Due: 11/05 (Set: 08/05)
Title: Mockingjay – P1Q3
Time allocation: 20-25 minutes
Task: Read the extract and answer Paper 1 Questions 3 (8 marks)
Paper 1 Question 3
You now need to think about the whole of the Source.
This text is the opening of a novel.
How is the text structured to interest you as a reader?
You could write about:
- what the writer focuses your attention on at the beginning
- how and why the writer changes this focus as the Source develops
- any other structural features that interest you.
Extract – Mockingjay – Susanne Collins
My name is Katniss Everdeen. I am seventeen years old. My home is District 12. I was in the Hunger Games. I escaped. The Capitol hates me. Peeta was taken prisoner. He is thought to be dead. Most likely he is dead. It is probably best if he is dead….
“Katniss. Should I come down?” My best friend Gale’s voice reaches me through the headset the rebels insisted I wear. He’s up in a hovercraft, watching me carefully, and ready to swoop in if anything goes amiss. I realize I’m crouched down now, elbows on my thighs, my head braced between my hands. I must look on the verge of some kind of breakdown. This won’t do. Not when they’re finally weaning me off the medication.
I straighten up and wave his offer away. “No. I’m fine.” To reinforce this, I begin to move away from my old house and in toward the town. Gale asked to be dropped off in 12 with me, but he didn’t force the issue when I refused his company. He understands I don’t want anyone with me today. Not even him. Some walks you have to take alone.
The summer’s been scorching hot and dry as a bone. There’s been next to no rain to disturb the piles of ash left by the attack. They shift here and there, in reaction to my footsteps. No breeze to scatter them. I keep my eyes on what I remember as the road, because when I first landed in the Meadow, I wasn’t careful and I walked right into a rock. Only it wasn’t a rock–it was someone’s skull. It rolled over and over and landed face up, and for a long time I couldn’t stop looking at the teeth, wondering whose they were, thinking of how mine would probably look the same way under similar circumstances.
I stick to the road out of habit, but it’s a bad choice, because it’s full of the remains of those who tried to flee. Some were incinerated entirely. But others, probably overcome with smoke, escaped the worst of the flames and now lie reeking in various states of decomposition, carrion for scavengers, blanketed by flies. I killed you, I think as I pass a pile. And you. And you.
Because I did. It was my arrow, aimed at the chink in the force field surrounding the arena, that brought on this firestorm of retribution. That sent the whole country of Panem into chaos.
In my head I hear President Snow’s words, spoken the morning I was to begin the Victory Tour. “Katniss Everdeen, the girl who was on fire, you have provided a spark that, left unattended, may grow to an inferno that destroys Panem.” It turns out he wasn’t exaggerating or simply trying to scare me. He was, perhaps, genuinely attempting to enlist my help. But I had already set something in motion that I had no ability to control.
Burning. Still burning, I think numbly. The fires at the coal mines belch black smoke in the distance. There’s no one left to care, though. More than ninety percent of the district’s population is dead. The remaining eight hundred or so are refugees in District 13–which, as far as I’m concerned, is the same thing as being homeless forever.
Points of Answer
Focus: Perspective and subject of paragraph
Tone: Positive? Negative? Tense? Humorous? Happy? Creepy? Mysterious?
Questions: What questions does the reader have after reading this section?
Answers: has the reader answered any questions from the previous section(s)?
Effect: How has this section made the reader feel?
Katniss is talking to the reader; she has escaped ‘HG’ and thinks Peeta is dead: “Peeta was taken prisoner. He is thought to be dead.”
Tone? Negative – Katniss wants to be alone and thinks Peeta is dead
Questions? Why does Katniss want to be alone today especially?
Answers? We aren’t yet sure
Effect: Reader feels tense and curious
Katniss reflects on District 13 (her neighbouring district)’s poverty: “The remaining eight hundred or so are refugees in District 13–which, as far as I’m concerned, is the same thing as being homeless forever.”
Tone? Creepy tone – as there are dead bodies littering the pathway
Questions? Why are people dead?
Answers? We think it may have something to do with Katniss
Effect: We are worried, tense, frightened
Katniss walks down a road covered in dead bodies: “I stick to the road out of habit, but it’s a bad choice, because it’s full of the remains of those who tried to flee.”
Tone? Depressing / sad – because Katniss feels responsible for many deaths
Questions? Why did Katniss have to ‘set off a spark’ that lead to revolution?
Answers? We are not sure at this point
Effect: The reader is left feeling on edge – the future seems bleak for Katniss and her society