Question Four - the Redhill Academy

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Section A - Reading
Question 4: Language Comparison
Approaching and answering
Question 4
Language devices used
by non-fiction writers.
Which can we recall? In
a different colour,
suggest a typical effect
of these devices.
Hint: Think about Question 2
Question 4: Language Comparison
•16 marks
•30 minutes, including active reading time
•You need to identify 3 or 4 devices (techniques, or features)
used in two texts
•Analyse the effect of some of these devices; comment on
similarities and differences of the two texts
How is language used for effect?
Language is always used for some kind of effect or other. Often, without commenting
on specific linguistic devices, you can talk about the kind of language a writer uses,
noticing what kind of words are used, or what kind of tone or style is created by
language and structure. Look at these examples…
The writer uses dramatic and violent language in order to describe the
horror of the attack at the end of the extract. Phrases like “chill horror”,
“sudden fear” and “thunderous crack” portray the fear and terror
experienced by the Indians who are attacked.
Powerful words such as “war”, “huge” and “ruining” emphasise and
perhaps exaggerate the seriousness of the issue.
The writer uses a chatty, informal tone, using contractions like “I’m”
“don’t” and “can’t”.
Language is highly descriptive, with adjectives such as “golden” and
“spectacular” conveying the writer’s appreciation for his surroundings.
Common linguistic devices
• 1st, 2nd or 3rd person
(narrative viewpoint)
• Directly addressing the
reader
• Imperatives
• Rhetorical questions
• Register - Formal/Informal
language
• Diction - Simple/Complex
vocabulary
• Figurative Language &
Imagery: Similes/Metaphor/
Personification etc.
• Word play & puns
• Alliteration
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Rhyme & Rhythm
Anecdote & Allusion
Slogan & Catchphrase
Statistics & Facts
Exaggeration & Hyperbole
Repetition
Humour
Lists
Emotive language
Punctuation type
Expert advice
Short sentences
Superlatives
Some common linguistic devices. What are they?
Example
“According to UK government calculations, 214 of
the most senior eurocrats get paid more than
David Cameron's £178,000 a year.”
“Human lives are nothing but a series of
unfortunate upgrades. Yes, even yours.”
“Starbucks wakes up and smells the stench of tax
avoidance controversy”
“Who's opposing the benefit cap? Who's calling for
a ringfence of council tax benefits for families in
need? Who's arguing to maintain the child tax
credit threshold? Who's fighting against families
being rehoused miles away from their children's
school? Who's calling for more social housing?”
“The ferry was packed with buses, petrol tanks,
vans, land cruisers, jeeps, fuel tankers, cars – and
people.”
Name of Language
Device(s)
Some common linguistic devices. What are they?
Example
Name of Language
Device(s)
“According to UK government calculations, 214 of
the most senior eurocrats get paid more than
David Cameron's £178,000 a year.”
“Human lives are nothing but a series of
unfortunate upgrades. Yes, even yours.”
“Starbucks wakes up and smells the stench of tax
avoidance controversy”
“Who's opposing the benefit cap? Who's calling for
a ringfence of council tax benefits for families in
need? Who's arguing to maintain the child tax
credit threshold? Who's fighting against families
being rehoused miles away from their children's
school? Who's calling for more social housing?”
“The ferry was packed with buses, petrol tanks,
vans, land cruisers, jeeps, fuel tankers, cars – and
people.”
Look out for: statistics and figures, directly addressing the reader, repetition,
alliteration, personification, sibilance, lists, rhetorical questions, humour, exaggeration…
Question 4: A Model Response
Question 4: A Model Response
The purpose of Text 1 is to inform Daily Echo readers about the achievements of Holly Budge and impress them with information
about her accomplishments. Text 2 is a descriptive piece which tells readers about a significant event in the life of the narrator: an
Apache Indian. Readers will empathise with the narrator and respond with sympathy to the awful event described in the extract.
Facts and statistics are used in Text 1 in order to stress the significance of Holly’s achievements. They serve an evidential purpose.
Holly climbed “29,500 ft”; she has made “more than 2000 jumps”; she intends to “raise £30,000” for charity. This information
impresses readers as the numbers involved are large and significant. These facts portray Holly as a brave and remarkable young
woman who has singlehandedly achieved great things. The figures suggest that her feats are extraordinary.
Now you know what kind of thing you need to write about
in your response to Question 4, you are going to see a
The superlative
“highest”
is repeated throughout
the article. Holly climbed the world’s “highest mountain” as well as achieving the
model
answer.
Notice:
“highest drop zone” by a parachutist. The repetition of this word reinforces the idea that Holly’s exploits are unique and admirable.
The article uses complex vocabulary: a diction exclusive to Holly’s profession which the reader may not be familiar with. The article
uses terms such as “high altitude”, “free fall” and “oxygen cylinder”. These technical terms are not common phrases, so they give
further authenticity to the report.
•How the student introduces their answer
many
language
made
each
text with it. In
Unlike Text •How
1, Text 2 uses
figurativepoints
language inabout
order to describe
the setting are
in the story
and thefor
narrator’s
relationship
her first-person account, Landman talks of how a tree “lowers itself to greet me” and refers to its “spirit singing”. This use of
(Highlight language devices analysed!)
personification suggests that the narrator has a close, deep relationship with her environment; it portrays her as at peace with her
surroundings.
This contrasts
sharply
with the
distressing
events later
in the extract. and contrasts
•When
and
how
the
student
compares
In contrast to Text 1, Text 2 uses a list in order to portray the Apache Indians as admirable, multi skilled people who are in sync with
their environment and daily lives. As well as “tending the fire, stirring a cooking pot”, a mother is stitching fabric and looking after
her children. Again, this harmonious description makes later events seem even more shocking and heightens the reader’s sympathy.
Another difference between the texts is that Text 2 uses dramatic and violent language in order to describe the horror of the attack
at the end of the extract. Phrases like “chill horror”, “sudden fear” and “thunderous crack” portray the fear and terror experienced by
the Indians who are attacked. This kind of language evokes sympathy in the reader, and perhaps revulsion at the attackers who have
disrupted the Apache’s harmonious existence.
Then, look at the mark scheme and suggest a mark.
As both of these texts have such different purposes and evoke very different responses from readers, they use contrasting effects.
Text 1 relies on effects which authenticate the story and impress the reader, such as facts, numbers and complex diction, whereas
Text 2, which elicits a far more emotional response, employs descriptive, dramatic and emotive language for effect.
Question 4: A Model Response
The purpose of Text 1 is to inform Daily Echo readers about the achievements of Holly Budge and impress them with information
about her accomplishments. Text 2 is a descriptive piece which tells readers about a significant event in the life of the narrator: an
Apache Indian. Readers will empathise with the narrator and respond with sympathy to the awful event described in the extract.
Facts and statistics are used in Text 1 in order to stress the significance of Holly’s achievements. They serve an evidential purpose.
Holly climbed “29,500 ft”; she has made “more than 2000 jumps”; she intends to “raise £30,000” for charity. This information
impresses readers as the numbers involved are large and significant. These facts portray Holly as a brave and remarkable young
woman who has singlehandedly achieved great things. The figures suggest that her feats are extraordinary.
The superlative “highest” is repeated throughout the article. Holly climbed the world’s “highest mountain” as well as achieving the
“highest drop zone” by a parachutist. The repetition of this word reinforces the idea that Holly’s exploits are unique and admirable.
The article uses complex vocabulary: a diction exclusive to Holly’s profession which the reader may not be familiar with. The article
uses terms such as “high altitude”, “free fall” and “oxygen cylinder”. These technical terms are not common phrases, so they give
further authenticity to the report.
Unlike Text 1, Text 2 uses figurative language in order to describe the setting in the story and the narrator’s relationship with it. In her
first-person account, Landman talks of how a tree “lowers itself to greet me” and refers to its “spirit singing”. This use of
personification suggests that the narrator has a close, deep relationship with her environment; it portrays her as at peace with her
surroundings. This contrasts sharply with the distressing events later in the extract.
In contrast to Text 1, Text 2 uses a list in order to portray the Apache Indians as admirable, multi-skilled people who are in sync with
their environment and daily lives. As well as “tending the fire, stirring a cooking pot”, a mother is stitching fabric and looking after
her children. Again, this harmonious description makes later events seem even more shocking and heightens the reader’s sympathy.
Another difference between the texts is that Text 2 uses dramatic and violent language in order to describe the horror of the attack
at the end of the extract. Phrases like “chill horror”, “sudden fear” and “thunderous crack” portray the fear and terror experienced by
the Indians who are attacked. This kind of language evokes sympathy in the reader, and perhaps revulsion at the attackers who have
disrupted the Apache’s harmonious existence.
As both of these texts have such different purposes and evoke very different responses from readers, they use contrasting effects.
Text 1 relies on effects which authenticate the story and impress the reader, such as facts, numbers and complex diction, whereas
Text 2, which elicits a far more emotional response, employs descriptive, dramatic and emotive language for effect.
1.
•Highlight the key words in the question.
•The language question is always the same: It will ask you to
compare Text 3 (or ‘Source 3’) with either Text 1 or Text 2.
•You need to be writing about how language is used in the two
texts, identifying and analysing language devices.
Compare the different ways in which language is used
for effect in the two texts.
Give some examples and analyse what the effects are.
Common purposes and
effects of non-fiction
writing
2.
Compare the different ways in which language is used for
effect in the two texts.
Give some examples and analyse what the effects are.
•Actively read the text: You are looking for particular parts of
the text where language creates a certain effect, and serves the purpose of
the article (e.g. to inform, persuade or describe).
•Highlight words, phrases, passages, statistics
etc. that will help you answer the question.
•You might like to annotate the texts very briefly with ideas that will
help you answer the question.
IN GROUPS
2.
Jigsaw Activity
We noticed…
Language is often emotive, so
the reader…
Repetition is used…
Facts and stats give authenticity…
Similarly, expert advice…
We think this is hyperbole…
3.
Writing up ideas
•Now you’re ready to write up your ideas, you need a
clear introductory sentence introducing each article. See the model answer
for help.
how language is used for effect
•Then, talk about
in
one of the texts, and then the other (making brief comparisons with the one
you’ve already written about). Conclude by giving reasons for similarities /
differences.
•Pepper your points with short quotes which give examples of
how language is used for effect. They need to be analysed, as you need to
suggest how these effects are created by the writers.
IN PAIRS
3.
Connective
Firstly
Secondly
Thirdly
As well as this
Furthermore
Moreover
Finally
Lastly
Likewise
Similarly
Unlike
As well as
In contrast to
The author / language in the
text…
Advises
Argues
Builds
Connotes
Contrasts
Conveys
Creates
Demonstrates
Describes
Depicts
Emphasises
Evokes
Exaggerates
Gives the impression
Gives a sense
Highlights
Informs
Implies
Indicates
Juxtaposes
Narrates
Persuades
Realises
Recognises
Refers to
Reflects
Represents
Reveals
Signifies
Suggests
Symbolises
Shows
Tells
The reader…
(or ‘we’…)
Is made aware
Is informed
Is told
Is shocked /
fascinated /
persuaded /
made to
sympathise etc.
Learns
Discovers
Realises
USEFUL WORDS & PHRASES
Compare the different ways in which
language is used for effect in the two
texts.
Give some examples and analyse
what the effects are.
ON YOUR OWN
Question 4: Language Comparison – Sample Mark Scheme
Compare the different ways in which
language is used for effect in the two
texts.
Give some examples and analyse
what the effects are.
ON YOUR OWN
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