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International Baccalaureate: World Literature

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  • Peer Reviewed essays 10
  1. Textual analysis on "The Blindness" by Jose Saramagio

    “The blind moved as one would expect of the blind, groping their way, stumbling, dragging their feet, yet as if organised, they knew how to distribute tasks efficiently...” (pg.61) Throughout the novel, these concentrated and dull structure creates a heavy feeling, therefore, creating a distanced effect as if no one is alive.

    • Word count: 573
  2. Cloning and Human Dignity in "Never Let Me Go" by Kazuo Ishiguro.

    In chapter six of Never Let Me Go, the diction supports and aids in the development of the theme. Particularly when the narrator, Kathy, shares the thought process of the children, aged nine and ten, during a disheartening experience at Hailsham. “So why had we stayed silent that day . . . so cruelly for bringing it all up that day after the rounders match” (Ishiguro 69). Ishiguro utilizes a collection of literary devices to enhance the understanding of the students and their inner thoughts. The author's placement of a rhetorical question at the beginning of the passage aids in the conveying of perspective and promotes thinking, prior to the insight gained regarding the inner thoughts of the children.

    • Word count: 750
  3. Stranger in the Village Analysis Notes

    like how the Empire State Building means something to Baldwin but not the villagers = Culture clash Paragraphs 10-13 * The theme of “The stranger in the village” is conveyed through Baldwin’s reaction, he also says that white men are always in a state of rage and they are excluding the black people from the community * Opposition between black and white : * He is no longer protecting the feeling of the villagers but he talks about the African Americans and doesn’t protect the woman’s feelings anymore instead he portrays rage and hatred towards the white man because of the dehumanization.

    • Word count: 1057
  4. Senses and Sensuality in "Intimate Apparel" by Lynn Nottage.

    through the cluster of word of senses and touch as well as the alliteration of [s] sounds which represents sensuality that the effect that Esther’s hand and the sense of touch have on Mrs. Van Buren. Through the sense of touch, Esther creates a sense of sensuality between her and Mrs Van Buren. In the play, Mrs Van Buren suffers from the physical distance between her and her husband, which results in her tensing at the feeling of Esther’s touch. The alleged closeness between Mrs. Van Buren and Esther is also built through the letters sent to Esther by George.

    • Word count: 3646
  5. Coyote and the Enemy Aliens is a satirical commentary that explores the employment of language as a weapon to manipulate societal stereotypes; contemplating its ability to eradicate communal bonding.

    They corrupt society and alienate Japanese by legalizing this crime via a paper? Order -in- council 469?(57). King satirizes this notion depicting how an inefficient dimwit like Coyote obtains immense power via his legalization as the? Custodian of Enemy Alien Property? (57) by white-men. King compares the destructive capabilities of ?legal? to ?White magic? (59), constructing an image of white politicians using ?magic? to hypnotize society. The white-men assert a tag of ?Enemy Aliens? to Japanese, which is ironic as most of them were Canadian citizens. This irony elaborates on the immense manipulation of language by the government as it used ?white magic words? to imprison its own citizens.

    • Word count: 1377
  6. Comparing Sealand and Waknuk in "The Chrysalids"by John Wyndham

    Often they were shut off still more by different languages, and different beliefs. Some of them could think individually, but they had to remain individuals. Emotions they could sometimes share, but they could not think collectively. When their conditions were primitive they could get along all right, as the animals can; but the more complex they made their world, the less capable they were of dealing with it. They had no means of consensus. They learnt to co-operate constructively in small units; but only destructively in large units. They aspired greedily, and then refused to face the responsibilities they had created.

    • Word count: 754
  7. In Wyndham's "The Chrysalids" Sealand or Waknuk, which is the desirable society?

    Discrimination is a huge part of what makes Waknuk society so intolerant. They believe that everything should abide by the "True Image of God" (Wyndham 17-20). An extremely biased opinion, where everything should be one way and anything different is considered a deviation and must be banished or destroyed. This results in many people being exiled to the Fringes and animals and livestock destroyed, leading to a fear of being or having deviants or offences. This is also the main problem that David and his friends have, as they are considered deviants because of their ability. Sealand however completely has this flipped. "'The kind of people that God intended, perhaps?' . .

    • Word count: 749
  8. How far and in what ways is Pat Barkers reader invited to challenge the accepted norms in Regeneration ?

    An interesting aspect of his point of view is that his reluctance to go back to the front is never explicitly stated, but manifested through his early mutism and his avoidance of a clear answer when asked: ? ?Do you think you?re fit ?? ?I?m not a doctor.? ?. This is contrasted to a will to prove his virility and self-worth, both to himself and his father: ?When all this is over, people who didn?t go to France, or didn?t do well in France - people of my generation, I mean - aren?t going to count for anything.

    • Word count: 1402
  9. (Love song, with two goldfish) is a poem written by Grace Chua, it is about the relationship of two goldfishes.

    indicating he is attracted to her and giving him a shallow demeanor. Contrastingly, his lover ?darts/behind pebbles? (9-10), indicating she is near the bottom of the bowl. She ?swallows/his charms hook, line and sinker,? (10-11) this contrast of deep and shallow reflects their love and how their relationship is viewed from different angles, but what can he do he was hooked. The male fish just ?float[s]? (2) and ?wish[es]? (3) unlike the female fish who ? makes? (8) and ?darts? (9), the juxtaposition of their effort and actions explains their failing love, one is passive and the other active.

    • Word count: 693
  10. Prose Analysis on The In-Between World of Vikram Lall by Moyez Vassanji

    nature of what is going on inside, is described as a ?some celebration.? This subtle disconnection from the town, shows the reader that the narrator has insufficient knowledge of the celebration observed. This was done to signify the power of understanding all religions and their culture. Immediately, Vassanji mentions to the audience of a religious division that plagues the people of the town. Religion is the first major theme introduced to the audience as though to allude to its significance and its tense effect it has on the town.

    • Word count: 1211

"The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page"

-St. Augustine

If you loved Crime and Punishment, and your favourite books tend to be those that transport you to faraway places, then you'll probably enjoy the world literature component of IB English Literature. The course teaches you to analyse literary works from many different time periods and cultures, so you'll get the chance to read translated literature alongside English literature.

To do well, you'll need to be able to construct complicated literary arguments in writing. If you would like some practice first, study Marked by Teachers collection of student-submitted IB world literature essays. The teacher-annotated papers will give you all the tools you need to earn top marks: you'll soon see the difference in your writing.

Students who excel in this course should consider studying English literature or a modern foreign language at the university level. When applying to these courses, having good marks in higher level English will be very helpful indeed.


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?
  • Disgrace. Compare and contrast David and Lucys reaction to the attack in chapters 12 to 14

    "To conclude I would say that David and Lucy's reaction to the attacks could not contrast more. Where David appeared to be scared and Lucy put on the brave front, David was the one who was strong for them both, going to the market etc, whereas Lucy was finding life after the attack very difficult, 'her thumb in her mouth like a child.' However, Lucy does not want the attack to be known to the public, she wants to move on, forget the past, but David wanted revenge on the attackers. Lucy's attitude towards the attack suggests that she felt guilty for the mistreatment of blacks and felt this was her punishment, whereas David's beliefs that change shouldn't happen were stressed by the attack."

  • To what extent does Ibsens Hedda Gabler update the conventions of Greek tragedy that can be found in Euripides Medea?

    "To conclude, throughout this essay I have attempted to show and explain how Ibsen, in his play Hedda Gabler, has updated and twisted the conventions of Greek tragedy that can be found within Euripides' classic tragedy Medea. I have examined how the death of Hedda, in particular the location and reaction to it, utilises and manipulates convention to create drama and enable the audience to draw their own conclusion from the action. The nature of the Thespian Loevborg, and how Hedda lives through him, shows how Medea's character has been twisted and changed, that Hedda is no longer seeking revenge and equality, in the perhaps two dimensional Euripidean world that Medea inhabits, but also control and success. I believe that there are many ways in which Ibsen has updated the conventions of Greek tragedy, and that it is the use of farce throughout that presents this text as a truly modernised Greek tragedy. 1 Ibsen, Henrick, Hedda Gabler, Methuen Drama Student Editions, 2002 Methuen Publishing Ltd. P. 76. 2 Hedda Gabler, p. 99 3 Euripides, Medea, Cambridge University Press 1999, l.840 4 Hedda Gabler, p. 45 5 Medea l.298 6 Hedda Gabler, p. 37 7 Hedda Gabler, p. 104 8 Medea, l. 88 9 Hedda Gabler, p. 64 10 Medea, l. 398 11 Hedda Gabler p. 95 12 Hedda Gabler p. 99 C. Wild"

  • Who do you think is responsible for Gregor's fate? To what extent do you think he is responsible?

    "Mr. Samsa lacks the qualities of a caring father, which is the central reason for Gregor's death. With enormous responsibilities at a young age, his life even before the metamorphosis is the life of a beetle. Much of this has a lot of to do with Kafka's strained relationship with his own father, who he describes as "huge, selfish, (and an) overbearing businessman," in his Letter to his father. Although this is not the reason why Kafka died, it sure is the reason why Gregor dies."

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