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The road to Regeneration.
Transcript of The road to Regeneration.
6 key areas of study
Language and structure used
The text is anchored in everyday language and conversation.
Multiple narrators with a changing narrative point of view.
Rivers and Sassoon exchanges are less rapid, and more conversational, and Rivers asks most of the questions.
Pat Barker prefers to tell her story through dialogue making it more realistic.
Italics used frequently to show where characters are emphasizing certain things.
-Prior continues to have nightmares and screams in his sleep. This can be linked to chapter 7 where we first informed of how he acts in his sleep.
of the silver grey light
Metaphoric - this could relate
to flooding at during the Battle
The white could symbolise the
purity Craiglockhart is trying to
achieve with the patients. It
also contrasts with the trench
'Rivers, who managed to smile
without moving a muscle of his
This creates an almost inhuman
presentation of Rivers, perhaps
Barker wanted to signify the difference
between Rivers and his patients, possibly on an
Introduction to Regeneration
'At first he tried to
himself it was indigestion'
From this I can gather soldiers were indoctrinated into dismissing their problems, no matter how serious.
'Psychosomatic symptoms are
This is a key quote which is also a theme throughout the novel. It is the emphasis of how important it was to treat shell-shock medically, as different classes of society disregarded it as an illness. For example the working class, represented by Mr Prior.
'Dignified.' This is a one word sentence which is important. It allows the reader to explore where dignity lies within the novel, or on a broader scale, in addition it almost stabilizes and confirms Sassoon's 'dignity'.
'He stared at the window's pale square of light.'
This further reveals the drastic contrast between the trenches and the hospital. The patients are entranced by the paleness of their surroundings now, rather than blood, and mud.
Burns is brought before the medical board.
Prior has another asthma attack, but he wants to return to war as it is the only place he feels he fits in.
Anderson breaks down at his roommates shaving wound and crawls into a fetal position, Rivers urges Anderson to reconsider return into a profession involving medicine.
Prior's roommate, Willard hates sharing a room with Prior because of his screaming and he thinks Prior is gay.
Anderson's roommate, Featherstone, hates Anderson too.
Broadbent's mother turns up, even though he said she was dying.
Sassoon and Owen work on poetry throughout the night, Sassoon has a bad dream about his dead friend Omre, but by the time he goes to tell Rivers in the morning, Rivers has already got the train as he goes on leave. Sassoon feels like this is a second abandonment, like what happened with his father. We get the realisation that Rviers was like a father to Sassoon.
Pat Barker interview
The themes of trauma, survival and community permeate all your novels, including those with contemporary settings. Are they always the starting point for you?
I always start with characters rather than with themes which emerge from the telling of the story, but I agree that surviving trauma is a frequent situation for my characters. At least they do survive and often with a sense of humour and a zest for life intact.
How do you combine your historical and fictional material? How nerve-wracking is it putting words into the mouths of well-known figures for which there might not be any specific source material?
Fictional characters are constructed rather differently in a work where real characters play a leading role. In Regeneration Billy Prior is designed to challenge Rivers not merely by what he says but by the sort of person he is.
- Rivers suggests that Anderson should go for a different profession than medicine but in chapter 4 there is reference that he must practice medicine to support his family.
-Rivers is seriously stressed with patients and workload. Throughout the Novel you can see Rivers being put in the patients viewpoint and becoming like them. In chapter 13 he is given 3 weeks leave and Sassoon misses him as he sees him as a father like figure.
The role of women 'The Home Front'
VAD- Voluntary Aid Detachment. The VAD was a organisation to provide nursing care in Britain. It was founded in 1909.Two-thirds were women and girls.
Which then led to women having more established rights as men.
Physical/mental/spiritual consequences of war- Anderson see's a small amount of blood and is reduced to being on the floor scared. Even though he was a doctor on the front line. Shows the mental impact of war on the patients.
Physical/mental/spiritual consequences of war- Many men suffered from nightmares as in the novel Prior does, and Willard asks to move rooms away from him.