All questions on English literature

Imagery in Education For Leisure by Carol Ann Duffy?

I need to write a few paragraphs on the imagery in Education For Leisure and am finding it really difficult! Please help!!!!

Education for Leisure - Carol Ann Duffy Today I am going to kill something. Anything. I have had enough of being ignored and today I am going to play God. It is an ordinary day, a sort of grey with boredom stirring in the streets. I squash a fly against the window with my thumb. We did that at school. Shakespeare. It was in another language and now the fly is in another language. I breathe out talent on the glass to write my name. I am a genius. I could be anything at all, with half the chance. But today I am going to change the world. Something’s world. The cat avoids me. The cat knows I am a genius, and has hidden itself. I pour the goldfish down the bog. I pull the chain. I see that it is good. The budgie is panicking. Once a fortnight, I walk the two miles into town for signing on. They don’t appreciate my autograph. There is nothing left to kill. I dial the radio and tell the man he’s talking to a superstar. He cuts me off. I get our bread-knife and go out. The pavements glitter suddenly. I touch your arm
04 December 2011
Hi there! If you can tell me what you've got so far, I may be able to help you!
04 December 2011
That would be great, thank you... "Today I am going to kill something. Anything." the word "anything" is added to show it is not a personal thing and it re-inforces that she wants to destroy things, regardless what it is, and feels the need to make reckless decisions.... what could i add?! thank you!
04 December 2011
Quite a lot actually! Would you like to do a private session at this point? If not, I will simply give you some pointers.
04 December 2011
A few pointers would be brilliant :)
04 December 2011
Okay! Look first at the fly squashed on the window - this is a reference to King Lear, where Gloucester squashes a fly as a metaphor for the suffering inflicted on man. The speaker in Education for Leisure is misunderstanding this as a licence to treat life casually, and to kill.
04 December 2011
Also, look at the phrase 'boredom stirring in the streets' and think what this is a metaphor for. How does it relate to the speaker's life.
04 December 2011
Look at 'I breathe out talent'. Do we really breathe out talent? What does this tell us about the speaker's view of himself. Relate this to his intention to play God.
04 December 2011
Back to the fly. Look at the comment that the dead fly is now 'in another language'. The speaker has already related this to studying Shakespeare. What does 'another language' represent in the context of the fly now being dead?
04 December 2011
that's great, thank you very much. I am also going to talk about "The budgie is panicking." Would i be correct in saying that this is a sign of arrogance and pride that the has the power and authority to scare something by their actions? Is this a good example of imagery? All these points are great, you have helped me a lot. thank you.
04 December 2011
Think of it this way - imagery is that which creates pictures, sounds, smells and/or taste in the mind of the reader, and causes us to respond emotionally.
04 December 2011
04 December 2011
thank you very much!
04 December 2011
You are welcome. All the best with your analysis!
04 December 2011
24 April 2017
Add an answer

Similar questions

What is the purpose of literature in our society?

Why is the purpose of literature?

In order to answer this question, let’s define our terms. What is literature and, specifically, what is English literature? Literature as defined by the Encyclopaedia Britannica is quite simply a ‘body of written works.’ This includes works defined in the table below.  

Novel A narrative in prose
Novella A narrative in prose that is shorter than a novel
Play A piece of dramatic literature, which is performed
Short Story A narrative in prose that is shorter than a novella
Poem Uses figurative language and sometimes has a rhyme

  English literature is still literature - however, it is any work specific to the British Isles that was written anywhere between the 7th century and the present day. So, when you take any English literature courses, keep in mind that you will be narrowing your study to English literature books. Take a look at the timeline below to see some notable works!   literature_timeline As you might have guessed, English literature is considered as different from literature in the English language. The table below holds some other types of literature in the English language.  

American literature Literature from the US
Canadian literature Literature from Canada (non-French)
Australian literature Literature from Australia, including Aboriginal English
New Zealand literature Literature form New Zealand

  So now, what is the purpose of literature? Specifically, English literature? Without literature, there is no history. Not only did early works of literature provide first-hand accounts of historical events, but they also capture entire eras: popular culture, societal norms, and more. literature_importance  

How does literature affect our life?

If you’ve ever been interested in pursuing an English literature degree or want to find an English literature university specialization - you might be asking yourself this question. Let’s start by looking at the different categories of literature: categories_literature Within these categories, you can find the following genres:  

Fiction Short stories, myths, novels, novellas
Non-Fiction Autobiographies, speeches, essays, diaries
Drama Comedies, tragedies, pantomimes, melodramas
Poetry Poems, pastorals, lyrics

  So, let’s start with something the majority of people can relate to: lyrics. There is a reason why heart-wrenching ballads are so great to listen to during a bad breakup, or why certain songs can take you back to a moment in your life. Songs are the soundtrack to our lived experiences, and the techniques employed by lyricists can be considered literary techniques.   genres_literature You’ll find literature in the present day affects our lives mainly as a means of entertainment: from classic plays to binge-worthy series to stories shared at the dinner table. While this may seem like a modern-day tendency, the truth is literature has always been a means of entertainment.    

Greek Tragedies 5th century Euripides, Sophocles, Aeschylus
Shakespeare Plays 17th century Tragedy, tragicomedy comedy
Netflix Series 20th, 21st century Films, series, etc.

  Literature also affects language. When it comes to English literature especially, Shakespeare is said to have contributed about 1,700 words and about 40 different phrases to the English language. Take a look at some below!  

Words Invented Phrases
Laughing stock Eyeball
Dead as a doornail Puking
Fair play Obscene
In a pickle Marketable


What can literature teach us?

Keeping in mind that all of these questions could be answered differently depending on who you ask, we can generally split the teachings of literature into three main categories.   skills_gained_literature Let’s explore each of these categories in-depth.  

Personal In the form of catharsis, as a kind of therapy, gives you insight into personal events in your own life, etc.
World events Historical accounts of socio-cultural and economic events throughout history (i.e., 2008’s Great Recession, the Zoot Suit riots, etc.)
Hard and soft skills Can give you detailed instruction on a variety of topics: programming, directing, communication, etc.

  In other words, literature can teach us about ourselves, about the world and about a wide variety of skills.  

What are the benefits of studying English literature?

The benefits of studying English literature can be divided depending on the type of person who is studying. If you’re a student who isn’t interested in specializing in, for example, an English literature Cambridge program - you might be more interested in knowing how to revise for English literature.   If you’re interested in studying English at uni, you might be more interested in English literature graduate jobs. Let’s start with the first case   The benefits of studying and reviewing English literature for your class, even if you’re not particularly passionate about literature itself, are many.  

Benefit 1 Develop critical thinking skills
Benefit 2 Improve writing skills
Benefit 3 Keeps the brain stimulated

  While the above are benefits everyone can take advantage of, let’s take a look at the benefits of being an English literature major.  

Benefit 1 Can help you stand out in any industry
Benefit 2 Can be used as a creative outlet
Benefit 3 Opens up a wide variety of careers (translator, writer, editor, etc.)


What skills do you gain from studying English literature?

Now that we’ve talked about the influence that literature can have on personal and professional life, let’s discuss the benefits of studying literature. In other words, the importance of literature review with regards to building skills.   When you talk about the skills gained from studying English literature, it is necessary to look at the common assignments you’ll have to complete that will help you perfect these skills.  

Assignment Description
Research Paper English literature courses will require you to complete some sort of research paper. This includes: argumentative, critical, persuasive, etc.
Terms You will need to study and understand the literary terms used the most: metaphor, hyperbole, ekphrasis, climax, alliteration.
Tools You will need to study and understand the literary devices used in literature: allegory, epigraph, foreshadowing, juxtaposition, etc.
Reading In any English literature class you will have to complete reading assignments.

  When you’re studying literary terms and devices, reading books and completing research papers - you are actually polishing skills that will become very useful in the future. Take a look at just some of the skills you will develop while completing any of these four elements. literature_work