S5 the sniper
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S5 the sniper

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S5 the sniper S5 the sniper Document Transcript

  • Choose a short story which explores an important theme. By referring to appropriate techniques, show how the author has explored this theme. ·'face of a student' - charaterisation, more quotes from same bit ·truck - word choice, imagery, more quotes from the same bit ·shriek - include both killings, word choice, imagery, sentence structure ·shoots other sniper - word choice, sentence structure, tension ·discovers it's his brother - tone, climax
  • The Sniper by Liam O’Flaherty - Textual Analysis Questions 1. a) Identify readers who you think would enjoy this text, suggesting a key theme that they would be interested in. b) With close reference to the text, give evidence for your view. 2. ‘His face was the face of a student … used to looking at death.’ How does O’Flaherty establish the character of the sniper, right from his first description? 3) Explain why the sniper is unsure whether or not to smoke a cigarette. 4) How is the armoured car described? Quote two expressions and explain their effect. 5) ‘The turret opened. … fell with a shriek into the gutter.’ Quote one aspect the language used here and discuss its effect. 6) Explain the steps the sniper takes to kill the enemy sniper. 7) ‘The Republican sniper smiled and lifted his revolver … his arm shook with the recoil.’ How does O’Flaherty generate suspense in this paragraph using: i) word choice ii) sentence structure? Give specific examples and explain their use. 8) ‘His enemy had been hit. …. Then it lay still.’ Quote one example of language used here and discus how it contributes to the description of the action. 9) a) From the following, pick the phrase which best describes th e sniper’s reaction to his enemy’s death. i) Relieved ii) Triumphant iii) Dejected iv) Confused v) Guilty b) Quote an expression which helped you make your choice. 10) How successful do you think the story was at illustrating the bitter and brutal nature of civil war? Support your answer with detailed evidence from the text.
  • His face was the face of a student, thin and ascetic, but his eyes had the cold gleam of the fanatic. They were deep and thoughtful, the eyes of a man who is used to looking at death. 'the eyes of a man who is used to looking at death' - experienced with seeing a lot of death ' face of a student' - young His eyes 'were deep and thoughtful' - not naturally a killer 'cold gleam of the fanatic'
  • Technique - characterisation Quote Analysis 'the face of a student' - young and intelligent 'cold gleam' - lacks emotion 'fanatic' - suggests obsessed with something eyes 'were deep and thoughtful' - aware of what he is doing and wh 'the eyes of a man who is used to looking at death' - been fighting fo a long time already. Theme - By showing a young intelligent man in such a state, O'Flaherty shows how civil war can change and damage people
  • Technique - imagery and word choice Quote Analysis 'dull panting' - (imagery) compares it to a large, possible dangerous animal 'grey monster' - (word choice/imagery) big and frightening 'advanced slowly' - creates tension and makes it appear menacing 'enemy car' - (word choice) shows it is against the sniper and that apparently everything is on one side or the other 'bullets would never pierce the steel' - strong and invincible Theme - Shows how frightening, tense and serious a society involved in a civil war becomes
  • Quote one example of language used here and discuss how it contributes to the description of the action. His enemy had been hit. He was reeling over the parapet in his death agony. He struggled to keep his feet, but he was slowly falling forward as if in a dream. The rifle fell from his grasp, hit the parapet, fell over, bounded off the pole of a barber's shop beneath and then clattered on the pavement. Then the dying man on the roof crumpled up and fell forward. The body turned over and over in space and hit the ground with a dull thud. Then it lay still. 'death agony' - emphasises pain of his death. It was not instant and painless. 'struggled' - lack of control 'clattered' - onomatopoeia, harsh sound 'dull thud' - onomatopoeia, 'dull' meaningless, no real feeling or respect for the dead soldier 'grasp' - connotations of panic and desperation 'crumpled' - like a worthless bit of paper or litter
  • Technique - word choice Quote Analysis 'death agony' - emphasises pain of his death. It was not instant and painless. 'struggled' - lack of control 'clattered' - onomatopoeia, harsh sound 'dull thud' - onomatopoeia, 'dull' meaningless, no real feeling or respect for the dead soldier 'grasp' - connotations of panic and desperation 'crumpled' - like a worthless bit of paper or litter Theme - shows violence and lack of glamour of death in war
  • The Republican sniper smiled and lifted his revolver above the edge of the parapet. The distance was about fifty yards--a hard shot in the dim light, and his right arm was paining him like a thousand devils. He took a steady aim. His hand trembled with eagerness. Pressing his lips together, he took a deep breath through his nostrils and fired. He was almost deafened with the report and his arm shook with the recoil. 'trembled' - suggested nervous or scared 'eagerness' 'shook' 'deafened' Relatively short sentences. Describe the sniper's actions. Building up to the final shot.
  • Techniques - word choice and sentence structure. Quote Analysis 'trembled' - suggested nervous or scared 'eagerness' - suggests anticipation 'shook' - violent movement contrasts the slow build up 'deafened' - violent reaction contrasts the slow build up Relatively short sentences. Describe the sniper's actions. Building up to the final shot. Makes the reader wait for the climax.
  • The turret opened. A man's head and shoulders appeared, looking toward the sniper. The sniper raised his rifle and fired. The head fell heavily on the turret wall. The woman darted toward the side street. The sniper fired again. The woman whirled round and fell with a shriek into the gutter. 'shriek' 'whirled' (WC) connotations of wounded animal (WC) connotations of dramatic, uncontrolled movement lots of short sentences, describing the stages of the killing, , creates tension leading up to the climax of the killings
  • Technique - word choice and sentence structure Quote Analysis 'shriek' (WC) connotations of wounded animal 'whirled' (WC) connotations of dramatic, uncontrolled movement Evidence and Analysis lots of short sentences, describing the stages of the killing, , creates tension leading up to the climax of the killings
  • Just then an armoured car came across the bridge and advanced slowly up the street. It stopped on the opposite side of the street, fifty yards ahead. The sniper could hear the dull panting of the motor. His heart beat faster. It was an enemy car. He wanted to fire, but he knew it was useless. His bullets would never pierce the steel that covered the gray monster. dull panting grey monster advanced slowly enemy car bullets would never pierce the steel that covered
  • The sniper looked at his enemy falling and he shuddered. The lust of battle died in him. He became bitten by remorse. The sweat stood out in beads on his forehead. Weakened by his wound and the long summer day of fasting and watching on the roof, he revolted from the sight of the shattered mass of his dead enemy. His teeth chattered, he began to gibber to himself, cursing the war, cursing himself, cursing everybody. He looked at the smoking revolver in his hand, and with an oath he hurled it to the roof at his feet. The revolver went off with a concussion and the bullet whizzed past the sniper's head. He was frightened back to his senses by the shock. His nerves steadied. The cloud of fear scattered from his mind and he laughed.
  • Technique - characterisation Quote he '..looked at his enemy falling and he shuddered. The lust of battle died in him. He became bitten by remorse.' Analysis when the adrenalin goes, the sniper faces the reality of what he has done Quote revolted from the sight of the shattered mass of his dead enemy. ' Analysis 'revolted' - word choice, shows disgust 'shattered mass' - the body is no longer recognisably human 'gibber' - connotations of madness 'cursing the war, cursing himself, cursing everybody.' - angry at the whole situation
  • The sniper darted across the street. A machine gun tore up the ground around him with a hail of bullets, but he escaped. He threw himself face downward beside the corpse. The machine gun stopped. Then the sniper turned over the dead body and looked into his brother's face. 'darted' - (wc) quick, sneaking, in danger, scared 'a hail of bullets' - (metaphor[imagery]) lots, hail is unpleasant and painful 'tore' - (wc/im) shows how violent the bullets are as the rip the ground as if it's paper
  • Technique - imagery and word choice Quote 'darted' scared 'a hail of bullets' 'tore' bullets ground as if it's Analysis - (wc) quick, sneaking, in danger, - (metaphor[imagery]) lots, hail is unpleasant and painful - (wc/im) shows how violent the are as the rip the paper Theme - The fact the sniper is still being attacked shows there is no end to the horror and danger in a civil war
  • Technique - climax, sentence structure Quote 'Then the sniper turned over the dead body and looked into his brother's face.' Analysis - (ss) one-sentence paragraph for greater impact. (tone) matter of fact and blunt tone making the fact painfully obvious. (symbolism) shows how close the opposing sides are. The sniper killing his brother symbolises how the nation is destroying itself. Theme - Shows how divisive, brutal and destructive civil war is.
  • Introduction Paragraph 1 - Setting - guns, armoured car etc Paragraph 2 - Killing of the old woman and armoured car driver Paragraph 3 - Tension of killing the other sniper Paragraph 4 - The sniper’s reaction to the killing Paragraph 5 - climax - dead brother Conclusion
  • Topic Sentences - include them, mention techniques, don't quote 'O'Flaherty uses characterisation to show the brutal effects of civil war.' Don't dump quotes on the page then write about them. The writer describes the sniper having 'the face of a student'. Use joining words
  • Joining Words and however so in the same way but because although on the other hand
  • Topic sentence - general, no quotes O'Flaherty uses characterisation to show the brutal effects of civil war. The writer describes the sniper having 'the face of a student'. This shows that he is a young man, possible recently out of school. Also, the writer describes the sniper having a 'cold gleam' in his eyes. This shows he his focused and lacks emotion. In the same way, O'Flaherty portrays the sniper as being a 'fanatic'. This shows he is obsessed. In this way, O'Flaherty shows how civil war can change and damage people. Quotes nicely blended in Joining words Link back to the question