A-Level English lit comparison coursework; A Doll's House & Wide Sargasso Sea title?

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lowza
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#1
Report Thread starter 4 years ago
#1
Sorry for the long title!

For my A-Level lit coursework (which I'm trying to get written before I get back to school) I'm comparing A Doll's House and Wide Sargasso Sea.

Two themes that they share are a struggle for identity (A Doll's House being Nora's choice between wife, mother and person and in Wide Sargasso Sea its a lot to do with her racial identity and how its affected by her British husband) and also the constraints of a patriarchal (not the word, can't think of a better one) marriage. I know I really want to discuss both identity and marriage because there's too much contrast and not enough similarity to focus just on identity.

I'm struggling to come up with a question and was wondering if anyone had any pointers?

Maybe something like:
  • Compare and contrast the struggle for identity both Nora in A Doll's House and Antoinette in Wide Sargasso Sea face. Discuss how this is affected by their individual contexts, with a focus on marriage.

That's basically what I want to discuss but it sounds really unintelligent. Has anyone else got a better way of structuring this question somehow?

Thanks.
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Summertime123
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#2
Report 3 months ago
#2
what did u end up doing? I’ve literally chosen these exact two books but I can’t think of a title either
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tinygirl96
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#3
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#3
Focus on how identity is presented in both of the novels and make some notes. Do a comparison chart of novel themes etc. Prepare a typed up list of themes of the novels. Provide a explanation. This is a essay question to use- explain in detail how identity is portrayed in both of the novels and also mention how the characters feel about their identity. Another question relates to culture.
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Summertime123
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#4
Report 3 months ago
#4
thank you so much for the question ideas! I’ve left things to the last minute and I need to come up w a plan in the next 3 days. ://
I am struggling with the wording of the question itself and this is making my final steps in planning difficult.


I want to look at how the isolation of the protagonists is presented in both texts, and how each couples’ misunderstanding of each other (their identities) causes the decline of their marriages. I know both texts describe the women using the metaphor of dolls and wonder if this could be incorporated into my question. The use of setting is also interesting in each text. For example, Nora is predominantly seen in her domestic setting, designed by Torvald, which isolates her from a sense of her own identity. Rochester feels obviously out of place in Antoinette’s home, and Antoinette burns Rochester’s house in England. Torvald is unable understand what he has done wrong, and Nora is unable to reconcile her idealised version of Torvald to the selfish nature he presents at the end. Rochester misunderstands Antoinette as a person who is rejected by society and begins to believe what others have told him about her insanity, just as Torvald takes Krogstad’s opinion over Nora’s, and cares only about social status. In the end, both women resort to drastic measures out of desperation, and are more apart from their partners than before.

Sorry for writing so much, but I’m just struggling with coming up with a question that addresses all the A0s. I really appreciate your help.
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