Can I compare The Picture of Dorian Gray with Peter Pan for A-Level course work?

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Katie-G9
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Can I compare The Picture of Dorian Gray with Peter Pan for A-Level course work?

So I'm studying English Literature for A-Level and although it's bizarre, I wondered whether Peter Pan by J.M Barrie could be compared with The Picture of Dorian Gray. Both central characters have a desire to remain youthfully and beautiful and both are selfish.

I do worry that ideas for comparing the texts are limited and i wouldn't be able to analyse sufficiently therefore if anyone has any advice and ideas or any alternative texts that they have either used themselves or recommend could compare to Dorian Gray, that would be great.

The exam board is AQA and they do have a list of prohibited texts. In addition, I cannot use any other texts that I have studied for A-Level, for me being A Streetcar Named Desire, The Great Gatsby, Othello and The Handsmaid Tale.

Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated, thank you.
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SpleenieBeanie
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(Original post by Katie-G9)
Can I compare The Picture of Dorian Gray with Peter Pan for A-Level course work?

So I'm studying English Literature for A-Level and although it's bizarre, I wondered whether Peter Pan by J.M Barrie could be compared with The Picture of Dorian Gray. Both central characters have a desire to remain youthfully and beautiful and both are selfish.

I do worry that ideas for comparing the texts are limited and i wouldn't be able to analyse sufficiently therefore if anyone has any advice and ideas or any alternative texts that they have either used themselves or recommend could compare to Dorian Gray, that would be great.

The exam board is AQA and they do have a list of prohibited texts. In addition, I cannot use any other texts that I have studied for A-Level, for me being A Streetcar Named Desire, The Great Gatsby, Othello and The Handsmaid Tale.

Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated, thank you.
That sounds like it could be fascinating ! However my advice is to only focus on one in detail, probably Dorian, and make reference to Peter Pan in the essay for AO4 marks. It would be a viable comparison. But you also need to consider which part of the critical anthology you will refer to : this is central, as you need to talk about critical theory in detail and make your on critical interpretation based on your research.
I haven't read Dorian in a long time, but from my own coursework I would recommend rereading it deliberately trying to find links to one of the theories. If you can't, I'm afraid my only advice is to find something else with a better link, as this the whole point of the AQA coursework. But I did Literature B, I don't know if it's different for A?
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tinygirl96
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This is my first piece of advice.
Focus only on Dorian and refer back constantly to Peter Pan as you write for more marks. Re read it carefully and then see if you can find any hidden links to un mentioned theories. Make up a short list for future reference. Form your own personal interpretation that is entirely based on only your true feelings as well.
Choose which part of the entire anthology that you wish to refer to firstly. In terms of finding overall themes I know that you also need to talk about the background critical theory in extensive detail too. Expand more on your arguments as needed. I recommend writing at least three separate fairly detailed paragraphs.
Use textual quotes as solid examples to defend your points of view. Back up any unique perspectives with supporting evidence that is taken from the original text. Also highlight any interesting words which you may like to use as fodder in your essay.
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sweet lemon
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The advice here so far is very poor if you’re doing spec A, which it sounds like you might be, as it doesn’t require the critical anthology.

So if it’s spec A, this actually sounds like a really compelling pairing. You’re right to wonder if you’ll have enough material - you won’t know until you get into it, unfortunately. You might think about whether there something fundamentally similar or different about what the writers do with this theme, as conveyed through the central characters.

Classic pairings such as Frankenstein, Jekyll and Hyde and Dr Faustus spring to mind but something like Fight Club might also work?
Last edited by sweet lemon; 6 months ago
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Laurahurn123
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(Original post by Katie-G9)
Can I compare The Picture of Dorian Gray with Peter Pan for A-Level course work?

So I'm studying English Literature for A-Level and although it's bizarre, I wondered whether Peter Pan by J.M Barrie could be compared with The Picture of Dorian Gray. Both central characters have a desire to remain youthfully and beautiful and both are selfish.

I do worry that ideas for comparing the texts are limited and i wouldn't be able to analyse sufficiently therefore if anyone has any advice and ideas or any alternative texts that they have either used themselves or recommend could compare to Dorian Gray, that would be great.

The exam board is AQA and they do have a list of prohibited texts. In addition, I cannot use any other texts that I have studied for A-Level, for me being A Streetcar Named Desire, The Great Gatsby, Othello and The Handsmaid Tale.

Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated, thank you.
Hi there, i am taking the same texts in my a level, do you have any good essay plans or notes you’d want to sell/share ?
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Katie-G9
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(Original post by SpleenieBeanie)
That sounds like it could be fascinating ! However my advice is to only focus on one in detail, probably Dorian, and make reference to Peter Pan in the essay for AO4 marks. It would be a viable comparison. But you also need to consider which part of the critical anthology you will refer to : this is central, as you need to talk about critical theory in detail and make your on critical interpretation based on your research.
I haven't read Dorian in a long time, but from my own coursework I would recommend rereading it deliberately trying to find links to one of the theories. If you can't, I'm afraid my only advice is to find something else with a better link, as this the whole point of the AQA coursework. But I did Literature B, I don't know if it's different for A?
Thank you so much for the advice. I'm thinking now I may have to rethink. Not the end of the world as I'm only in my first year and have time. Rereading with the intention of finding links is a good suggestion. I'll make sure to do that with whatever i compare it with. I'm not sure the difference between Literature A or B though. Maybe a different teaching method?
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Katie-G9
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(Original post by Laurahurn123)
Hi there, i am taking the same texts in my a level, do you have any good essay plans or notes you’d want to sell/share ?
So far I've not written any essays, however I do recommend when doing your coursework, look at plot overviews online - I use Sparknotes.com - to get an idea of what the text is about and to compare themes. It gives you a good indication on whether the text you're planning on using in your course work correlates with the text you've studied. At this point, I have completed A Streetcar Named Desire and have basically a full set of notes so if you need any questions answering to do with the play I'll be happy to help. And if there's anything specific you'd like some advice on don't hesitate to ask
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Katie-G9
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(Original post by sweet lemon)
The advice here so far is very poor if you’re doing spec A, which it sounds like you might be, as it doesn’t require the critical anthology.

So if it’s spec A, this actually sounds like a really compelling pairing. You’re right to wonder if you’ll have enough material - you won’t know until you get into it, unfortunately. You might think about whether there something fundamentally similar or different about what the writers do with this theme, as conveyed through the central characters.

Classic pairings such as Frankenstein, Jekyll and Hyde and Dr Faustus spring to mind but something like Fight Club might also work?
Yes I'm doing specification A. I have time to look into this pairing but I may reevaluate, looking at the texts you've recommended. Thank you
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Katie-G9
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(Original post by Katie-G9)
Thank you so much for the advice. I'm thinking now I may have to rethink. Not the end of the world as I'm only in my first year and have time. Rereading with the intention of finding links is a good suggestion. I'll make sure to do that with whatever i compare it with. I'm not sure the difference between Literature A or B though. Maybe a different teaching method?
Sorry, I know understand what you mean by A and B! I'm doing A.
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Katie-G9
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(Original post by tinygirl96)
This is my first piece of advice.
Focus only on Dorian and refer back constantly to Peter Pan as you write for more marks. Re read it carefully and then see if you can find any hidden links to un mentioned theories. Make up a short list for future reference. Form your own personal interpretation that is entirely based on only your true feelings as well.
Choose which part of the entire anthology that you wish to refer to firstly. In terms of finding overall themes I know that you also need to talk about the background critical theory in extensive detail too. Expand more on your arguments as needed. I recommend writing at least three separate fairly detailed paragraphs.
Use textual quotes as solid examples to defend your points of view. Back up any unique perspectives with supporting evidence that is taken from the original text. Also highlight any interesting words which you may like to use as fodder in your essay.
This is amazing advice! Thank you so much. I will be referring back to this when I start drafting my essay
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Anonymous1502
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I did AQA A last year I compared the picture of Dorian Grey with the bell jar. First look for critics views on jstor to determine whether there is substantial critics views out there for your texts and whether any of them look at your theme.
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Katie-G9
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(Original post by Anonymous1502)
I did AQA A last year I compared the picture of Dorian Grey with the bell jar. First look for critics views on jstor to determine whether there is substantial critics views out there for your texts and whether any of them look at your theme.
I didn't think to do this, thank you. And was the bell jar good? I may look into it.
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Anonymous1502
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(Original post by Katie-G9)
I didn't think to do this, thank you. And was the bell jar good? I may look into it.
I really liked the bell jar, I compared how both texts present mental illness. My teacher told me to pick texts which aren't too similar so there are actually things that are different for example the bell jar is a typical text on mental illness while dorian grey isn't but it can be implied that it is about that also.
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Laurahurn123
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(Original post by Katie-G9)
So far I've not written any essays, however I do recommend when doing your coursework, look at plot overviews online - I use Sparknotes.com - to get an idea of what the text is about and to compare themes. It gives you a good indication on whether the text you're planning on using in your course work correlates with the text you've studied. At this point, I have completed A Streetcar Named Desire and have basically a full set of notes so if you need any questions answering to do with the play I'll be happy to help. And if there's anything specific you'd like some advice on don't hesitate to ask
How did you organise essay plans ?
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SpleenieBeanie
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(Original post by Katie-G9)
Thank you so much for the advice. I'm thinking now I may have to rethink. Not the end of the world as I'm only in my first year and have time. Rereading with the intention of finding links is a good suggestion. I'll make sure to do that with whatever i compare it with. I'm not sure the difference between Literature A or B though. Maybe a different teaching method?
Ah no, the spec is very different I think, I just didn't consider that the coursework would be different too. Also I'm surprised they're having you do your coursework in your first year? I'm still finishing off my second essay, and I'm in the second year. I guess that's all on individual schools/colleges and departments. Keep me posted
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