Landscape with the Fall of Icarus: Comparing Visual and Written Texts

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NATIONAL INITIATIVE MATH + SCIENCE

English

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus

: Comparing Visual and Written Texts

Activity One: Analyzing a Painting

Use the image projected by your teacher to answer the following questions.

1.

The title of the painting is The artist is 2.

Write a brief description of the scene depicted in the painting.

Imagery

consists of words or phrases that appeal to any of the five senses.

Mood

is the emotional atmosphere in a literary work (how the work makes the reader feel). Though we most often discuss the terms imagery and mood in connection with literary works, they can be applied to visual texts as well. .

.

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English —Landscape with the Fall of Icarus: Comparing Visual and Written Texts

3.

Using details in the painting, complete the chart below.

Sound Taste

MOOD

Touch Smell Sight

Copyright © 2013 National Math + Science Initiative, Dallas, Texas. All rights reserved. Visit us online at www.nms.org.

English —Landscape with the Fall of Icarus: Comparing Visual and Written Texts

4.

Look at the words you wrote in the graphic for Question 3 to describe the mood of the painting. Think about that mood in the context of what is happening. Then complete this statement: While Icarus is drowning, the others in the painting are mood of the painting can be described as idea that . The which demonstrates the .

The

theme

is the central message of a literary work, the idea the author wishes to convey about the subject. It is expressed as a sentence or general statement about life or human nature. To determine the theme of a work, the reader must think about all the elements of the work—including mood—to make inferences about the themes implied in that literary work. Though we most often discuss the term theme in connection with literary works, it can be applied to visual texts as well. 5.

Look at the idea you wrote for Question 4 and think about how the details that create the mood of the painting reveal Brueghel’s general statement about life or human nature. Then write a thematic statement about the painting,

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus

. What does this painting have to say about human experience?

6.

List three or more specific details from the painting that support this theme.

Copyright © 2013 National Math + Science Initiative, Dallas, Texas. All rights reserved. Visit us online at www.nms.org.

English —Landscape with the Fall of Icarus: Comparing Visual and Written Texts

Activity Two

:

Analyzing a Poem

Read the following poem and then answer the questions below.

5 10 15 20

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus

By William Carlos Williams

According to Brueghel when Icarus fell it was spring a farmer was ploughing his field the whole pageantry of the year was awake tingling near the edge of the sea concerned with itself sweating in the sun that melted the wings’ wax unsignificantly off the coast there was a splash quite unnoticed this was Icarus drowning 1.

Notice that there is no end punctuation in the poem and very little capitalization. Read the poem again to determine how it should be divided into sentences. After discussing this with your class, add periods and indicate which words should be capitalized.

2.

Write a brief description of the scene depicted in the poem.

Copyright © 2013 National Math + Science Initiative, Dallas, Texas. All rights reserved. Visit us online at www.nms.org.

English —Landscape with the Fall of Icarus: Comparing Visual and Written Texts Tone

is a writer’s attitude toward a subject, character, or audience. It is conveyed through various literary elements including the writer’s diction.

Connotation

refers to the feelings and attitudes associated with a word beyond its denotation, or dictionary meaning. The feelings we associate with words can be described as positive, negative, or neutral. 3.

Complete the chart below by listing words from the poem that have positive connotations and words that have negative connotations.

Positive Connotations Negative Connotations

4.

Based on the words you listed in the chart above, what two words could you use to describe the tone of this poem?

and 5.

Now complete this statement, based on your analysis of the poem: While Icarus is drowning, the rest of the world is . The tone of the poem can be described as and which demonstrates the idea that .

Copyright © 2013 National Math + Science Initiative, Dallas, Texas. All rights reserved. Visit us online at www.nms.org.

6.

English —Landscape with the Fall of Icarus: Comparing Visual and Written Texts

The

theme

is the central message of a literary work, the idea the author wishes to convey about the subject. It is expressed as a sentence or general statement about life or human nature. To determine the theme of a work, the reader must think about all the elements of the work—including tone—to make inferences about the themes implied in that literary work. Look at the idea you wrote for Question 5, and then write a thematic statement about the poem, “Landscape with the Fall of Icarus.” What does this poem have to say about human experience?

7.

List three or more words or phrases from the poem that support this theme.

Activity Three: Writing an Essay

the fall of Icarus in the painting by Pieter Brueghel and the poem by William Carlos Williams.

feel free to develop your own focus for analysis.

Review your answers to Activities One and Two, and then write an essay that compares the depiction of As a starting point, you may want to consider what is emphasized, absent, or different in the two texts, but Develop your essay by providing textual evidence from both texts. Be sure to follow the conventions of standard English.

Copyright © 2013 National Math + Science Initiative, Dallas, Texas. All rights reserved. Visit us online at www.nms.org.

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