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An explanation of Text 1 The Butcher's Shop
Topping connotes the Butcher as being gruesome and hypocritical, evoking
a negative attitude towards the Butcher for killing animals. Topping
achieves this though the semantic field of meat as a metaphoric signifier of
her distaste and hypocrisy of the Butcher: `fingers fat as sausages.' `meaty
smile.' These polysemic metaphors act to dehumanize the Butcher to brand
him as a murderer in Toppings eyes, or alternatively highlight hypocrisy-
that he is an animal yet as the right to kill animals.
In juxtaposition to this, Topping portrays the pigs as `dignified martyrs':
personifying the pigs to denote them as being heroes- they have had to
sacrifice their life for human consumption.
The author also plays on the idyllic depictions of a farm in children's
books, highlighting the satirical nature of them juxtaposed with the
gruesome depiction of real life. The author highlights how children are
often given a false representation of real life, highlighting the irony of
human nature, and how humans can be as cold-blooded as other animals.
Topping achieves this through the lexis `smug' `woolly' `snowy' juxtaposed
with the lexical devices previously discussed in this overview. Phonological
aspects are also important to note: the use of sibilance in `snowy sheep.'
In addition, the author implements political satire through the use of `their
porky heads voting Tory all their life's'. The author may thus use the pigs
as a semantic representation of Tory voters being oblivious, and the
Butcher being to controlling politician. This links in with the context of
production: the author is a dedicated to the labour party and may
therefore convey her attitudes through the use of this reference.