Practice Firewatch HL Essay

How do the makers of firewatch satisfy the different male fantasies through their depictions of the female characters?

The makers of Firewatch satisfy the different male fantasies through their depictions of the female characters through Delilah’s linguistic features, which contrasts to the descriptions of Julia, Henry’s wife. I will also be exploring how Julia- Delilah’s contrast attributes to the watchers adoration of Delilah.

Practice P1: Formula 1


What techniques does Coates use to establish a tone of disappointment?

This is an article written by Formula 1, titled: "100-time GP winner Hamilton insists Norris has ‘many wins ahead’ after McLaren man is denied maiden victory in Russia" , written in September 2021. It is an article about race car driving, more specifically about a race car driver being denied a win after unexpected rain. In my essay, I will first discuss how the author uses emotional diction throughout the text to create a tone of dissapointment. I will also discuss how the author uses ethos to justify his personal bias shown in the article.

The author uses emotional diction throughout the text to create a tone of dissapointment. He does this in his use of words when describing the loss of the race driver, Lando Norris.


I found the relationship development between Michel and Alain and Veronique and Annette very interesting, because you saw how throughout the play, the male characters and the female characters bonded over their gender stereotypes. You could see Michel and Alain bonded over Whisky, cigars and the mutual agreement that the children that the meeting started about were being 'men', and that this meeting between the two couples was not necessary. The women bond over how the men began to bond, and their mutual disagreement over the fact that the boys altercation should be discussed and evaluated.

Voice lessons


He states that they are 'a thousand slimy things'

"Art is the antidote that can call us back from the edge of numbness, restoring the ability to feel for another."

  1. The author implies that antidote means the medicine or agent that will allow us to restore our ability to feel for one another. The antidote is usually a medical term for a medicine that undoes the effect of another medicine, so what the author is implying is that under the conditions we live in, we often forget to feel empathic towards others, whilst art is an agent that helps us be empathetic towards one another.

  2. The term 'gift' implies a positive occasion, such as a birthday or a baby shower. The 'edge of numbness' does not feel as an appropriate time to receive a gift. It also suggests that it is a reward for not going over the edge of numbness. 'Antidote' is a word that suggests that it is bringing us back from something bad, so we should feel relief but we should not feel positive or happy.

What caught my attention this year?

Over the year, I have become very interested in learning about cultures that I previously did not know anything about. Although I am definitely not an uncultured person, having lived in 4 countries in my lifetime and having gone to international schools for almost 9+ years, I definitely know about other cultures and customs, and have grown to love learning about them over the year.

This initially began in the beginning of the year, when I started learning about Jewish traditions and holidays through my jewish friends. I was amazed by their commitment to holidays and traditions, such as Shabbat. Friends of mine, who were about my age, would spend Friday night to Saturday night, often without phones or computers, and have a delicious meal with their family. Some would go to the Synagogue for Shabbat service prior to their dinner. Apart from the fact that I think that is an amazing tradition to have, It impressed me that kids my age had the commitment to do that, without force from their parents.

I later on discussed this with my mom, and we spoke about religion, traditions and culture- and how we may not always believe in our religion, as humans we love to be part of something bigger- this could be a mosque, basketball team, cooking club... anything that helps us feel part of something larger than ourselves. Especially after the loneliness many of us experienced in the past year and a half, it is understandable that we are more appreciative of our little traditions and communities. Although I am not religious, nor do I play basketball, one community does come to mind- My school community. With its own culture, traditions and set of beliefs, I think we can all appreciate the community that we've built and how happy we are to be back with each other. I say this without trying to sound too slimey.

Grimm Tales Essay

Thesis: The depiction of women in Grimm tales by Philip Pullman, seen in Cinderella and Snow White


P1: Portrayal of the two types of women in Cinderella

P2: The damsel in distress trope shown in Snow White

P3: The importance of beauty in women shown in both texts


Pages Cited

Educated HL Essay

How Tara Westover symbolises selective memory and dissociation as a response to violence in her memoir, Educated.

In this essay, I will be analysing the memoir by Tara Westover called Educated. Educated focuses heavily on religion, family, and most importantly, education. In this essay, I will predominantly be discussing how Tara Westover responds to violence over time though selective memory and memory repression. Selective amnesia- more commonly understood as selective memory, is understood as the tendency to remember only what one wants to remember. When trying to recall a long term memory, your brain triggers a reprocessing phase of this memory, which can cause some details to be forgotten if it was traumatic or highly sensitive. Westover symbolises selective memory often in her memoir, especially when discussing violent events- this is not uncommon in this book, as Tara grew up working in a scrap yard, she often dealt with injuries personally, but also watched as her brothers and sisters suffered highly traumatic injuries at a young age. Her family is strongly sceptical to any government help, so they often do not receive proper medical attention to their wounds. Later on in the book, it becomes apparent her older brother Shawn, is both psychologically and physically abusive to Tara. I will also be discussing instances of dissociation as a response to violence in Educated.

As mentioned before, Tara’s reflection on traumatic, often violent memories are selective. She can remember certain smells, noises, colors but cannot remember details of the actual event. The most compelling example of the selective memory represented in Educated, is when Shawn, her older brother gets into a motorcycle accident. Tara finds him on the road, bleeding out, and decides to take him to the hospital against the strong opposition of government help which had been instilled in her since birth. On page 147, she says: “When I think of that night now, I don’t think of a dark highway, or my brother lying in a pool of his own blood. I think of the waiting room, with its ice-blue sofa and pale walls. I smell its sterilized air. I hear the ticking of a plastic clock”. She distinctly remembers the color of a sofa she sat on decades ago instead of the horrifying idea of her brother bleeding out on a street, with his skull visible to her eye, which is understandable as her family up until the age of 17 had been the most important thing in her life, even after years, the memory of something traumatic happening to something you cared so deeply for, is sickening. It seems the memories of her older brother Shawn, both her enemy and her best friend, seem to be the most troubling in her memories. First, when he falls off a pallet whilst working and has a near fatal brain bleed, and second, when he has the motorcycle accident. Although later on in her life, after both these incidents, Shawn becomes abusive and bipolar, before these brain injuries he was a sweet, caring older brother to Tara. They worked on the scrapyard together, went on a long road trip together, and he always seemed to be a troubling, yet sweet brother. It becomes understandable that when Tara writes her memoir, she cannot fully remember the two main events which led to her brother's personality change, and inevitably to his abuse towards her. For Tara, these main two events have such terrible consequences to her relationship with her brother, and inevitably, her family, that she has repressed the majority of these memories deep down. When Shawn falls off the pallet in the chapter ‘My feet no longer touch earth’ (page 130), she says: “I remember strangely little of the hospital, or of how my brother looked. I vaguely recall that his head was wrapped in gauze, and that when I asked why, Mother said the doctors had performed a surgery…- actually, I can’t remember what she said.” Again, this shows over time Tara forgets a large amount of this traumatic experience, because it's so upsetting.

Dissociation, according to WebMD, is ‘a break in how your mind handles information. You may feel disconnected from your thoughts, feelings, memories, and surroundings.’ 2 , so when reflecting on an event years later, because you dissociated during that particular moment, you cannot remember the details of an event. Although this is less common, it is still seen often throughout Educated, especially as an immediate response to violence or trauma. Sometimes, when something extremely unexpected happens, especially traumatic, it can be too much for the brain to process, so it shuts down. This can be seen in chapter 16, ‘Disloyal man, disobedient Heaven’, when Tara rushes Shawn off to the hospital when he is in a motorcycle accident. When she places her unconcious, bleeding brother in her car, she recalls: “My thoughts wandered wildly, feverishly, through a fog of resentment. The state was dreamlike, as if the hysteria had freed me from a fiction, that five minutes before, I had needed to believe.” - this shows the dissociation Tara has from the hysterical minutes she had just had. And as discussed before, there is a pattern in the book: When Tara reflects on the events of her brother, the memories seem to be clouded- this could be through repression, or through dissociation. She could have dissociated in the moment and now experience dissociative amnesia, where she cannot remember a part of an event because she dissociated in the moment. In those moments, her brother was her best friend, her protector, and the idea of him being hurt, or even worse, dying, could have been enough for Tara to dissociate as a coping mechanism to the sadness she felt she did not deserve to feel.

In this essay, I discussed how Tara Westover, the protagonist/ writer of Educated, shows her response to traumatic and violent events through dissociation and selective memory. We focused mainly on the two events concerning her older brother, Shawn, and how the result of these events caused for the personality change in Shawn that led to the abuse towards Tara. More specifically, we analysed how Tara reflected on these events years later, and how selective memory could have been a result of dissociation.

Shadow Scholar Essay

In this Essay I will be discussing a piece written by an anonymous writer for the Chronicle of Higher Education. The text is called The Shadow Scholar, it is a commentary on the Higher education system from a writer who is paid to write college essays for other students around the world. His targeted audience is higher education professors, as he is discrediting their work as many students still pay money because they either don't understand their course or don't want to. In this commentary I will be analysing how the writer creates a critical and condescending tone, and I will also be analysing how the structure of the text strengthens the argument of the author.

P1: Tone- Main interest
The writer of this text wants to make it clear that his job shows the incompetence of the teaching in higher education, which he does by listing the amount of different bachelor degrees he has worked on, to show the variety of higher education he has worked on, without taking the course he has been able to fool professors into thinking he is a student of theirs. In line 25, he says:" you would be amazed by the incompetence of your students writing."
The use of language in this particular sentence is striking as he calls the students incompetent, which is very harsh, seeing as these same students are his customers, but then he shifts the blame from the students to the teachers in line 29, when he says: "I live well on the desperation, misery, and incompetence that your educational system has created". Specifically, "your educational system", he points a clear finger and explains that this is the creation of these teachers. He does not suggest, he states that this is because of the education system built by the intended audience of this text.

P2: Language (structure, syntax, genre conventions, etc.)
The writer of this text uses short, simple sentences to emphasise the message to his audience. For example, in line 19 he simply states: " I've attended three dozen online universities". He does not use any complex sentence structure to


Little Red Riding Hood

Today I will be analysing the classic Little Red Riding Hood in comparison to the adaptation of Carol Ann Duffy, Little Red-Cap. I will be comparing the character roles between the two texts, as well as analysing how these two contrast each other and how this creates a different message/conclusion. I will also be analysing the conventional characteristics of both texts, and how these affect the text.

The conventional character roles are switched around in the two texts, giving Carol Ann Duffy’s text a sadistic, more evil tone. In almost all conventional fairytales, the main character is a young, innocent, caring girl who must be saved from a terrible conflict in which she will get hurt, and gets saved by a strong, heroic man that rescues her. This is also a reflection on real life relationships. Men in relationships have to protect their female partners often virginal innocence, which is often portrayed in film and literature. For many people, due to this constant conditioning since childhood, A mans ability to protect their female partner (usually in a violent manner) is interpreted and understood as love and heroism. In the conventional story of Little Red Riding Hood, she is an extremely obedient, innocent, young girl who is preyed on by the evil wolf. In Carol Ann Duffy’s adaptation, it is seen that the young girl uses her innocence to catch the attention of the wolf, who she is seeking out romantically. She is not scared of him, and she almost manipulates him. This is shown when she says:” I made quite sure he spotted me, sweet sixteen, never been, babe, waif”.

Educated Task

  1. Tara dissociates from herself to cope with the physical abuse from her brother Shawn. This is very clear when she writes in p194:" But I don't sound like myself. I'm listening to the sobs of another girl.". As she is on the ground, with Shawn pinning her arms up, she is begging to be let go. When she does this, she is crying but she doesn't register it as herself crying, but as someone else crying. This is a very common form of dissociation. She feels ashamed that this is happening to her, near the car of Charles, and many people looking, so her brain pretends she is not there. This helps her not feel the physical pain of being pinned on the concrete floor by her older brother, but also the fear and emotional agony of her brothers bipolar episodes. Tara either receives great love and affection from her brother, or serious torture and abuse- two great contradictions, which when happening back to back, makes Tara question whether the abuse she is enduring is even abuse, or just his form of love and affection.

  2. Tara distorts the truth as a form of denial to the abuse she endures. This is shown by the consist use of rhetoric. Questions without an answer often show confusion, as she is questioning herself on the series of events, as if she is not concrete about whether it happened. This is shown on Page 195, when she writes: "Was it really fun and games? Could he not tell he was hurting me? I don't know. I just don't know." She clearly questions her series of events after her brother comes to apologize, as the contradiction between love and abuse is shown. Earlier that afternoon, he had broken her wrist and sprained her ankle, and now he was apologising and nurturing her wounds. She questions whether the series of events were as tormented as she had seen them, because she felt that if he really wanted to hurt her he would not come back to apologise and take care of her. In the paragraph after, she writes: "I write this until I believe it, which doesn't take long because I want to believe it." In this sentence, she is obviously convincing herself of a distortion of truth about the events of that afternoon in order to deny that what she was enduring was not abuse, but love.

  3. Tara self-blames in order to give herself a sense of false control over the actions of Shawn and her family. She does this as it is easier than confronting the truth of her family, which could separate her from the central point of her life. Her family has been a huge part of her life growing up, as she had a lack of social life due to the fact that she did not attend a school. In many ways, her family was the only thing she had and she knew that if she confronted the real truth of the physical abuse of Shawn, she would be furious and would try to confront her family, which could drive them apart and leave her even more lost and hurt than she already was. In many ways, her family was an anchor in her world, keeping her together for the first 20 years of her life. As she goes to University, she becomes more independent and in ways controlled over her life. When she travels back to Bucks Peak, she demands the same feeling of control although her family does not allow it, mostly through the abuse from Shawn. She cannot control Shawn's actions, but she can control how she believes it. It helps her deal with the overpowering feeling of powerlessness.

  4. the older narrator of Tara has a selective memory of the series of events that leads up to her abuse. This is through years of denial, distortion of the truth, and self-blaming. Since a young age, she has distorted and denied her memories of abuse and neglect. As she continues to do this to cope, she falls into a spiral of denials, distortions, and blame. She does not seem to figure out which memories are real and which are fake, and questions where the events of abuse even happened as the coping mechanism she adapted would warp the actual events into something more endurable. This is seen in page 292: " Your reality is so warped. It's like talking to someone who wasn't even there. I agreed. It was exactly like that." When her mother confirms the cruelty of her brother, it opens up her eyes and makes her realise that regardless of the constant denial and distortion, her truth was the truth.