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January 29, 2020, 12:04:52 pm

Author Topic: QCE Literature Question Thread  (Read 1089 times)

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RuiAce

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QCE Literature Question Thread
« on: February 20, 2019, 06:13:48 pm »
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QCE LITERATURE Q&A THREAD

What is this thread for?
If you have general questions about the QCE Literature course (both Units 1&2 and 3&4) or how to improve in certain areas, this is the place to ask! 👌


Who can/will answer questions?
Everyone is welcome to contribute; even if you're unsure of yourself, providing different perspectives is incredibly valuable.

Please don't be dissuaded by the fact that you haven't finished Year 12, or didn't score as highly as others, or your advice contradicts something else you've seen on this thread, or whatever; none of this disqualifies you from helping others. And if you're worried you do have some sort of misconception, put it out there and someone else can clarify and modify your understanding! 

There'll be a whole bunch of other high-scoring students with their own wealths of wisdom to share with you, so you may even get multiple answers from different people offering their insights - very cool.


To ask a question or make a post, you will first need an ATAR Notes account. You probably already have one, but if you don't, it takes about four seconds to sign up - and completely free!

alphabeta

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Re: QCE Literature Question Thread
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2019, 07:38:04 pm »
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Hi everyone!

I am doing an assignment for 3&4 units Literature and am wondering if anyone has got any top tips for making a great creative story.

Thanks heaps guys!  :)
QCE 2020:

Literature [], Chemistry [], Physics [], Methods [], Specialist []

Bri MT

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Re: QCE Literature Question Thread
« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2019, 06:33:28 pm »
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Hi everyone!

I am doing an assignment for 3&4 units Literature and am wondering if anyone has got any top tips for making a great creative story.

Thanks heaps guys!  :)

If you haven't already I'd definitely recommend you read through Lauren's AMA, particularly this post. She's also given some great advice elsewhere about externalising the internal and internalising the external. E.g. rather than describing a person's anger describing how it physically manifests.

Elyse also wrote some great advice for HSC here that you might find useful

Hope this helps! :)

alphabeta

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Re: QCE Literature Question Thread
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2020, 11:36:19 am »
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Hi all!

For Literature, I am required to read the novel Carpentaria, by Alexis Wright. I have never read a book anything like this, and I truly just don't understand what the book is saying. I just can't really perceive the actual plot or the literary significance it carries. Many reviews have been published, and they all agree that critics don't know what to make of the novel. I also can't quite make sense of the reviews.

Has any of you read this book before? If so, can you please give me some insight on the plot and the significance of the novel?
If not, what can I do to understand this book?

By the way, I am loving this new format of the website! :)

Thanks for the help everyone!
QCE 2020:

Literature [], Chemistry [], Physics [], Methods [], Specialist []

literally lauren

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Re: QCE Literature Question Thread
« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2020, 07:30:58 pm »
+7
Hi all!

For Literature, I am required to read the novel Carpentaria, by Alexis Wright. I have never read a book anything like this, and I truly just don't understand what the book is saying. I just can't really perceive the actual plot or the literary significance it carries. Many reviews have been published, and they all agree that critics don't know what to make of the novel. I also can't quite make sense of the reviews.

Has any of you read this book before? If so, can you please give me some insight on the plot and the significance of the novel?
If not, what can I do to understand this book?

By the way, I am loving this new format of the website! :)

Thanks for the help everyone!
Hey alphabeta!

Congrats on getting one of the hardest Lit texts on the QCAA list ;D

Couple of different tips:

1. Acknowledge the complexity
Typically you're not expected to have all the answers in Literature, and good essays will justify a thesis while discussing potential alternate readings, or commenting on the text being open to other possible interpretations. So don't feel like you have to wrestle with a text until you've found the "right" answers - so long as you can conduct an interesting and effective discussion about the meaning within the book, you'll be fine!

2. Observe how Wright blurs lines between what is real/surreal/unreal
This is a text comprised of different stories woven together, both in terms of plot and historical myths and allegories. One thing that I'd imagine critics get frustrated by is that it's sometimes difficult to tell what's actually happening in the text, and what is 'real' or verifiable. I think the safest argument is that WRIGHT DOES THIS INTENTIONALLY (spoiler: we kind of assume that's always the case with authors in Literature) and so our job is to assume that this blended cultural narrative is deliberately written this way to make a broader point about people and the world.

3. Research Indigenous oral history
This site has a pretty good overview to get you started, but try to get a handle on what oral histories are, and how/why they are passed on. This is arguably the most important part of the book; it's kind of like Wright takes inspiration from oral history and then creates an oral history in the form of a novel... that contradiction is probably why the book is somewhat confusing and divisive! 

4. Accept the non-linear time and roll with it!
A good tip for reading books like this, if you haven't gotten through it already, is to just read it like a stream of consciousness ramble, without pausing to think about what the heck is going on. Without wanting to sound too artsy, just focus on how the flow of the language makes you ~feel~ ... it might seem silly, but you probably won't gain much by doing the opposite and trying to study every sentence. The text is a torrent of words, so just let yourself get swept up in it, and then you can analyse this sense you get of language and meaning later.

5. Go back to basics
Consider the form/genre, language, audience, and purpose of this text.
 - Form: yes it's a novel, but as aforementioned, it has a lot in common with oral history and defies some of the typical constraints of a novel. You may also want to look into some of the genres that this text (sort of) belongs to (e.g. magical realism, the antinovel, literary non-fiction, etc.)
 - Language: look into the Indigenoush words used in the text and the traditions these connect to. Also, think about how you would characterise Wright's writing style. Is it dream-like? Reverent? Disjointed? Ponderous? Abstruse?
 - Audience: who do you think Wright is writing for? How might she want them to reconsider their beliefs, or what might she want them to feel for the characters and cultures she depicts?
 - Purpose: similarly, why do you think Wright wrote this book? I'm not sure if she's given any interviews, but that's definitely worth researching!

Hopefully that helps a bit - please let me know if any of this didn't make sense. And it sounds like you've done a lot of good groundwork already by reading up on critical reviews! Keep doing that, and perhaps even note down the recurring themes or points in their arguments, as they can help shape your perspective.

Good luck! ;D

edit: just from a quick google, this review is pretty apt! The Guardian review gets a little more caught up in flattery, but also might help make sense of some of the plot.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2020, 07:36:09 pm by literally lauren »