Revelation by Liz Lochhead

Claire Getchell
Mind Map by Claire Getchell, updated more than 1 year ago
Claire Getchell
Created by Claire Getchell almost 7 years ago


Higher English Mind Map on Revelation by Liz Lochhead, created by Claire Getchell on 01/04/2014.

Resource summary

Revelation by Liz Lochhead
  1. "I remember once being shown the black bull / when a child at the farm for eggs and milk."
    1. "I remember" suggests past experience is being recalled.
      1. "when a child" suggests it is a childhood experience.
        1. Adult understanding for?
        2. The purpose of her visit are "eggs and milk" which are significant later on in the poem.
          1. Alliteration of "black bull" brings idea of the evil or unknown to the poem.
          2. "They call him Bob- as though perhaps / you could reduce a monster / with the charm of a friendly name"
            1. Bull is given name to remind reader of the youth of the child.
              1. Creates seeming innocence of scene
              2. Sense of threat is introduced through use of 'monster'
                1. Harsh, childish word choice.
              3. "At the threshold of his outhouse, someone / held my hand"
                1. Suggestions of young girls fear.
                  1. "threshold" suggests being on the doorstep of life and moving onto adulthood
                  2. "At first only black / and the hot reek of him. Then he was immense, / ...just a big bulk and a roar to be really scared of,... / He roared his rage. His nostrils gaped like wounds."
                    1. Use of "black" continues idea of evil or unknown.
                      1. Synaesthesia is used as the girls sight and smell are combined to create image of what the girl can see and smell.
                        1. This provides a good build up as the bull is gradually revealed.
                        2. The use of "immense" continues the sense of threat created.
                          1. Alliteration of "big bulk" links back to beginning of the poem, also continues the sense of threat.
                            1. Onomatopoeia is used to describe what the girl is hearing, this is done through harsh word choice of "roared".
                              1. "roared his rage" is an example of alliteration to be associated with the violence of the bull.
                                1. Final two sentences highlight the girl's horror.
                                2. "Oblivious hens picked their way about. / The faint and rather festive tinkling / ...was all they knew / of that Black Mass, straining at his chains"
                                  1. Introduces a calmer tone to the poem.
                                    1. The hens are "oblivious" to the dangerous bull inside the outhouse.
                                      1. Alliteration of soft sounding "f" contrasts with harsh "r".
                                        1. The soft "tinkling" that the hens know of the bull's chain contrasts with the harsh "clanking"
                                        2. "festive" brings a happier tone to the poem, whereas the previous stanza created a sense of danger.
                                          1. "Black Mass" is in capitals to highlight the size of the bull and also suggest worship of the devil.
                                          2. "this antidote and Anti-Christ his anarchy / threatened the eggs,... / and the placidity of the milk."
                                            1. "antidote" suggests a cure, however here it suggests the opposing value or belief.
                                              1. The bull is referred to as "Anti-Christ" which again refers to the devil.
                                                1. The girl now realises her sexual identity.
                                                  1. The bull symbolises the stereotypical male.
                                                    1. Hens symbolise the female. Eggs and milk are also further symbolism of the female.
                                                      1. Men threaten the eggs and milk whilst women protect them. Differences between male and female is highlighted.
                                                        1. Personification is used to describe the milk as placid, it is calm and not easily angered.
                                                        2. "I ran, my pigtails thumping alien on my back in fear"
                                                          1. "I ran" emphasises on the girl's fear.
                                                            1. Personification of her pigtails thumping on her back.
                                                              1. "thumping" suggests her fast heartbeat.
                                                                1. "pigtails" suggest her young age.
                                                              2. "past the big boys in the farm lane / who pulled the wings from butterflies and / blew up frog with straws"
                                                                1. "big boys" links back to the "black bull"
                                                                  1. Extension of the bull's violence
                                                                  2. "big boys" emphasises on girls young age
                                                                  3. "scared of the eggs shattering- / only my small and shaking hand on the jug's rim / in case the milk should spill"
                                                                    1. The role of women is highlighted as there is reference to the homemaking duties expected of women as the young girl has to protect the eggs and milk.
                                                                      1. This extended metaphor shows the girls fear through her "small and shaking hands", women must deal with the violence of men in domestic situations whilst protecting the house and contents.
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