From Yr 11 English Literature Syllabus


As indicated in the objectives, the year's reading should be devoted to exploring the various value systems of particular texts and the ways in which the meanings of the texts arise out of the relationships between and among reader, writer, text and context.


Textual analysis is a primary critical skill and is the basic methodology of Year 11 English Literature studies. It is central to the teaching of the educational objectives of the subject. In the teaching and learning program textual analysis involves a focus on the complex set of relationships and the active process of how literary meaning is made through the following:


          the language experiences which the reader brings to the text, including:

             the student's knowledge of the codes and conventions of the literary text

             the student's ability to distinguish between the literal and the metaphoric

             the words and structures in the text which reflect a cultural context

          the historical and cultural context within which the literary text was produced, including:

             knowledge about the author and his/her location in his/her culture

             the historical circumstances that had a bearing on the production of the text

             the words and structures in the text which reflect a cultural context

          the concept of cultural myths. the context in which the text is received, including:

             the context of the reader's own culture

             the context of the reader's moral, political and social values

             the place of the reader in his/her culture

             the context of classroom study.

          the codes and conventions of specific literary texts, including:

             levels of meaning

             figurative language

             conventions of genre.


Through the study of this subject students should be able to demonstrate the following understandings:

          the moral, social and political meanings of literature

          the concept of convention, and the understanding of the particular conventions of figurative language (e.g. image and metaphor), levels of meaning analysis (e.g. denotation and connotation), structure and reader positioning (e.g. tone, irony and point of view)

          the primary critical skills of textual analysis

          the concept of genre:

             generic conventions, characteristics and expectations

             generic forms, structures and sub-genres

             plot and character in relation to genre

             relationship between conventions and form, and cultural influences

          text and context:

             cultural and historical significance of, and in, texts

             cultural myths such as stereotypes, gender images, power groups

             the meaning of different signs in texts in different times.