Macbeth Homework questions

So You have now copied out all the notes on Macbeth and know everything about the man and his crazy wife. Here are two questions for you to have a go at over the holidays. Fun times for you!

1. “Concealment and discovery are central to any drama.”
Discuss the structural and thematic significance of “concealment and discovery” in Macbeth.

2. “The great tragedies stamp themselves on the imagination through a series of powerful theatrical images in which the whole meaning of the play can sometimes seem to be compacted.”
Discuss the effectiveness of theatrical imagery in conveying meaning with reference to Macbeth.

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde sample class essay

Choose a novel which explores an important theme. Show how the author has explored this theme.

Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is a novel which explores the theme of good versus evil. We can look at how Stevenson develops this theme through his characters Dr Jekyll, Mr Hyde and Mr Utterson.

The first time we see the theme of good versus evil is in the first chapter when a mysterious figure, Hyde, tramples a child in the street and shows no remorse. The text tells us that ‘the man trampled calmly over the child’s body and left her screaming on the ground’. The word ‘trampled’ tells us how he walked over the child, the word ‘calmly’ makes this seem evil though because he is not bothered about his actions, even worse he ignores her ‘screams’ – a clear sign that she is in pain. This shows us Hyde is evil as a normal person would react to the injured child and help her and apologise – Hyde does none of this showing he is bad.

Another way in which the theme of good versus evil is explored is through the setting of Dr Jekyll’s house – the front represents Jekyll and the back Hyde. We are told Jekyll’s house has a ‘comfortable hall… warmed … by a bright open fire, and furnished with costly cabinets of oak’ whereas we are told the lab is a ‘certain sinister block of building’. Jekyll is quite a jolly person and we see this in his house – it is ‘comfortable’ meaning relaxed, it is ‘warmed’ suggesting it is inviting, and it is ‘open’ which bears connotations of an open personality. Hyde on the other hand is secretive and deformed which is encapsulated in the adjective ‘sinister’ to describe the lab. The front of the house represents Jekyll and therefore goodness and a good reputation and the lab represents Hyde and evil.

A third way in which we see good versus evil developed as a theme is when Hyde brutally murders Carew in public and in cold blood. We are told Hyde behaved ‘like a madman’ and we get a graphic description of Hyde with ‘ape-like fury’ ‘trampling his victim underfoot, and hailing down a storm of blows, under which bones were audibly shattered’. The simile at the start, ‘madman’ tells us he is psychotic and uncontrollable. This is reinforced with the second simile of ‘ape-like fury’ – he is animalistic. The description at the end is nauseating, we can easily picture and hear what is happening. The strength of the attack is given in the word ‘storm’ – Hyde is raging at Carew. This develops the theme of evil as Hyde’s attack was unprovoked, his reaction is instinctive and spurred by frustration, he does not think he merely acts on his whims.

Mr Utterson contributes to the theme of good versus evil as he attempts to protect Jekyll’s reputation through investigating Mr Hyde – there are several points where he should involve police but hides the truth instead. Mr Utterson realises Hyde and Jekyll have the same handwriting and he says ‘Henry Jekyll forge for a murderer!’ before his ‘blood ran cold’. This tells us that Utterson is scared for his friend, Jekyll’s compliance in faking Hyde’s writing shows he sides with the murderer. This shows us good versus evil as Jekyll has made the wrong decision in siding with Hyde and we see him sliding down the spectrum of behaviour towards evil.

The final way in which good versus evil is explored is Jekyll’s suicide at the end which kills both himself and Hyde showing the triumph of good. We are told in Jekyll’s own words that ‘I bring the life of that unhappy Henry Jekyll to an end’ and we know that Utterson and Poole discover the body of Hyde from whom ‘life was quite gone’. Both characters are dead and at Jekyll’s decision, he concedes that his life has not been fun because of Hyde. We can see then that Jekyll in killing himself also kills Hyde, the symbols of good and evil are both dead for the greater good of ridding the world of Hyde.

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde quotes

Here are some quotes to help you:

Chapter 1. Mr E tells Mr U about Mr H trampling the little girl

Cain’s heresy
[Utterson is] somehow loveable
the chief jewel of each week
Chanced on one of their rambles
turns sick and white with the desire to kill him

Chapter 2. Mr U looks at the will and meets Mr H

Murderous mixture of timidity and boldness
the ghost of some old sin
He was wild when he was young
black secrets

Chapter 3. Dr J seems to return to his old self

Man’s rich silence
large, well made, handsome, smooth, kindly face
[Jekyll calls Lanyon] An ignorant, blatant, hidebound pedant

Chapter 4. Mr H kills Sir C

Great flame of anger, ape-like fury, like a madman
[Hyde’s landlady is] ivory-faced and silvery haired
Blackguardly surroundings
unexpressed deformity

Chapter 5. Mr G reveals that Dr J and Mr H have similar handwriting

Deadly sick/feverish manner
changed voice

Chapter 6. Dr L says he knows a secret about Dr J before dying

Chief of sinners
chief of sufferers

Chapter 7. Mr U and Mr E see Dr J begin to transform

An answering horror in their eyes
red baize door

Chapter 8. Mr U and Mr P discover Mr H dead in the lab

Crushing anticipation of calamity
the two narratives in which this mystery be explained

Chapter 9. Dr L’s letter revealing that Dr J and Mr H are the same person

a new province of knowledge and avenues to fame and power
Stagger the unbelief of Satan
tears of penitence¬¬
transcendental medicine

Chapter 10. Dr J’s letter revealing the truth of his experiments

Morbid sense of shame
Profound duplicity of life
Primitive duality of man
[experiment was] towards the worse
The hate which now divided them was equal on both sides
[Hyde can spring] headlong into the sea of liberty

National 5: OcToBeR hOlIdAyS homework!

MWAHAHAHA! You thought you were getting away with no English homework, but that’s not the case. You need to practice those essays and so I would like each of you to pick two of the questions below and write a full essay for each. That means an introduction and five, yes five, PEEL paragraphs.
The PEEL questions are:

1) What is the technique/idea/feature you are focusing on in this paragraph?
2) What evidence do you have from the text to support this?
3) Explain how this evidence works or demonstrates your point?
4) So how does this answer your main question?

Right, here are your practice essay questions:

Choose a novel which explores an important theme. Show how the author has explored this theme.

Choose a novel in which the author creates a fascinating character. Show how the author has created this character and why you found them so fascinating.

Choose a novel in which the author uses a memorable narrative style. Explain how the features of the narrative technique contribute to the effectiveness of the text.

Choose a novel in which you feel sympathy with one of the main characters because of the hardships they face. Describe the problem the character faces and show how you are made to feel sympathy for them.

Chose a novel with a satisfactory ending. Explain why you find the ending satisfactory in bringing to a conclusion the main concerns of the text.

Chose a novel with an important human issue (i.e. conflict between good and evil). Show how the author reveals the issue through the portrayal of people and events throughout the text, and show your understanding of the issue deepened.

Choose a novel with a key incident. Give a brief account of the incident and show how this incident is important to the text as a whole.

Choose a novel in which there is a character involved in some form of conflict.
Show how the character comes to be involved in this conflict and how the conflict develops through the text.