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Text One

The passage below is an excerpt taken from the opening of the novel, The Other Hand,
published in 2008. The author, Chris Cleave, is also a columnist for a London newspaper.

Most days I wish I was a British pound coin instead of an African girl. Everyone would be
pleased to see me coming. Maybe I would visit with you for the weekend and then
suddenly, because I am fickle like that, I would visit with the man from the corner shop
instead but you would not be sad because you would be eating a cinnamon bun, or
drinking Coca Cola from the can, and you would never think of me again. We would be
happy, like lovers who met on holiday and forgot each others names.

A pound coin can go wherever it thinks it will be safest. It can cross deserts and oceans and
leave the sound of gunfire and the bitter smell of burning thatch behind. When it feels
warm and secure it will turn around and smile at you, the way my big sister Niruka used to
smile at the men in our village in the short summer after she was a girl but before she was
really a woman, and certainly before the evening my mother took her to a quiet place for a
serious talk.

Of course a pound coin can be serious too. It can disguise itself as power, or property, and
there is nothing more serious than when you are a girl and you has neither. You must try to
catch the pound, and trap it in your pocket, so that it cant reach a safe country unless it
takes you with it.

How I would love to be a British pound. A pound is free to travel to safety, and we are free
to watch it go. This is the human triumph. This is called, globalization. A girl like me gets
stopped at immigration, but a pound can leap turnstiles, and dodge the tackles of those big
men with their uniform caps, and jump straight into a waiting airport taxi. Where to sir?
Western civilization, my good man, and make it snappy.

What are the main ideas of the text?

Identify the elements of construction and the use of language devices that shape
your response.

Text Two is an excerpt from the science fiction short story, The Pedestrian by Ray
Bradbury.
To enter out into that silence that was the city at eight oclock of a misty evening in
November, to put your feet upon that buckling concrete walk, to step over the grassy seams
and make your way, hands in pockets, through the silences, that was what Mr. Leonard
Mead most dearly loved to do. He would stand upon the corner of an intersection and peer
down long moonlit avenues of sidewalk in four directions, deciding which way to go, but it
really made no difference; he was alone in this world of A.D.2053, or as good as alone, and
with a final decision made, a path selected, he would stride off, sending patterns of frosty
air before him like the smoke of a cigar.

Sometimes he would walk for hours and miles and return only at midnight to his house. And
on his way he would see the cottages and homes with their dark windows, and it was not
unequal to walking through a graveyard where only the faintest glimmers of firefly light
appeared in flickers behind the windows. Sudden gray phantoms seemed to manifest upon
inner room walls where a curtain was still undrawn against the night, or there were
whisperings and murmurs where a window in a tomb-like building was still open.

Mr. Leonard Mead would pause, cock his head, listen, look, and march on, his feet making
noise on the lumpy walk, For long ago he had wisely changed to sneakers when strolling at
night, because the dogs in intermittent squads would parallel his journey with barkings if he
wore hard heels, and lights might click on and faces appear and an entire street be startled
by the passing of a lone figure, himself, in the early November evening.

How does the writer use language features and point of view to shape your
response?

How effective is the construction of setting in shaping your response to the


futuristic world?

Analyse and attempt to answer the questions listed above. It gives you practice in looking
for meaning within different text types.