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GCSE: Geoffrey Chaucer

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  1. General Notes on Chaucer and the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales

    Chaucer set the style for such works (for some imitations click here). His first audience, hearing the opening lines of the General Prologue, may well have thought they were about to hear another elegant poem on aristocratic love. Indeed, the opening lines seem to echo the most famous dream vision of the time, Le Roman de la rose, which Chaucer translated into English as The Romaunt of the Rose, one of his first surviving works: That it was May thus dremed me In time of love and jollite That al thyng gynneth waxen gay For there is neither busk nor hay In May that it nyl shrouded ben, And it with new leves wryen.

    • Word count: 3388
  2. What are the arguments of the Wife of Bath in relation to marriage? How do you integrate her Prologue and her story into a coherent whole?

    as long as "[her] housbonde is fro the world agoon" (line 53) - according to her idea, it is of "no repreve" (line 90) and "withouten exception of bigamye" (line 92) to "wedde if that [her] make [dies]" (line 91). Despite the advices from other men, who "[keep on] [conseiling] [her] to be oon" (line 72), she is convinced that she does the right thing as there is no law that forbids her marrying, and whether to marry is up to her "owene juggement" (line 74)

    • Word count: 3319
  3. Creative writing - The Disappearance.

    (But surely that was his imagination-the linen had been washed already.) He had told the truth about them not having a quarrel, hadn't he? (He prided himself on being an honest man, he often told his son how important it was not to lie, see what happened to Pinocchio's nose.) And even now when the boy asked him where Mama was, he didn't say she had gone on a trip, as some of his friend's wives had advised him. "I don't know", he rejoined. And when the boy's thin face would crumple he held him in his lap awkwardly and tried to stroke his hair, like he had seen his wife do, but he couldn't bring himself to say what the boy needed to hear "She'll be back soon."

    • Word count: 6125
  4. How do Thomas Hardy and D.H. Lawrence portray relationships between men and women in "Her Turn" and "To Please His Wife"?

    We are told his 'naivety' makes him popular with the neighbouring women in 'spite of their prudery'. This shows that despite the woman's preconceptions, they can still find a man to be 'suitable'. He treats her with respect and gives her the money she needs for the housekeeping. We are told his 'wife did well' because he gives her money, but he does only give it to her when he himself doesn't need it, proving he is the priority in the relationship. She is described as doing 'well' from him, which indicates that other people's relationships are not as good as theirs.

    • Word count: 3044

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • Compare and Contrast Chaucer’s Presentation of the Monk and the Pardoner

    "In conclusion the actions and priorites are the only part of the Monk that are saterised, but the Pardoner is saterised for his whole way of life. Perhaps it is worth bearing in mind that out of the four pilgrims who work for the church only the Parson is praised for his work, this could be Chaucer's way of saying that he think the churches method of selecting workers is flawed."

  • Miller's Tale - Analyse the narrative structure of the tale and the effectiveness of its ending.

    "Overall the conclusion to the Miller's Tale makes the two men look thoroughly ridiculous and humiliated; Alisoun appears to get away with her crimes and comes away looking as 'clean as a whistle'. But the audience has seen every dark side to her character. The readers' interest is carefully maintained through a mixture of comedy, shocks, courtly love and ironic twists throughout the Tale. Chaucer makes the reader feel superior to the characters who seem somewhat disillusioned in their pathetic plight to get what they want without paying for the consequences. Nicholas and Alisoun plot to deceive the foolish carpenter of their nefarious doings. Absolon is blinded by his love for Alisoun, who cares nothing for him and constantly makes cruel jokes of him. All these elements help captivate the reader and pull them deep into the personalities of the characters. I noticed that infidelity seems to run prominently as the main theme throughout the tale. There are many more themes such as love, revenge and humour which all seem equally as important. I feel that the main point of the story is that actions have consequences, something the characters did not seem to grasp until everything around them began to fall apart. Stephen Blighe 5/2/2007 AS English Language and Literature"

  • Discuss how at least three authors during the mid to late Nineteenth Century explore conflict within the family. What are the family conflicts caused by? What are the results of the conflict?

    "Conclusion In the three short stories, the conflicts had been caused by marriage, fuelled by wealth to end up as disaster. The main reasons behind the conflicts are often over money problems and jealousy. The ending of "The Half-Brothers" seemed more tragic compared to the other two stories as it was an extremely emotional and symbolic story. This results in the sympathetic attitude of the reader towards this character. Similarly, all three of these stories ended in a sad dramatic way and they were all set around the same time. This may suggest that during that time period, it involved a lot of conflicts."

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