mae Brown the writer of Ruby fruit jungle, by
- Word count: 953
Describe the progress of Rita's education - What effect does becoming educated have on Rita and those closest to her?
This suggests to us that Rita has innate intelligence. Rita understands things but she just does not know how to express herself. An example of this when she defines "assonance" as "getting the rhyme wrong." Rita has some difficulties because she is not confident in her own ability and has low self-esteem. Rita uses humour to try to cover this up. In the beginning she finds it difficult to accept criticism, believing it to be an attack on her person, so whenever Frank tries to advise her about her work, she changes the subject.
- Word count: 2832
Poverty in any circumstance is an unfortunate situation, but seeing the supposed head of the household squander away the little earnings he makes is revolting. Alcoholism is a disease, and Frank's father doesn't even seem to try and fight it. Because of his father's lack of responsibility, Frank had to work as a telegram boy, giving part of his earnings to his family and saving the rest of it to move to America someday. He also found a job delivering coal with Mr.
- Word count: 1283
How would you perform the role of Frank in part one of the play? And what audience response would you hope to achieve through your performance?
Rolled up sleeves this can represent that he is working hard. Black shoes with a hole at the toe. His hair ruffled and uncombed. A black blazer, not smart, a few rip, just to make it look like he was trying to look like a non working class. > Gestures: When I first come on stage I would be walking with a broken posture. My back low but yet not to sloppy. In contrast to Are whose has an upright posture with a full frontal posture to the audience.
- Word count: 1041
The play Educating Rita, only has two characters, Frank and Rita, Rita wants to learn literacy, and Frank is her tutor.
This shows the audience that he his trying to hide his habit because perhaps he feels it is wrong, or perhaps he doesn't want to get caught drinking at work. Rita's first reaction to this habit was "y' wanna be careful with that stuff, it kills y' brain cells." This shows the audience that she might be a person who jokes a lot, but if she says it in a serious way, then it shows that she doesn't really like drinking, or that she is concerned for Frank, in case he throws his life away.
- Word count: 895
In this essay I will comment on why Rita wants to change and the devices that Willy Russell uses to show these changes to the audience.
Frank immediately assumes that Rita is speaking of the celebrated Welsh poet, Dylan Thomas, only to be told that she is, in fact referring to a poem by the contemporary Liverpool writer Roger McGough. Not surprisingly, Frank has to admit, "I don't think I know the actual piece you mean...". Rita's main reason for trying for an education is so she can have choice, she tells Frank that everyone thinks they have choice but they all think choice is deciding what drink to have or what to wear, Rita knows this is not choice, choice is something that will change her life.
- Word count: 1468
How do experiences of Sandra in 'The Darkness Out There' and of the narrator in 'Superman and Paula Browns New Snowsuit' change the way they see the world?
"They'd had a knife, they'd threaten to carve her up...two enormous blokes, sort of gypsy types". This is where she thinks the danger comes. "Kerry Stevens that none of her lot reckoned much on, with his blacked licked-down hair and slitty eyes". Sandra does not think much of Kerry, she doesn't know him well and judges him by the way he looks. "Some people you only have to look at to know they're not up to much". After Mrs Rutter tells the story of the German plane crash, Kerry expresses how he feels, " I'm not going near that old bitch again".
- Word count: 1348
Rita loves the room, and it's character. 'I like walkin' around this room' 'how d' y' make a room like this' 'I'm gonna have a room like this one day.' The room also says a lot about Frank, before he has even spoken. The audience knows that, like Frank, the room has things hidden in it. The bookcases concealing the whiskey, reflects Frank's literary shell, which tries to conceal the fact that he needs the drink. The room will change slightly, with Frank.
- Word count: 1647
He then pours some whisky into a mug, this suggests he wants to his alcoholism from his students or people who maybe be visiting him at work.. Plus Frank shouldn't be drinking in a University as it is, with students to teach. This shows that Frank is not particularly responsible, we learn more about this throughout the play. We also learn that Frank is in a marriage that he does not want to be in. This is shown from the telephone call from his wife,(above).Frank is very patronising towards Rita and talks to her as if he is better than her.
- Word count: 1765
She wants to be able to do things that other cultures do, and under stand opera and ballet. She wants to understand other ways of living. This play explains what Rita goes through to succeed in her passion for doing this and how she develops a close relationship with her tutor Frank at her Open University. This play was written at a time where women were looking for individuality and for ways to lead a more open lifestyle. Rita is a perfect example of a woman who is trying to reach this difficult ambition. She "wants to find out about herself" and see what sort of person she is.
- Word count: 1258
He warned her that if she didn't stop seeing Frank and didn't get off the pill, they would break up. The disagreement between both caused the rupture of their relation. (Scene 8 - p.69) I got home from work, he'd packed me case. He said either I stop comin' here an' come off the pill or I would get out altogether. It was an ultimatum. I explained to him. I didn't get narked or anythin'. I just explained to him how I had to do this. He said it's warped me. He said I'd betrayed him. I suppose I have.
- Word count: 3591
"Rita's education involves a lot more than just learning about books" - To what extend do you agree with this statement
At the beginning of the play, Rita studied the play Peer Gynt by Henrik Ibsen. In response to the question 'Suggest how you would resolve the staging difficulties inherent in a production of Ibsen's Peer Gynt',(Act one Scene Four) Rita first answered, 'Do it on the radio', which for her, encapsulated the whole essay. Later on this answer developed, adding arguments and opinions. We can tell Rita learned many things about 'Peer Gynt' because at the end of the play that same question appeared in her exam. We know this because she tells Frank about it: (Act two Scene seven)
- Word count: 1369
She also believes herself to be well read and thinks that she knows real literature. To show this she changes her name from Susan to Rita, which was chosen after the author Rita Mae Brown. She thinks this author is well known but actually she writes pulp-fiction books. This action illustrates Rita's lack of literacy awareness and misjudgement of what she believes is real literature at the time. Another problem which holds her back from being educated at the beginning is her family, especially her husband, Denny, who is absolutely against her taking the open university course and would prefer her to stay at home and start a family because that is what is expected of her at her age.
- Word count: 3457
They express admiration of each other e.g. "I think you're marvellous" p24 "You're my tutor. And I don't want another tutor." p26. I think that Frank sees him self in Rita he sees the days when wrote his poems and is envois of her passion for learning, she sees a well educated man and wants to be someday like him. They share experiences about their relationship she tell Frank about Denny and Frank tells Rita a little about his wife. At the end of 1:5 they go to the theatre together. They were going to go to a professional play but they then decided to do it in Rita style and they went to a
- Word count: 1781
The secondary purposes of the first chapter are to characterise and to evoke an atmosphere of mystification. In this first chapter we are introduced to Eric, Angus, Diggs, Jamie and most importantly we are introduced to Frank. It is important that we have been introduced to Frank, Eric and Angus as these will become the three main characters in the novel. The extract manages to evoke an atmosphere of mystification as the use of the definite article at the beginning of the novel assumes that the reader has prior knowledge of what Frank is talking about. For example, when Frank first spots the policeman he is able to name him.
- Word count: 1302
Educating Rita - Select the three scenes you find the most powerful and poignant and explain why they are so powerful
Rita is not as self-assured as she is in later scenes as she is still learning how to cope and do the things she wants to do. Like going to the theatre and reading certain books. She is not certain whether she wants to finish the course or not, as she still is not sure if she wants to leave the life she lives, the one of being uneducated and ignorant. This is because she finds it easier to fit in with the people and the culture she already knows.
- Word count: 1488