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Andrea Gulli

English IOC Notes

Background Information
John Donne(The Flea, A Valediction Forbidding Mourning):

Lived between the 16th and 17th century.


His early poems were love focused and based on the relationship with his lover like The Flea and A
Valediction forbidding mourning.
After the death of his wife, Donne turns to his faith and starts writing religious and spiritual poems like the
Holy Sonnets.
A metaphysical poet that used conceits and extensive imagery/metaphors in his poems.

Gerard Hopkins(The Windhover, Gods Grandeur):


Lived in the 19th century.
Converted into a Roman Catholic and became a Jesuit priest highly committed to religion.
Fell into depression since his creative poetry skills were restricted by hi spiritual beliefs.
Shakespeare(Julius Caesar):

Background on the story depending on the extract.


Julius Caesar is a tragedy play written to portray the assassination of Caesar the dictator.
Its often said to reflect the English monarchy and the succession of its leader.
George Orwell(Down and Out in Paris and London):

First work written by Orwell and its a memoir of him living in poverty in Paris and London. He purposely
induces himself in the world of poverty to have a first-hand experience.
While in Paris, he fights with starvation trying to find a job. After a few unsuccessful tries he obtains a role as
a plongeur(dishwasher) at Hotel X.

Poetry Notes
A Valediction Forbidding Mourning:

One of John Donnes early poems (before death of his wife) and is focused on love and relationship.
Ideas and characteristics of the Renaissance period are present in the poem(Use of mathematical ideas)
The poem is about a separation in a relationship and the writer explains how this will not be the end nor
occasion for sorrow since they will be spiritually connected.
Various metaphors and comparisons are used to show and reason why the mourning will be forbidden
FIRST STANZA:
The title of the poem introduces the idea of the farewell that is about to happen and Forbidding Mourning
means it shouldnt cause feelings of sorrow or sadness.
The poem starts off with Donne conveying how death doesnt scare him by creating a euphemism
(expression) for death with the use of diction mildy away
These men whisper to their souls so their emotions are stopped
They will have to leave their souls when they die, and this is very similar to what his situation is.
In this first stanza, he clearly establishes two groups which he will develop and contradict later feeling in one
body with his lover.
SECOND STANZA:
Already referring to him and his lover as one body using us. let us melt
Alliteration of Melt and Make unifies their actions.
After saying what they will do, negative words say what they will not do(referring to forbidding mourning)
Profanation- the use of this word makes their love seem holy and higher than nature.

Andrea Gulli

This is contrasted in the laity our love. When compared to profanation.


THIRD STANZA:
Uses the portraying of planets as evil to blame the valediction on superstition.
The planets are then described with trepidation that resembles a trembling motion symbolizing the
insecurity of other weaker relationships.
FOURTH STANZA:
The previous message is continued in this stanza saying using insulting adjectives like dull and
sublunary(emphasizing again their relationship is unique and special)
Alliteration in soul is sense adds to the linking of physical and spiritual together.
The stanza ends with the mentioning of the ancient belief of the body being formed of elements (the thing
which elemented it) emphasizing the physical side.
FIFTH STANZA:
But sets them apart from other lovers. Refined describes it as more complex.
They themselves dont know how to describe their love and why it is so special.(Dont know how it will end)
Inter-assured of the mind displays they are one mind/body (unity). Their love is greater a spiritual/soul one
than a physical one.
The technique of an internal rhyme in the last sentence links physical and spiritual but shows their difference
SIXTH STANZA:
Same idea portrayed-Our two souls therefore, which are one
Point of separation: described as an expansion, the opposite as it extends.
Image of gold being crushed and stretched + the value of their love.
SEVENTH STANZA:
Conceit of a compass portraying their relationship begins. They represent the legs of a compass that stretch
but as still connected. Metaphor used to develop the imagery. One stays still as the other moves.
EIGHT STANZA:

Leans and Hearkens describe on a compass how he is stretching to touch her again.
Erects-Followed by first physical and sexual imagery showing they also have a physical relationship
parallel to the spiritual one.
NINTH STANZA:
Conclusion with the image of a circle that has been drawn with the use of the compass. fMeans that their
relationship will continue forever and it symbolizes perfection just like a circle.(And makes me end where I
begun)
The Flea
Early poem by John Donne that uses a metaphysical conceit of a flea to express symbols of love and persuade
his lover to engage in a physical relationship
Very physical compared to his later poetry

Julius Caesar Notes


Act I, Scene II, lines 1-47

Takes place on crowning day and there is celebration in the streets of Caesars rule.(MOOD)
Important in the book when Soothsayer approaches Caesar with the vision of his death. He is ignored.
Caesar enters the parliament and leaves Brutus and Cassius to discourse.
Cassius tries to persuade Brutus to acknowledge hes as good as Caesar.(Cassius manipulative nature and his
only chance to influence him).
Caesar gives orders straight away after entering to his wife and Anthony.(Shows the power and his
dictatorship)
Calphurnia being importance shows Caesar wanting to establish a monarchy.
Anthony says [line 10] about Caesar-throughout the book characters talk more about Caesar than
themselves(Showing he is superior.)
Soothsayer shouts out to Caesar. Caesar first gives him his full attention not knowing who he is and hearing
that the tone of his voice is threatening.-I hear a tongue thrilled

Andrea Gulli

The soothsayer uses the Ides of March(Roman reference) to aware him of the future.
Line 24-The readers know that this will be the fatal error Caesar makes, however his response is short and
effective. (His attention shortly fades after seeing the status of who is talking to him)
Him being referred to as dreamer is foreshadowing the dream his wife will have later.
Cassius+Brutus are left.
Cassius goes on showing the qualities of Brutus
Brutus is neglecting them and finds himself detached from.
Describes Anthony as positive with quick spirit
Describes himself as negative with not gamesome
Cassius persuades Brutus saying he should try imagining himself as leader
Over your friend, that loves you-Caesar prefers Brutus (Cassiuss manipulative by lying about Caesars
opinions.)
Brutus replies he wants to isolate(not letting it out)
Vexed I am-feels unready and far from a powerful role of a leader like Caesar.

Act I, Scene II, lines


Liam will do it
Act III, Scene II, lines 74-118
I wil do it
Act IV, Scene III, lines 6-49
I will do it

Down and Out in Paris and London


Chapter 10 p.56-57(The Hotel X, was aa queer sort of place)

After searching for jobs the narrator finally obtains one as plongeur. Hoping this will be successful unlike his
offer as a waiter by Boriss friend.
Starts Chapter 10
First impressions on his first working day.
Narrators first feelings and thoughts/emotion about Hotel X/New job
Important point in the book: start of new experience, first job as poor/in poverty.
Hotel X was a grandiose place v.s. little dark doorway-Narrators position in the Hotels hierarchy(Lowest)
Contrast between Classical facade and dark doorway-starts off difference between kitchen and costumers.
Greasy trousers foreshadows how physical & dirty his job will be
DICTION: haggardfrom overwork-(Haggard meaning exhausted from fatigue and suffering)
Narrator lies of being professional dishwasher-shows he has learnt how to live in poverty(Advice from Boris)
Chef de personal introduced and knows he is lying(experienced with poor)
Narrator accepted and portrayed useful due to being English(Importance of Nationality)
DESCRIPTION of Working Conditions:
Claustrophobic descriptive image(with words like)
Overwhelmed from environment-There seemed to beyards in all
Comparison/simile of the kitchen to a ships deck.(adds to the image of limited space)
Kitchen noise is the engines(effective imagery)

Andrea Gulli

Contrast of fire and ice descriptions in the kitchen(Chaotic, confusing)


Straight away the narrator learns his position by being unrespected by a higher ranked worker. Is pushed and
called Range-toi, idiot(signifies his lower position and its important with respect)
Effective quote: Sooner will you findhas her maidenhead means that there will always be something going
on at Hotel X. Uses an effective metaphor w/ humour links to queer at the end.
The ending revises the beginning of the Chapter The Hotel X was-he has changed his initial thoughts after
seeing the inside of the kitchen.(the importance of a first-hand experience to fully understand)

Chapter 12 p.68-69(It was amusingan aristocrat to serve him)

Narrator has been working as a plongeur for a while.


Descriptions/images of the filthy kitchen and its chaos.
Differences in atmosphere between the kitchen door.(ANECTODE of Italian waiter)
Show the 2 personalities of the Hotel X.
FIRST LINE: Introduction of idea explained later. Narrator finds it amusing showing its unusual and
entertaining.
Costumers described with positives like splendour and other
Just a few feet away conveys to the reader how small the distance between the two contrasts is.
Disgusting filth is the only term used to describe the kitchen.(Short and effective)
Repetition of it to emphasize the dirtiness.
There was no time to sweep the floor till eveningsoapy water-connection with previous comparison to
ship deck.
Food mixed with sweat-image of disgust
Stealing was popular-Everywhere
nothing unusual to wash his face-The dirtiness that might seem shocking to the reader was normal.
Sudden change of image-showing what the customers saw.(CONTRASTING)-But the customers saw nothing
of this.
ANECDOTE: uses words to describe the gracefulness of waiter.
Fiery italian-importance of position/job
Language he uses is very vulgar (adds to atmosphere (cultural) of restaurant). Contradicts his gracefulness.
Adds humor at the end to distress the story told.
Same waiter compared to a swan.(graceful, beautiful and gentle
DICTION:Benign smile-Waiters trained to convey fake emotions.
Aristrocrat-Putting the waiter higher than the customer (can control them)-importance of position.
Learn about the astute waiters and the controversial fact that customers are controlled by them.

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