Identify a motif or leitmotif in the play: a repeated phrase, an object, or a stock situation.

English 214 – Introduction to Major Literary Genres: Drama
Dandies and Top Girls: Class, Gender, and Performance in British Drama and Popular Culture

John Osborne, Look Back in Anger
Discussion Questions

Instructions for discussion leaders:

Choose one topic from the prompts.
Each topic includes many questions. Focus on one or two questions within your topic.
Focus on one passage from the play.
Articulate your response to these questions as a short argument in which you analyze the passage in detail.
Take notes and open the conversation by offering your argument in 5 – 10 minutes.

Discussion Leaders II-B: Maddie Fairchild, Jacob Goodman, and Nick Hager – R 10/1

Topic 3. Language: Motif

Identify a motif or leitmotif in the play: a repeated phrase, an object, or a stock situation. What does this motif convey about important themes in the play, and/or about one of the characters? How is this motif depicted? How do characters relate to this object or how do they employ this phrase: in what contexts? Why is this an important motif in the play?
Topic 4. Language and Theme: Performance

How does Look Back in Anger thematize performance? What roles does Jimmy assume? What aspects about his personality is he performing through these roles and how? What do these roles allow him to express? What is the role of humor in Jimmy’s language? Is Jimmy a witty character: how so? Focus on his language and describe how he employs epigrams, metaphors, rhymes, or any other device. What is the effect of Jimmy’s language in the specific passage you are analyzing?

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