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Half-caste by John Agard

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Amber Barker

on 1 May 2013

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Transcript of Half-caste by John Agard

Half-caste By John Agard! First for some background info on John Agard!!! . John Agard was born in Guyana in 1949, that means he's about 64!
. His mother is portuguese!
. His father is Caribbean!
. John moved to England in the 1970s where he started educating people about the Caribbean culture!
. John has been writing poetry since the age of 16!
. John often uses his own Caribbean style of speaking in his poems to give full expression to the voice of his homeland! What sort of techniques does Agard use to hook us in?????? It almost sounds like he's challenging the readers to think about they're attitude towards people of a different culture!
John speaks to us using humor and direct speech and commands, for example, "Explain yuself" and "understand".
He also mixes languages from Caribbean, "ah lookin at yu wid de keen half of mih eye" and then the English, "Consequently when I dream I dream half-a-dream." Your task!!!
Your task is to....
1) Draw a picture of what you think John Agard looks like, can you tell what he looks like just by listening to his poem?
2) Write round your picture in decorative writing the key facts about John you've learnt from this presentation!
3) Now to add the COLOUR!!!!!!

I hope you enjoy my pesentation! Presentation by Amber Barker! Whats the point Agard's trying to get across to us??? RIGHT LISTEN UP BECAUSE THIS IS IMPORTANT!!!
John mentions, "yu mean when Picasso mix red and green is a half-caste canvas?" he's arguing that mixing colours is a good thing and that there is nothing wrong with mixed race people.
He says later, " wha yu mean when yu say half-caste yu mean Tchaikovsky sit down at dah piano an mix a black key wid a white key is a half-caste symphony." John talks of black and white piano keys referring them as people.
A composer would use both the black and the white key on the piano and no one would think anything of it, so what Agard is saying is that, the majority of people of mixed race have one black and one white parent, should be accepted and respected as Tchaikovsky's music is. In conclusion! I, personally, really like this poem! I think it's really inspirational and quite moving! And I bet that quite a lot of people that are of mixed race feel a similar way to John and that some people think that they are only half a person.
Now you have one last task to do!
On your piece of paper you must come up with a conclusion explaining how you feel about the poem and maybe you could include how you feel about how people who come from abroad are treated, how they feel and how you would feel in the situation of standing in the middle of someone who is being attacked, both verbally and physically by someone you don't know!
It doesn't have to be an essay! Get your point across but it can be quite short! This is John Agard!!! This is the poem Half-caste!
Hope you enjoy!

Excuse me
standing on one leg
I'm half-caste

Explain yuself
wha yu mean
when yu say half-caste
yu mean when picasso
mix red an green
is a half-caste canvas/
explain yuself
wha u mean
when yu say half-caste
yu mean when light an shadow
mix in de sky
is a half-caste weather/
well in dat case
england weather
nearly always half-caste
in fact some o dem cloud
half-caste till dem overcast
so spiteful dem dont want de sun pass
ah rass/
explain yuself
wha yu mean
when yu say half-caste
yu mean tchaikovsky
sit down at dah piano
an mix a black key
wid a white key
is a half-caste symphony/ Explain yuself
wha yu mean
Ah listening to yu wid de keen
half of mih ear
Ah looking at u wid de keen
half of mih eye
and when I'm introduced to yu
I'm sure you'll understand
why I offer yu half-a-hand
an when I sleep at night
I close half-a-eye
consequently when I dream
I dream half-a-dream
an when moon begin to glow
I half-caste human being
cast half-a-shadow
but yu come back tomorrow
wid de whole of yu eye
an de whole of yu ear
and de whole of yu mind

an I will tell yu
de other half
of my story

John Agard Hope you enjoy!!! Thank you for watching and listening to my presentation!!!!!
Hope you enjoyed it!!!
:-D Any questions???
Full transcript