National 5 Close Reading
“She was the kind of girl the others longed to be: an empty headed, bleach blonde, walking skeleton.”
A) In the extract above is the writer being:
“Becoming a walking Barbie takes great skill; about as much as is needed to become the star player of Manchester United. It involves a hard slog every weekday morning as they plaster on their foundation and practice applying their eyelashes –all training for ‘the big game’ on
b) From what we are told in the above lines, justify your choice.
• Answers must shown an understanding of the apparent incompatibility (1) of the writer’s attitude to Barbie looks and his attitude to football training (1).
Five years ago all the major magazines –like
Glamour or Heat- would have slaughtered me for such a comparison. They would have defended the rights of the young and misguided to dress whatever way they wanted. It is only in recent years that a change has occurred, that magazine editors are finally seeing the light…
1. c) Quote an expression that suggests that in the past Glamour did not agree with the writer.
• “…Glamour or Heat would have slaughtered me for such a comparison.”
• “They would have defended the rights of the young and misguided…”
• “It is only in recent years that a change has occurred…” • “in recent years… magazine editors are finally seeing the light”
It’s the damned fake tan and false eyelashes that they really despise. The low cut tops and layer upon layer of foundation. They might condemn women for giving into the latest fashion trends or wearing uncomfortable heels but this is far more acceptable to the feminists.
2. a) Explain clearly how the writer suggests that the feminist group thinks the Barbie look is worse than ordinary fashion.
• Answers must show appreciation of the degree of distaste (1) suggested by ‘damned’ used for Barbie looks and ‘condemned’ used for normal fashion
• Eg. The use of ‘damned’ for Barbie looks suggests that they will suffer eternal punishment (1) whereas ‘condemned’ just suggests they find them guilty of bad fashion choices (1)
Beauty is a hot potato in the magazine world. On one hand, women love to read about the latest trends and see what all the celebrities are wearing. On the other hand, magazines don’t want to be accused of promoting a certain look or of suggesting everyone should follow the size zero trend. 2.b) The writer uses imagery to describe the topic of beauty. Identify and quote a suitable example . Go on to explain clearly why this is an effective way to describe the topic.
“The rights of the Barbie dolls and the fashion conscious have been championed by a variety of well-meaning men.”
2.c) How does the author’s word choice assert the author’s attitude to men?
“The rights of the Barbie dolls and fashion conscious have been championed by a variety of well-meaning men.”
2c ii) Given the issue being discussed, why might the word ‘men’ be unexpected here?
• The topic being discussed affects only women (1) yet ‘men’ are mentioned as the people defending them (1).
Research has shown that women who spend more than half an hour on their appearance are less likely to get jobs at interviews. 3. In your own words, what exactly has been discovered by the research?
Women who spend a long time on their appearance are unsuccessful at finding employment (1).
Must be some attempt to gloss.
But why shouldn’t they be the shade of a tangerine or dress for work like they’re going to a nightclub? It’s their life, isn’t it? If they want to dress like a misguided thirteen year old let loose with a bottle of spray tan, then who are we to judge?
If they want to get up at five am to look good at 8, then what business is it of ours? I know I’d rather have, for