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Into the World: Educating Rita
Transcript of Into the World: Educating Rita
design by Dóri Sirály for Prezi
Introduction on Educating Rita
It is interesting to study briefly the texts mentioned within the play and at what stage of the play they are mentioned. Russell has carefully chosen texts that mirror the themes and the position of the relationships at various times in the play
•Rubyfruit Jungle: Rita Mae Brown
•Howards End: E M Forster
•Sons & Lovers: D H Lawrence
•A Stone for Danny Fisher: Harold Robbins
•Of Human Bondage: Somerset Maugham
•Macbeth: William Shakespeare
•Peer Gynt: Henrik Ibsen
•Cherry Orchard: Anton Chekhov
•Songs of Innocence & Experience: William Blake
•Frankenstein: Mary Shelley
•Is the basis of drama between characters inner conflict
•Conflict between Rita and Frank the fluctuation in powerful forces that drive the decisions that they characters make
•Conflict between Rita and her family Husbands negative attitude to education, he has expectations for is wife – to have children. Rita’s mother seems to be supportive “Because-because we could sing better songs than those.”
•Inner conflict - There is dramatic interest or tension created because of Rita’s emotional responses. She has to question if her want of an education can overcome her class expectation and her family. “I’m a freak...I’m a half-caste” – the metaphor for freak and half-caste highlights the inner conflict Rita experiences, this changes over time during her transition.
•“I dunno. I might go to France. I might go to me mother’s. I might even have a baby. I dunno. I’ll make a decision. I’ll chose. I dunno.”
By Christina and Kyra
•Educated class/ Working Class
•Disillusioned/ Cynical/ Enthusiastic
•Elite “Howards End” E.M. Forster/ Mass culture “Ruby Fruit Jungle” Rita Mae Brown
Willy Russell’s play Educating Rita explores the growth and change in perspective individuals experience as a result of transitioning into a different society. The protagonist undergoes changes in her attitudes towards society. Through transitioning, she gains courage to challenge social norms and standards to become individuals, make decisions, and realise their self-worth. Additionally, moving from one world to another affects the individuals’ relationships with others, both positively and negatively.
Connection to 'Into the World'
•Rita moves from an ‘uneducated’ working class life to a tertiary educated life.
•It is this transition with its positives and negatives that is to be focused upon.
About Education Rita in 'Into the World'
•Educating Rita 1991 Director by Willy Russell
•EDUCATION = CHOICE
•Explores of a variety of texts that deal with aspects of growing up and transitioning into new phases of an individual’s life. - Growth and change occurs
Early 50’s. Used to write poetry about his wife (no longer together) and him feeling in love.
He is a lecturer at the university
Total opposite to Rita, witty, well spoken
Drinks a lot; alcoholic
Changes in Frank
Life now has a meaning
Moves into the world
oAttractive woman who breezes into an open university as a “breath of fresh air”
oComes from Liverpool, occupation hair dresser, is 26 years old
oShe is keen, enthusiastic and excited about starting uni although still feels are inferior to the other students at the university
oLacks confidence to stand up to people and this is shown when she backs out from going to the dinner party at frank’s house because “she has nothing to wear” and then decides to go to the pub.
oAs the play continues the relationship between Frank and Rita helps her to “find herself” and Rita helps Frank with his life, and negatively, by being different and changing.
oAs Rita changes from her ‘normal’ class she faces many challenges and obstacles. This is because nobody likes to break away.
Change in Rita
- New friends
- Now has choice
- Come a better person
- Has an education
- Loses her husband
- Leaves behind her previous life
Frank’s witty remarks
Rita’s slag, her personality, her ignorance
Contrast in character’s humour
Comic relief to serious themes
oLoss of husband
oRejection of class
Positives of Transition
Discovery & Enlightenment:
Rita discovers a new world far removed from her ‘restrictive’ world as a wife and hairdresser.
Freedom & Choice:
Rita desires to be able to choose her future not have it forced upon her through her inability to have choice. To her this is the basis of her move to escape her entrapment.
Rita hopes that her new life will present opportunities that her existing life has failed to deliver – education, travel, culture
Rita meets new and interesting people. People she aspires to become - Frank, Tiger (students), Trish
Negatives of Transition
Disconnection with the past:
Rita sacrifices the relationship with her family. Her marriage breaks down and she is left to pursue her transition alone.
Rita must overcome set backs, her own short comings and ability to make it into her new world. Rita’s character, Frank , Denny and Trish are examples of the casualties along the way.
The unknown (Grass is always Greener on the other side):
Rita desire to become a different person is at times not well thought out. Does she gain more than she risks during this transition?
There is a great gap between Rita’s ‘working class’ vocabulary and Frank’s ‘educated class’ vocabulary. This is seen both in the spoken and written word. It is especially highlighted when Rita discusses the place or swearing and vulgarity within the classes.
Language is used to show how different the two worlds are, how far Rita must go in her transition to arrive in her new world.
Language may also give insight into the positive and negatives of this transition. Rita returns believing she is a different/better person because she can ‘talk posh’ like Trish.
Symbolic of the distance between the two worlds and how difficult it may be for Rita to move into a new world.
The ease at which Rita finally moves through Frank’s door allows the audience to measure Rita transition. Finally she stops coming at all.
Like the door its characteristics give insight into Rita’s transition. Initially it too is closed and little gets in or out. Finally the window is open it accepts the outside world into the office and allows them to journey out into the world.
The Bookcase (and the bottles):
Perhaps the most important symbol. It hides the truth of Rita’s transition. Is the world she so desires to go to so perfect?
Educating Rita has two acts.
There is a shift between the happenings of act 1 and those of act 2. Rita has changed so much. She has moved into her new world and we measure how successful and fruitful the transition has been?
Educating Rita has only two characters in one room.
The changes in setting within the room are quite evident and purposeful.
The changes in the characters are equally as important and observable.