Rapunzstiltskin ppt

Rapunzstiltskin
Liz Lochhead
Liz Lochhead
• Liz Lochhead was born in Motherwell,
Scotland in 1947. She studied at the Glasgow
School of Art in the 1960s before working as
an art teacher. She has built a formidable
reputation as a dramatist and poet and is
currently one of Scotland's most successful
playwrights.
The poem
• The Poem
• In 'Rapunzstiltskin', Liz Lochhead plays with the Grimm
brothers' stories of Rapunzel and Rumpelstiltskin to
make a comic fable of sexual politics and power
relationships between men and women. Like other
women writers of her generation Lochhead found that
fairytales and legends are a source of deeply held
stereotypes (old hags, wise old men, damsels in
distress and knights in shining armour) and that they
were ripe for a modern re-telling. This poem is one that
needs to be heard by a collective audience, and it
achieves its effects from a shared understanding
between poet and audience.
What Liz Lochhead Said
• This isn't my own voice... it's a kind of tough girl
talk... which is an aspect of myself but not my
own voice... there's a kind of ventriloquism going
on.
• The man in the poem, if you look closely, is
always coming up with the right answers but it's
to the question before... he's always one
behind... when she takes off her glasses the real
answer would be, "Why you're beautiful!"... but
he says, "All the better to see you with my dear."
He's still stuck in the fairy stories!
‘Rapunzstiltskin’
• You have each been given a section of the poem.
• In pairs you must look closely at this section.
• You are looking for features of unusual language,
informal language and abbreviations.
• You should also look for similes, metaphors,
alliteration and onomatopoeia.
• Highlight the various fairy tales used in your
section and explain to the rest of the class what
you think it means.
You’ve just watched a clip of the poet, Liz Lochhead,
reading and speaking about the poem ‘Rapunzstiltskin’.
Think about
1. What do you think Liz Lochhead is saying about love and
relationships between men & women ?
2. What is Lochhead’s opinion of fairy tales?
lochhead - rapunzstiltskin.wmv
Watch the clip of ‘He’s Just not that in
to you’
• Think about how the two messages are similar
• What do fairy tales teach us about love?
• What issue does the clip highlight?
He's Just Not that in to You
Lines 1-5
& just when our maiden had got
good & used to her isolation,
stopped daily expecting to be rescued,
had come to almost love her tower,
along comes This Prince
Opening questions
1. a) Why do you think the poet starts off with ‘&’?
b) What does she expect us to know without reading the poem?
2. The word ‘maiden’ is not used as much these days.
a) What do you think it means?
b) Can you think any words that have a similar meaning?
c) What does it tell us about the ‘maiden’?
3. How do we expect the maiden to feel about her tower and how
does she actually feel? Use a reference from the text to support your
answer.
4. What do you notice about line 5? Why did the writer choose to do
this?
5. What message is the writer trying to send in the first five lines?
Lines 6 -10
with absolutely
all the wrong answers.
Of course she had not been brought up to look for
originality or gingerbread
so at first she was quite undaunted
• 1.
hag inside etc. & how trapped she was);
well, it was corny but
he did look sort of gorgeous
axe and all.
So there she was, humming & pulling
all the pins out of her chignon,
throwing him all the usual lifelines
till, soon, he was shimmying in & out
every other day as though
he owned the place, bringing her
the sex manuals & skeins of silk
from which she was meant, eventually,
to weave the means of her own escape.
‘All very well & good,’ she prompted,
‘but when exactly?’
She gave him till
well past the bell on the timeclock.
She mouthed at him, hinted,
she was keener than a T.V. quizmaster
that he should get it right.
‘I’ll do everything in my power’ he intoned, ‘but
the impossible (she groaned) might
take a little longer.’ He grinned.
She pulled her glasses off.
‘All the better
to see you with my dear?’ he hazarded.
She screamed, cut off her hair.
‘Why you’re beautiful?’ he guessed tentatively.
‘No, No, No!’ she
shrieked & stamped her foot so
hard it sank six cubits through the floorboards.
‘I love you?’ he came up with
as finally she tore herself in two.
Rapunzstiltskin
by Liz Lochhead
& just when our maiden had got
good & used to her isolation,
stopped daily expecting to be rescued,
had come to almost love her tower,
along comes This Prince
with absolutely
all the wrong answers.
Of course she had not been brought up to look for
originality or gingerbread
so at first she was quite undaunted
by his tendency to talk in strung-together cliché.
‘Just hang on and we’ll get you out of there’
he hollered like a fireman in some soap opera
when she confided her plight (the old
hag inside etc. & how trapped she was);
well, it was corny but
he did look sort of gorgeous
axe and all.
So there she was, humming & pulling
all the pins out of her chignon,
throwing him all the usual lifelines
till, soon, he was shimmying in & out
every other day as though
he owned the place, bringing her
the sex manuals & skeins of silk
from which she was meant, eventually,
to weave the means of her own escape.
‘All very well & good,’ she prompted,
‘but when exactly?’
She gave him till
well past the bell on the timeclock.
She mouthed at him, hinted,
she was keener than a T.V. quizmaster
that he should get it right.
‘I’ll do everything in my power’ he intoned, ‘but
the impossible (she groaned) might
take a little longer.’ He grinned.
She pulled her glasses off.
‘All the better
to see you with my dear?’ he hazarded.
She screamed, cut off her hair.
‘Why you’re beautiful?’ he guessed tentatively.
‘No, No, No!’ she
shrieked & stamped her foot so
hard it sank six cubits through the floorboards.
‘I love you?’ he came up with
as finally she tore herself in two.
Important notes on the poem
• ‘had come to almost love her tower,’
This is not a cliché. She is expected to hate her tower, like Rapunzel, but she
doesn’t she rather likes it. She’s happy in herself and is very self-contained
and independent.
• ‘it was corny but he did look sort of gorgeous axe and all’
This is an unconventional use of ‘corny.’ It shows her feelings towards the
Prince using modern language. ‘Axe and all is a representation of electric
guitar. He could be in a band – this is playing on the idea that all women are
attracted to people in bands and she is in this case.
• ‘she was keener than a T.V. quizmaster’
She’s became very enthusiastic, she’s encouraging/ supportive of the Prince
in rescuing her. Remember T.V. quizmasters are very eager and overly keen for
you to get the answer right. She’s giving the Prince all of the answers and he’s
still unable to help her to escape.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSb0PFt_0x4
Important notes on the poem
• ‘throwing him all the usual lifelines’
She’s helping the Prince out, throwing her hair out of the tower.
• ‘So there she was, humming and pulling
all the pins out of her chignon,’
It seems like she is making a lot of effort and the Prince isn’t really
doing anything. Her hair might be causing her pain or she might be
enjoying pulling the pins out her hair for a sense of relief as her long
hair has been tied up all day.
• ‘as finally she tore herself in two.’
Interests the reader as she is so frustrated that she ‘tore herself in
two,’ relates back to Rumpelstiltskin. This shows her aggression and
anger. It also tells us that the Prince is useless and he could not give
her what she needed.
Questions
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Why does the poet use ‘&’ instead of using the word ‘and’?
What does the poet mean when she says ‘axe and all’?
How many examples of fairy tales can you see in Rapunzstiltskin?
Explain what ‘he hollered like a fireman in some soap opera’ means.
Explain what ‘she was keener than a T.V. quizmaster that he should get it
right’ means?
6. Why do you think the maiden tore herself in two at the end of the
poem?
7. Why does ‘This Prince’ have capital letters at the start of each word?
What does this do to the phrase?
8. Why does Liz Lochhead use a question mark at the end of ‘I love you?’
9. In your own words, explain how this poem is different to conventional
fairy tales?
10. In your own words, explain what a cliché is and why we should avoid
using them in our writing? Can you think of any examples of clichés?
Glossary
•alliteration
Repetition of an initial consonant.
•ambiguity
The possibility of more than one meaning.
•assonance
Repetition of a vowel sound.
•couplet
Two successive lines of verse.
•imagery
The use of words to evoke pictures or images.
•irony
Words implying a meaning opposite to their normal meaning.
•metaphor
Implication of a resemblance between two different things.
•mood
Atmosphere, for example ‘sombre’, ‘tragic’, ‘comic’, ‘joyful’, ‘romantic’. This is different from the tone of a poem, which refers to the
poet’s attitude, for example ‘bitter’, ‘angry’, ‘resentful’, ‘cynical’, ‘sad’, ‘ironic’, ‘mocking’.
•pun
A comic effect suggesting two meanings from one word or phrase.
•rhyme
A pair of words with a similar final vowel sound.
•rhythm
The pace at which it seems appropriate to read a poem. Many poets vary the rhythm of a poem to stress certain words and
thereby make the meaning clearer.
•satire
The use of wit or humour to attack something.
•simile
A metaphor in which the similarity is expressed explicitly.
•structure
The division of a poem into particular lengths of lines and stanzas.
Imagery
• Just hang on and we’ll get you out of there’
he hollered like a fireman in some soap opera
• She mouthed at him, hinted,
she was keener than a T.V. quizmaster
that he should get it right.
Themes
• Feminism
• Men disappoint women
- “…This Prince
with absolutely
all the wrong answers.“
• From the woman’s perspective
- He seems to be only interested in sex, totally unaware of what the woman
wants
• Clichés and stereotypes
– ‘This Prince’ only talks in “strung-together cliché”
• “All the better to see you with my dear”
• “Just hang on and we’ll get you out of there”
– She is used to her isolation (“& just when our maiden had got/good &
used to her isolation”) but conforms to society’s expectations – a man
should come and save her
Example of an essay
This is a narrative poem which means that it tells a story. Liz Lochhead combines parts from the fairy
stories in order to look at the relationship between men and women from a different point of view. It is
a modern poem with feminist undertones. Unlike in traditional fairy tales, there is no happy ending. It
ends in disappointment and disillusionment for the woman.
Compared to traditional fairy stories, there is a difference in the presentation between men and
women. In the modern poem, the man is the weaker character. He is treated as a 'sex object' in the
poem. (Lines 17 and 18 for example). The man seems to be only interested in sex - without any
commitment. He seems to be totally unaware of what the woman wants.
The female character seems to be enjoying her isolation in the tower. But, she conforms to society's
expectations (see lines 8 and 9 for examples). So she decides that she needs a man to help her out - just
as society expects.
However, she becomes increasingly frustrated by his attitude. He seems to have no idea what she wants
from him. He always appears to be out of step with her. For example, he gives the right response to the
question proposed. In the end, she is destroyed by her frustration
The poem ‘Rapunzstiltskin’ comes under two different categories; passionate
and light hearted. We can see that it is very light headed because the poems
main structure is about fairy tales. Is it very informal too as we can see in the
first line where it starts off with “&”. This makes it sound like we have just
walked into someone’s conversation. From this we know that it is not a
serious poem. The author refers many times to different fairy tales such as
the lumberjack in ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, and ‘Jack and The Bean Stalk’. In
the poem the author uses many sexual comments. One of these is describing
something like a fireman, a fireman may be one of the most common woman
fantasies . The fireman would have a big hose, and would be able to rescue
the woman. We cannot take the author seriously and this proves that it is a
very fun and playful poem. However, there is also plenty of passion floating
around because this maiden in the poem has told herself she doesn’t need
anyone, but she cannot see that she really needs to be rescued. All she needs
is a Prince, but there is one problem with this prince. He is a typical man, and
doesn’t know what to say and doesn’t know how to her give her what she
wants. He tries to control the relationship after they have had sex .he believes
that he now has the right and can do what he likes with her. All he needs to
say to her is that he loves her. He makes a stab at it but fails miserably and
then starts guessing. She is very frustrated and stamps her foot into the
floorboards. She finally realises that she isn’t going to get what she wants.
She has had enough and has lost it all now. She has put up with him so much
and backed him up and helped him, but he has been an ignorant fool. All the
passion has now faded away, but there was once a roaring flame in them
both.
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