GCSE 9-1 English Language and Literature here

KS3 & KS4 Catch Up

Blog Archive

Student Room

Useful Materials

A Level English Language Guide to Social Varieties

Sarah Battams | Monday November 11, 2019

Categories: Archived Resources, KS5 Archive, AQA A Level, AQA A Level Pre-2015 Resources, AQA A Level English Language B, ENGB1, Hot Entries, Writing, Non-Fiction Analysis, Media Analysis

click on image to enlarge

Social Varieties: Language & Power and Language & Gender

Power and Gender in The Office

The purpose of this activity is to consolidate the work students would have done on power and gender in preparation for ENGB1 (AQA B AS English Language). Students will need to have access to the script from episode one of series one of The Office (pp.27-32 of The Office: The Scripts) and it will also be advantageous if they watch the scenes on DVD. The students are asked to consider how language asserts power and represents gender in the extract. The following analysis is intended as teachers’ notes.

Background

The Office is a British sitcom, written and directed by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, which first aired on BBC2 in 2001.  It takes the form of a fictional documentary, or a ‘mockumentary’, which follows the working lives of fictional employees of the Slough branch of ‘Wernham Hogg’, a paper distribution company, and their boss, regional manager David Brent, played by Gervais. A mockumentary shares many of characteristics of ‘reality’ TV shows: the camera is often acknowledged as it follows the characters around, and there are frequent asides – or ‘talking heads’ – when characters speak directly to the camera.  It might be seen to parody the many reality television programmes that feature on TV, especially those that are set in workplaces.

The sitcom, or situation comedy, has been a popular feature of our television schedules for many years.  They are ‘a series of weekly shows based around an initial idea of a situation and characters with potential for humour’ (Ross, 1998: 91), often focusing on families or close relationships. Where The Office is different is that it focuses on the relationships people have with their colleagues while at work. As Ross (1998: 91) states, ‘The type of situation perceived as funny will reflect preoccupations of that culture’ and the office as a work place is common and...


Please subscribe or log in to access the rest of this resource (including associated media).

This website offers a wealth of enriched content to help you help your students with GCSE English Language and Literature. Please subscribe or log in to access this content.

The content of this site has been produced by teachers and examiners. Edusites have similar support sites for Film and Media called Edusites Film and Edusites Media.

If you would like more information about Edusites English, get in touch using the contact details below.

Kind regards, Richard Gent
Edusites Ltd

[email] admin@edusites.co.uk
[telephone] 01604 847689
[fax] 01604 843220