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    Firstly, sorry if this is in the wrong place! I'm new, please correct me/ move this/ shout at me as appropriate!

    Okay, so I'm retaking my AS English exam on Monday (18th) and panicking hugely. It's a two hour exam on The Great Gatsby, and the poetry of Wilfred Owen.

    I've been stupid and not nearly revised enough - I got a B last time, but I need an A to meet my uni offer, and given how unconfident I am with A2 English I'd really like a high A in this exam. Irealise I've effed up by not preparing for Monday, and I'm willing to retake the exam agin in June, should I have to... but I SO don't want to.

    Does anyone have any advice, other than spend every waking second until Monday afternoon revising?

    The thing I'm really nervous about is bringing in critical analysis, for the Gatsby part ... does anyone have any notes they made for the exam last summer, that they'd be willing to let me have look at?


    I know I'm being really cheeky in sking for notes but I'm SO panicking right now ... so if you're in a kind mood, thank you so much.
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    Just re-read the text as often as you can to make sure you know it inside out. Do some research on the context of the text and consider the key themes explored (these will become obvious to you as you read the text). Also, have a look through your notes from last year to refresh your memory.
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    (Original post by ohmygoshxo)
    Does anyone have any advice, other than spend every waking second until Monday afternoon revising?
    First of all, forgive my ignorance as to the structure of the exam. I didn't do the same exam board but I've read Gatsby and studied Fitzgerald a lot in my free time so I'll do my best... Sorry if any of the points sound mundane but I'm just trying to be thorough.

    Don't spend every waking second revising! You'll become mentally drained and it's really important to get a good night's sleep so you can think clearly tomorrow. If you can, reread the poems you're most likely to refer to of Owen's, and reread the most important scenes of Gatsby which are, to me anyway:
    - the description of Daisy's house and the presence of the illusory (something about the grass growing into the house) - this sets up Daisy as a character around whom there is a romantic haze, and sets up Nick as an unreliable narrator.
    - when Gatsby and Nick first meet
    - The first party
    - any scenes involving Jordan as she's often used by Fitzgerald as a device to catalyse movement/reveal elements of the past that Nick doesn't have access to
    - The argument in the hotel in New York
    - Gatsby sitting outside Daisy's house when she and Tom are inside eating... chicken, is it? (after the argument)
    - The end (*sobs*)

    (Original post by ohmygoshxo)
    The thing I'm really nervous about is bringing in critical analysis, for the Gatsby part ... does anyone have any notes they made for the exam last summer, that they'd be willing to let me have look at?

    I know I'm being really cheeky in sking for notes but I'm SO panicking right now ... so if you're in a kind mood, thank you so much.
    I'll have a go at some 'critical analysis' but, as there's so much to cover, I'll try to focus on a few key bits...

    Form
    --The plot itself is bracketed by Nick's comments at the beginning and end, with the story being told in retrospect - there is a strong element of unreliability due to the fragile nature of memory, as well as the fact that a lot of Nick's account is made up of his speculations, and of second/third hand information. Importantly, Fitzgerald always allows Nick's presence to be justified at the novel's pivotal points - eg. in the argument in the hotel, Nick and Jordan try to leave but Tom and Gatsby, "insisted with competitive firmness that they remain."
    --Time is linear within novel but accelarates/decelerates throughout - this creates a sense of disorientation at times, especially at the parties. This is something you could perhaps link to Gatsby's desire to exist in the past and to the ways in which him nearly knocking over a clock in Nick's house is symbolic. Time becomes an oppressive presence in Gatsby's life.
    --East Egg and West Egg - they are so similar in appearance but how do they differ? Do they represent two different ways of living (and not just in terms of money - consider morally/immorally - is the apparently stark diff. between them realistic - if not, why does Fitzgerald do it? What is the significance of Nick living in the same neighbourhood as Gatsby?)
    East Egg: Buchanans, hypocritical materialism, ruthless pursuit of wealth and success
    West Egg: Gatsby and Nick, nostalgic yearning for an ideal that transcends materialism and the everyday.
    There is a "bizarre and not a little sinister contrast".
    NB. Nick says at the end, "I see now that this has been a story of the West, after all - Tom and Gatsby, Daisy and Jordan and I, were all Westerners." - Tom and Daisy lose a little of their 'ruthlessness' and gain a certain level of humanity. Why? Is it partly because of the calm scene of them together in their house where there is "an unmistakable air of natural intimacy"? - the reader sees them as a loving couple (if only briefly).
    Consider "what mixture of distance and proximity affords the best, most appropriate perception?" (Penguin edition intro.) - What is and is not distorted vision?

    Themes
    --Loss of innocence: Nick has an inbuilt innocence from his midwestern background - something that is destroyed - he returns to the midwest as a kind of catharsis.
    --Driving as a metaphor for life
    --The importance of "the green light that burns all night at the end of Daisy's dock" as a symbol of hope that is deceptively out of reach - importantly, look at the point when "the colossal significance of that light had now vanished forever" (when Gatsby and Daisy are together)
    --The American Dream - does Gatsby only love Daisy because of what she represents? She is "safe and proud above the hot struggles of the poor."

    Aaaand, I'm tired now :/
    Hope this is of some use... I haven't studied the book at school so my ideas are probably a little jumbled as they were produced, just now, in a stream of consciousness kinda fashion.

    PM/quote me if you want me to clear anything up, or if you have any questions. If you want to discuss some of your own ideas that you're not sure about I'd be happy to help.
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    (Original post by Aaymee)
    First of all, forgive my ignorance as to the structure of the exam. I didn't do the same exam board but I've read Gatsby and studied Fitzgerald a lot in my free time so I'll do my best... Sorry if any of the points sound mundane but I'm just trying to be thorough.

    Don't spend every waking second revising! You'll become mentally drained and it's really important to get a good night's sleep so you can think clearly tomorrow. If you can, reread the poems you're most likely to refer to of Owen's, and reread the most important scenes of Gatsby which are, to me anyway:
    - the description of Daisy's house and the presence of the illusory (something about the grass growing into the house) - this sets up Daisy as a character around whom there is a romantic haze, and sets up Nick as an unreliable narrator.
    - when Gatsby and Nick first meet
    - The first party
    - any scenes involving Jordan as she's often used by Fitzgerald as a device to catalyse movement/reveal elements of the past that Nick doesn't have access to
    - The argument in the hotel in New York
    - Gatsby sitting outside Daisy's house when she and Tom are inside eating... chicken, is it? (after the argument)
    - The end (*sobs*)



    I'll have a go at some 'critical analysis' but, as there's so much to cover, I'll try to focus on a few key bits...

    Form
    --The plot itself is bracketed by Nick's comments at the beginning and end, with the story being told in retrospect - there is a strong element of unreliability due to the fragile nature of memory, as well as the fact that a lot of Nick's account is made up of his speculations, and of second/third hand information. Importantly, Fitzgerald always allows Nick's presence to be justified at the novel's pivotal points - eg. in the argument in the hotel, Nick and Jordan try to leave but Tom and Gatsby, "insisted with competitive firmness that they remain."
    --Time is linear within novel but accelarates/decelerates throughout - this creates a sense of disorientation at times, especially at the parties. This is something you could perhaps link to Gatsby's desire to exist in the past and to the ways in which him nearly knocking over a clock in Nick's house is symbolic. Time becomes an oppressive presence in Gatsby's life.
    --East Egg and West Egg - they are so similar in appearance but how do they differ? Do they represent two different ways of living (and not just in terms of money - consider morally/immorally - is the apparently stark diff. between them realistic - if not, why does Fitzgerald do it? What is the significance of Nick living in the same neighbourhood as Gatsby?)
    East Egg: Buchanans, hypocritical materialism, ruthless pursuit of wealth and success
    West Egg: Gatsby and Nick, nostalgic yearning for an ideal that transcends materialism and the everyday.
    There is a "bizarre and not a little sinister contrast".
    NB. Nick says at the end, "I see now that this has been a story of the West, after all - Tom and Gatsby, Daisy and Jordan and I, were all Westerners." - Tom and Daisy lose a little of their 'ruthlessness' and gain a certain level of humanity. Why? Is it partly because of the calm scene of them together in their house where there is "an unmistakable air of natural intimacy"? - the reader sees them as a loving couple (if only briefly).
    Consider "what mixture of distance and proximity affords the best, most appropriate perception?" (Penguin edition intro.) - What is and is not distorted vision?

    Themes
    --Loss of innocence: Nick has an inbuilt innocence from his midwestern background - something that is destroyed - he returns to the midwest as a kind of catharsis.
    --Driving as a metaphor for life
    --The importance of "the green light that burns all night at the end of Daisy's dock" as a symbol of hope that is deceptively out of reach - importantly, look at the point when "the colossal significance of that light had now vanished forever" (when Gatsby and Daisy are together)
    --The American Dream - does Gatsby only love Daisy because of what she represents? She is "safe and proud above the hot struggles of the poor."

    Aaaand, I'm tired now :/
    Hope this is of some use... I haven't studied the book at school so my ideas are probably a little jumbled as they were produced, just now, in a stream of consciousness kinda fashion.

    PM/quote me if you want me to clear anything up, or if you have any questions. If you want to discuss some of your own ideas that you're not sure about I'd be happy to help.

    Thank you so much - this really jogged my memory of what I'd learnt and gave me somewhere to start revising, I'm feeling much less panicked now <3
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    hey
    what were the wilfred owen and gatsby questions in the Jan exam?
 
 
 
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