The typo has since been corrected. (…) She escaped from slavery with several close friends and fled to Blue Mountain, where she scouted out strategic locations to build communities for escaped slaves. The term ‘carving’ suggests the strength, determination and permanence of his actions. Could you give examples of ‘lack of punctuation’ from the poem Checking out me history? That’s £5 for as many resources as you can download with no limit! John Agard was born 1949 in British Guyana, now called Guyana, in the Caribbean. But dem never tell me bout Mary Seacole, The history of the Crimean War, a natural topic in an English classroom environment, would be missing some of its significance if Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole were not mentioned — except that Nightingale was British and Seacole was Jamaican, and this makes all the difference. Well, there is basically none. Toussaint de beacon He is determined to learn about and embrace his own history. He may be dismissive of the European history, calling it ‘all dat’ but he is ‘carving out’ his identity through learning about his own history. Seacole performed a similar task, setting up a British-style hotel area near the battlefields so soldiers could recover their health in a comfortable and familiar environment. Mary Seacole’s defiance of the British is referred to as a heroic action: ‘even when de British said no’. This was at poetry live 16/1/19. A yellow sunrise Annotation prompts for John Agard’s ‘Checking Out Me History’. Every single person that visits PoemAnalysis.com has helped contribute, so thank you for your support. The word ‘me’ shows that he is looking into a more personal aspect of history than might be expected in a formal setting. Dem tell me To freedom river. Dem tell me bout Lord Nelson and Waterloo Dem tell me And the speaker in ‘Checking Out Me History’ notes that they never learned about such figures, but were only taught of the glory of England instead. Checking Out Me History. Apply understanding of the poem with questions that target each of the AOs, Or for a quick revision tool have a look at our Checking Out Me History Revision Sheet, Collect useful revision information on all of the Power and Conflict poems with this DIY Knowledge Organiser, Identify key quotations across the Power and Conflict cluster with this matching card activity pack. Hopeful stream You are right. So, when they refer to a “dem,” they are likely referring, as a whole, to the community whose language they speak. I think that is what the author of this piece is trying to infer, albeit in a less concise way than you just did! The lines are longer and more regular in form although the rhymes used are simplistic, implying the lack of importance Agard associates with these things. Florence Nightingale was a highly reputable and devoted nurse during the Crimean War, known for making rounds in the middle of the night (with her lamp) to care for wounded soldiers. Use of metaphor is reserved for the figures from black history rather than those from British culture. These lines repeat the themes from the last few, but in a much more pronounced way. The speaker is not speaking English as an additional language, as suggested above. How much has Poem Analysis donated to charity? Dem tell me bout de man who discover de balloon He points out, for instance, that Toussaint was able to defeat (“lick back”) Napoleon in battle, a strong contradiction to the highly respected image of Napoleon that would have been especially prominent in a colonial schooling environment. Oxford English Dictionary (OED) Links Off. The reference to The Cow Who Jumped Over The Moon is especially noteworthy, being such a trivial and unimportant story that it pales in comparison to the vast majority of history from anywhere. To the dying. Agard was born in Guyana (then British Guiana) in 1949 and spent his childhood in the South American country. Dick Whittington’s Cat is a reference to an English folklore story, suggesting that the narrator has been colonized by English culture. If you want to see what we offer first, sign up for a free Twinkl account here and take a look around at our free resources. In some ways, this is why poetry can be such a subjective art form — without any voice aside from the reader’s own, those readers are free to draw their own inferences and meanings from the text. The second stanza in this section of ‘Checking Out Me History’ highlights much of the perceived character of Nanny the Maroon, using nature-based imagery to bring a positive influence to the picture. No, the writer is speaking creole due too his culture from the Caribbean. ‘Checking Out Me History’ is about how we are educated and how it can be biased. Agard has used elements from his own Caribbean culture throughout the piece. Similar to the earlier verse comparing Nanny of the Maroon’s desire for freedom to the natural world, this verse makes Seacole seem like an angel, and shows favour for her in the same fast-paced, chant-like way as the verses for L’Ouverture. The structure of the poem changes temporarily here, taking on a faster pace, and an almost chant-like quality when the rhyming begins to take hold (“Lick back / Napoleon / Battalion / And first Black / Republic born / Toussaint de thorn” — try reading it out loud). They are chant-like, reflecting the oral nature of much Caribbean cultural material. The theme of memory can also be explored in ‘Poppies’ and the theme of the power of nature can be found in ‘Ozymandias’ and ‘Storm on the Island’. Despite this, in one of the more abstract and poetic aspects of ‘Checking Out Me History’, she is described as “a yellow sunrise / to the dying,” a metaphor that suggests she is daylight to those who are not going to see the light of day again. Subscribe to our mailing list and get new poetry analysis updates straight to your inbox. Bandage up me eye with me own history Blind me to my own identity. The narrator notes in their school that they’ve learned about the man who discovered balloons (who’s name isn’t even mentioned, unlike the historic figures important to the speaker), but not about figures such as Nanny the Maroon. One might suppose this will be a poem about family history or ancestry but it is instead about the whole of Caribbean and African history, long neglected in schools. She was a “hopeful stream” that led to a “river” of freedom, a fiery force with a mountain dream. The annotation prompts are a supportive tool, intended to encourage further poetry analysis and interpretation. No dem never tell me bout dat, The narrator of this poem is introduced through their voice, relayed through words such as “dem” and “wha,” better understood as “them” and “what,” which indicates to the reader immediately that English is not likely the native language of the speaker. He rejects European syntax and English pronunciation throughout the text, choosing to write instead with a Caribbean, Creole dialect. The annotation prompts are a supportive tool, intended to encourage further poetry analysis and interpretation. Repetition, another oral poetry technique is also used. (…) Agard references both the blindness he felt at knowing nothing of his own culture: ‘Bandage up me eye’ and ‘Blind me to me own identity’ and the light and vision he ascribes to learning about people from the Caribbean. She travel far Once British soldiers caught on and discovered the location of many escaped slaves, they brought down the might of their military onto the town.

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