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English literature courswork

Hi, I'm currently taking an A-level in english literature and have no idea on what to do for courswork. My teacher has given me the task of picking out a novel, a poem and a play to work on with one having to be from the 21st century and others either 20th or 21st century.

I currently have one vague idea for what might work but am still pretty much in the dark for the task.
I am considering a theme of how women of colour are/were treated using The colour purple by Alice Walker (1982) for my novel and A raisin in the sun by Lorraine Hansberry (1959) for my play but was stumped on a poem from the 21st century. If anyone has a suggestion for poem or superior option for either novel or play please let me know, it would help a lot!

I also really wanted to do The goldfinch by Donna Tartt (2013) for a novel but have no idea what theme to go with or what to potentially pair it with. Again, any suggestions would be appreciated so much as I'm struggling greatly with making any sort of decision.
Hi! It might help to choose two texts from the same genre so that themes are easier to come by. For example, I did dystopian fiction and chose two books that were similar enough to find comparisons but different enough to make points about them individually. If you were to choose poetry for example, you could do Romantic poetry, or feminist poetry or something that has a particular genre.

Also to answer your poem question in the second paragraph, if you are allowed to, trying looking for modern poetry about women of colour so that you can compare it to the more older texts. It might allow you to comment on the shift in views about women of colour or about new perspectives.
Original post by sickofthis
Hi! It might help to choose two texts from the same genre so that themes are easier to come by. For example, I did dystopian fiction and chose two books that were similar enough to find comparisons but different enough to make points about them individually. If you were to choose poetry for example, you could do Romantic poetry, or feminist poetry or something that has a particular genre.

Also to answer your poem question in the second paragraph, if you are allowed to, trying looking for modern poetry about women of colour so that you can compare it to the more older texts. It might allow you to comment on the shift in views about women of colour or about new perspectives.

This has helped lots, thank you so much!
I also studied English Lit a few years ago and some good Poetry to compare with 'The Colour Purple' would be a poem from Carol Ann Duffy's Anthology; 'Feminine Gospels'. Duffy's anthology explores the different perspectives of women throughout history and would make an excellent pairing with the Colour Purple. I've studied The Colour Purple and I have also read Duffy's full anthology and there are a lot of similar themes you can explore in your coursework.

You can find the Feminine Gospels anthology on the website named 'Genius' all the poems are available and the website provides a really good analysis on each poem individually!
Original post by Bean_cat
I also studied English Lit a few years ago and some good Poetry to compare with 'The Colour Purple' would be a poem from Carol Ann Duffy's Anthology; 'Feminine Gospels'. Duffy's anthology explores the different perspectives of women throughout history and would make an excellent pairing with the Colour Purple. I've studied The Colour Purple and I have also read Duffy's full anthology and there are a lot of similar themes you can explore in your coursework.

You can find the Feminine Gospels anthology on the website named 'Genius' all the poems are available and the website provides a really good analysis on each poem individually!


hi i have also just started my english literature coursework and i was wondering if anyone has any recommendations of good texts to compare the the world's wife by carol ann duffy, but the text has to be pre-1900 because of AQA's rules
Original post by mks1234567
hi i have also just started my english literature coursework and i was wondering if anyone has any recommendations of good texts to compare the the world's wife by carol ann duffy, but the text has to be pre-1900 because of AQA's rules

What theme/ question are you going to be writing about in your cw?
Original post by Bean_cat
What theme/ question are you going to be writing about in your cw?


i wanted to make the main theme of the question the presentation/empowerment of women and incorporate the feminist theory into my coursework
Original post by mks1234567
i wanted to make the main theme of the question the presentation/empowerment of women and incorporate the feminist theory into my coursework

I think a good play would be 'The Doll's House' - Henrik Ibsen.

It's a good read and fits really well with what you're wanting to write about, it also has themes of the following which you can write about:

- The Power imbalance between Men and Women
- Strong Feminist themes
- Gender Roles
- Women's Roles in Society
- Women's Oppression & Freedom

I hope this helps! :smile:
Original post by KaitlynNellist
Hi, I'm currently taking an A-level in english literature and have no idea on what to do for courswork. My teacher has given me the task of picking out a novel, a poem and a play to work on with one having to be from the 21st century and others either 20th or 21st century.

I currently have one vague idea for what might work but am still pretty much in the dark for the task.
I am considering a theme of how women of colour are/were treated using The colour purple by Alice Walker (1982) for my novel and A raisin in the sun by Lorraine Hansberry (1959) for my play but was stumped on a poem from the 21st century. If anyone has a suggestion for poem or superior option for either novel or play please let me know, it would help a lot!

I also really wanted to do The goldfinch by Donna Tartt (2013) for a novel but have no idea what theme to go with or what to potentially pair it with. Again, any suggestions would be appreciated so much as I'm struggling greatly with making any sort of decision.


Although 20th century, Langston Hughes as a lot of good poems that would be fitting for your theme! Good luck

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