Characterisation

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  • Characterisation
    • Tennyson
      • Ulysses
        • 'Match'd with an aged wife, I mete and dole/ Unequal laws unto a savage race'
          • Lack of contentment w/current situation, boredom
          • Not a likeable character, describes own people as 'savage' and wife as 'aged'
          • Doesn't appreciate Penelope's loyalty - egotistical - she waited for 20 years, all he wants to do is leave again
          • Disatisfied w/unfulfilling life, again not likeable to MODERN audience, abdication of responsibility
        • 'Drunk delight of battle' 'Heroic hearts / Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will'
          • Could be seen as heroic, esp. for Greek audience ( character from Greek legend - Homer)
            • Final words of poem seem uplifting, determined, figure for heroes
      • The Lady of Shalott
        • 'Tis the fairy' 'Weaves by night and day/A magic web' 'I am half-sick of shadows'
          • Creates and air of mystery/myth surrounding LoS
          • One of the few lines of dialogue characterises her as someone who is no longer content- cursed
          • But only 'half-sick', not completely desperate
        • 'dazzling' 'sparkled' 'burning flame' 'Tirra Lirra, by the river/ sang Sir Lancelot'
          • Associated w/images of light/sun/warmth etc, positive, vibrancy contrasts everything else in poem
          • However his song is a bawdy, crude Shakespearean tune, does not fit w/outward character
            • Suggests not all he appears to be, deceiving, trivial
      • Mariana
        • 'I am aweary, aweary, / I would that I were dead'
          • Begging fro death, seems hopeless
          • But doesn't actually do anything about it, doesn't even kill herself, remains miserable
          • Seems to be pathetic, no sympathy as she is passive
        • 'The shadow of the poplar fell/ Upon her bed, across her brow'
          • Frustrated, sexually + mentally
          • Turbulent intense pathetic fallacy in same stanza - strong emotions
          • Thoughts shrouded in darkness, angry
    • Frost
      • Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
        • Characterisation = difficult, extremely ambiguous lang. used
          • 'I have promises to keep, / And miles to go before I sleep / And miles to go before I sleep'
            • Is his journey not yet finished, euphemism for suicide?
            • Intriguing character
      • The Ax- Helve
        • Dramatic narrative, first person
          • Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
            • Characterisation = difficult, extremely ambiguous lang. used
              • 'I have promises to keep, / And miles to go before I sleep / And miles to go before I sleep'
                • Is his journey not yet finished, euphemism for suicide?
                • Intriguing character
        • Characterised as suspicious, doesn't trust his neighbour
          • Through main characters' skepticism, (wrongly so), Frost challenges the idea that isolation is better, breaks stereotypes
            • 'Do you know, what we talked about was knowledge?'
              • In disbelief, uses the characterisation of the narrator to dispel stereotypes
          • 'Something to sell? That wasn't how it sounded'
          • 'In time to keep me from suspecting him / Of really never having meant to keep it'
    • Enduring Love
      • Joe
        • Not too much regarding Joe's physicality as he is the narrator
        • Affects how we view every other character in the novel, his opinions and retrospect colour the characters personalities
      • Clarissa
        • We start to dislike he perhaps after finding out that Joe was right, her behaviour seems less supportive - more accusatory
          • 'You saved my life, but perhaps you put my life in jeopardy - by drawing Parry in, by overreacting all along the way' pg218
      • Jed
        • Antagonist but not a traditional one, his mental illness causes him to become blameless - the reader does not want him to die, or have a miserable ending
    • The Great Gatsby
      • Nick
        • Like Joe, can only be characterised by what he says about himself - many readers find his nature pompous, dislikeable
      • Gatsby
        • Unreliable portrayal, Gatsby himself is an illusionist, his name isn't even Gatsby, where does the lie end?
          • Also unreliable due to Nick's fascination and obsession with him - even the title depict him as 'Great'
        • Social climber, lavish lifestyle, but in the end, he doesn't fit with the upper class world
      • Daisy
        • Initially child-like, however as the tale progresses we have less and less sympathy for her
          • Obsessed with triviality - money and material things
            • Is she only loyal to Tom because he will give her security - old money?
      • Tom
        • Portrayed completely negatively by Nick, perhaps because Tom was the antagonist in Gatsby's eyes, and therefore Nick's?
          • Many of the his descriptions are not from what Tom directly says or does - they are implied
            • 'gave him the appearance of always leaning aggressively forward' 'seemed to fill those glistening boots until he strained' 'the impression of fractiousness he conveyed'
              • 'he seemed to say, 'just because I'm stronger and more of a man than you are.'

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