Dover Beach Textual Analysis Feedback

  • Need to establish a clear overall argument/evaluative stance – what is the significance of the scene Arnold describes? What themes/concepts are explored? How does he do this?
  • Only a couple of you actually mentioned pathetic fallacy as a technique – TECHNIQUES ARE ESSENTIAL!!!
  • Not many people picked up on the shift in atmosphere, moving from positive imagery to a sense of loss as the poem progresses.
  • Some of you thought this was a war poem – interesting interpretation, but it’s not.
  • Also, a lot of people shied away from the structure here – don’t be afraid of it, as dealing with it head on can really enhance your analysis, i.e. the ‘muddled’ rhyme scheme here is actually a mixed up sonnet in the first section of the poem, not only breaking with tradition, but creating a sense of disharmony and uncertainty.
  • Lots of people not annotating their poems – so helpful, please try to do this, as well as plan.
  • Some responses particularly short and lacking depth – what you have is fine, but there’s nowhere near enough of it. You have an hour and a half. Get to it.

Sylvia Plath Presentations

Hello folks,

To help your critical analysis, and future revision, here’s a collection of the Plath presentations you all delivered before the holidays.













Plath Critical Reading

Hello folks,

Here’s the links to the Plath articles I’d like to you to read over the holidays – please have studied and digested these for Monday 24th October. It’ll really help with your understanding of Plath, and get you used to the language of critical writing that you will need to refer to in your dissertations.




Literary Study – Plath

Hello dears,

As you know, on Monday 29th August you will begin writing a Literary Study-style response to a question on Plath and the three questions we have studied so far. This is OPEN BOOK so you can have your plan in front of you, and will have an hour and a half in total.

Make sure your plan is completed for Monday, along with your DISSERTATION PROPOSALS.


  • Using your notes on ‘Blackberrying’, ‘Sleep in the Mojave Desert’ and ‘Arrival of the Bee Box’, you are going to plan a response to the below question.
  • We will write this on Monday and Tuesdays lessons, totalling 90 minutes.

With reference to at least three poems by a particular poet, discuss the effectiveness of the poet’s use of nature and the natural world in the presentation of significant themes and ideas.