Paragraph 3: The motif of mixed-race babies in Desiree’s Baby
Starting sentence: The birth of a mixed-race child is also important in Desiree’s Baby.
* When the baby is born, the relationship is destroyed as Armand believes Desiree has shamed his family and heritage.
* Desiree kills herself and her child, so both stories feature children that die. This is a way of reasserting the cultures that have been affected by the birth of the children. By killing her baby, Desiree is showing that the culture of black and white people not having relationships is right.
DB: “That the child is not white; it means that you are not white”
Paragraph 2: Racism in Desiree’s Baby
Starting sentence: Despite being set in a different country, the setting of Louisiana also involves a racist culture.
* Armand’s attitude to his wife completely changes when he thinks she is black. She kills herself and their child over the shame she has caused them.
* Desiree seeks comfort from her mother but Madame Valmond does not tell her she is white. Throughout the story, the mystery of Desiree’s biological parents plagues her life.
* The mixed-race child of La Blanche is referred to as a “quadroon” boy. The story suggests this child could also be Armand’s.
* Look at the language in the letter written by Armand’s mother, “cursed with the brand of slavery”. This suggests a person’s blackness is a supernatural punishment, whilst ‘brand’ makes us think of cattle, suggesting black people are treated no better than animals.
... disruption reaches its climax when Desiree, who everyone including her knew as white, gives birth to a baby boy that has shades of ... , only she and her innocent baby suffer from the accusation of miscegenation, whereas the mixed-race Armand Aubigny will probably not face any ... even the masters of that particular society adopted a homeless child, knowing that she belonged to a black origin, shows signs ...
“cursed with the brand of slavery” “quadroon boy”
‘How are the relationships in ‘Country Lovers’ and ‘Desiree’s Baby’ influenced by the culture in which they are set?’
Word processing guidelines:
A clear font i.e. calibri, century gothic, times new roman. Sz 12, spaced to 1.5. Please don’t use comic sans.
Paragraph 1: Hierarchy in Desiree’s Baby
Starting sentence: Hierarchy is an important part of Louisiana culture and a family’s heritage gives them a lot of power.
* Armand’s relationship with his slaves is affected as once Desiree has the baby, he stops hitting them, showing he is softening. In this situation, Armand is high in the hierarchy as he has power over his slaves.
* Think about the social hierarchy. When Armand falls in love with Desiree, her father warns Armand about her “obscure origin” showing that Desiree is low down in the hierarchy as she has no family background or status.
DB: “Young Aubigny’s rule was a strict one too, and under it his negroes had forgotten how to be gay”.
Paragraph 2: Racism in Country Lovers
Starting sentence: Racism is a key theme in Country Lovers and tells the reader a lot about the racist culture of South Africa.
This community is clearly very racist. This is shown by the fact that the white children get the opportunity to have a good education and go away to school, whereas the black children do not get a proper education. You could talk about the following:
* The fact that Paulus gets away with murdering the baby
* The suggestion from the judge that Thebedi could have had a role to play in murdering her own child and that Paulus might not be the father, implying that she has slept around.
* Njabulo builds their home in ‘white man’s style’, trying to mirror the farm house.
* The newspapers that report on the trial fail to spell Thebedi’s surname properly, suggesting the journalists have little respect for her – they are just out to get a story.
* The children learn not to play together anymore, destroying the innocence of their childhood.
... adult. No person should be forced to fight, especially children. However, children in some countries are taken away from their homes, kidnapped, and ... their own gang or group. Just like in Maslow’s’ hierarchy of needs people that have nothing are first only interested ... basic needs up to the third level of Maslow’s’ hierarchy of needs, belonging/love. With the Warlords it is more ...
CL: “The farm children play together when they are small…they soon don’t play together any more, even in the holidays”
Paragraph 3: The motif of mixed-race babies in Country Lovers
Starting sentence: It is the birth of Thebedi’s child and the danger this poses in revealing Paulus’s secret relationship that leads to the tragic events.
* We are never 100% sure that Paulus murdered the baby but it is strongly suggested.
* Look at how Paulus responds to the baby, ‘I feel like killing myself’ or ‘Don’t take it out’. The way he speaks about the child is surprising and shows how scared he is that someone will discover their secret.
* The motif of the baby relates to the theme of secrecy as Paulus kills the child in order to prevent his secret from coming out.
Use this quote:
DB: “Don’t take it out”.
Paragraph 1: Hierarchy in Country Lovers
Starting sentence: It is the hierarchy in Country Lovers that means Thebedi and Paulus can never be equals.
Hierarchy is all about who is in control and who has power. For example, in an office there are the workers and the manager, who has more power than the workers. You could talk about the following:
* This culture in South Africa has strict rules on who has the most power in the community. The white men like Paulus have lots of power whilst the black population have very little. This is shown in the trial scene.
* Hierarchy stops the relationship from working because Paulus cannot have a relationship with Thebedi when she is so low down the hierarchy.
* The children learn about hierarchy when they go to separate schools. Before this the black and white children would play together but after they go to school they start to call each other by different names. This shows how language is used to reinforce the hierarchy.
CL: “White children go away to school…the black children get some sort of schooling”
“missus and baasie”
Introduction – Say what culture means to you (if necessary, look up the dictionary definition).
... ) We have looked at how story frames and cultures affect us as individuals, how the story frames of cultures of others can affect us ... . With the examples, we can see how other peoples story frames and cultures have an affect on as individuals by lending more ... the teachers and classmates where we attended school Their story frames and culture influenced our lives for approximately twelve years if we ...
Give a brief summary of where the stories are set and who they are written by. Also mention the characters that are involved and in what ways their relationships are destroyed. Then say what it would have been like to have lived under apartheid (you can find lots of information about this online).
Say how this would have affected the black people living in these cultures, where would they have had to live or been able to go?
Paragraph 5: Structure in Country Lovers
Starting sentence: In conclusion, both stories show how culture can affect relationships.
Say whether or not you think the cultures have affected the relationships and briefly summarise the ways in which they have. Then say whether or not you think the writers have achieved anything in writing these stories – are they trying to teach us to be better people? Remember, both of these writers lived in the cultures they are criticising, which could have been a dangerous thing to do. They clearly wanted change and thought these stories would be a good way of achieving that.
Paragraph 4: The theme of secrecy in Desiree’s Baby
Starting sentence: Secrecy is similarly crucial to Desiree’s Baby.
* The secret is revealed in the final section of the story.
* The reader never finds out how Armand responds to discovering he has black heritage.
* It seems that Armand has been sleeping with his slave La Blanche, although Desiree appears unaware of this.
DB: “Our dear Armand will never know that his mother, who adores him, belongs to the race that is cursed with the brand of slavery.”
Paragraph 4: The theme of secrecy in Country Lovers
Starting sentence: The theme of secrecy is key in showing how destructive culture can be in Country Lovers.
* The fact that Thebedi lies to her father and friends about who gave her the presents.
* Thebedi never gets to stay in Paulus’ bedroom in case someone finds a trace of her there.
* Paulus kills the baby.
* They meet in secret, down by the river where nobody can see them. They meet in darkness and always separate at dawn.
* It is the cultural values of the community that stop Thebedi and Paulus being together. They can’t have a relationship because it was forbidden for a black and white person to be together.
... Explain how social organisations and relationships affect the learning process. When children start ... learning process is fun this is giving relationships a positive affect on the learning process. If a ... go. If we as adults build positive relationships with each other and show our willingness to ... been good at spelling completing crosswords and writing stories when i was younger. After having my ...
You could use the following quote:
CL: “There was a risk someone would discover her or traces of her presence if he took her to his own bedroom.”
Paragraph 5: Structure in Desiree’s Baby
Starting sentence: Structure in this story cleverly illustrates how culture affects relationships.
* The story ends on a climax with Armand realising that it is his family which contains the black heritage. This may surprise the reader as it is quite a shocking ending and we never find out how the other characters respond.
* We never discover if things will improve for the better.
* Notice how the story begins with Desiree’s birth and ends shortly after her death. Her whole life has been affected by this culture.
Paragraph 5: Structure in Country Lovers
Starting sentence: Gordimer uses structure to convey to the reader how the relationship between Paulus and Thebedi is affected by culture.
* In Country Lovers, the story ends with the jury finding Paulus not guilty of murdering the baby, showing that the society has not changed and that they will always take the word of a white man over a black woman.
* Thebedi is given the final line, “It was a thing of our childhood, we don’t see each other any more.” This is important as this is the final words the reader is left with so despite not having power throughout the story, at the end it is Thebedi who controls our final impression of the story. The words show that she has matured a lot through the story and now she has lost her innocence about love and race.
You could use the following quote:
“It was a thing of our childhood, we don’t see each other any more.”