Carol Ann Duffy - Context

  • Created by: wilks98
  • Created on: 20-03-17 14:15

When facing a poetry question, that of which refers to two whole anthologies, the best way to begin your analysis of whatever poem is mentioned in the question is to think about the context of that particular poem as well as others which share similar contexts. For example, if the question were 'Explore how the theme of nostalgia is shown in 'Captain of the 1964 Top Form of the Team' and one other poem of your choice' you would recognize that the context of 'Captain' is that the narrator is reflecting on their youth so you would choose 'Nostalgia' as it's narrator is also someone who is reflecting on their time in the war therefore there will be similar language techniques to analyse.

Captain of the 1964 Top of the Form Team

  • Dramatic monologue
  • Character - a man who has never got over the disappointment of growing up
  • Set in the 60s - references to the Beatles and Top Ten
  • Past tense used, collection of memories


  • Character - soldier feeling nostalgic about home/feeling homesick
  • Continuing contrast between war and home to evoke sympathy
  • Form - 3 stanzas, 3rd stanza has an extra line which suggests the progession of nostalgia
  • Past tense used

Before You Were Mine

  • Character - daughter reflecting on the life of her moether, how her mother was before she got pregnant with the narrator
  • Maybe a look at her life after her death?
  • Form - 4 stanzas, all in free verse which could reflect how the narrator's mother was


  • Character - narrator is talking about a young child who is playing in the beach, also about her life, how she grows up, what advice you would give a little…




this source can be helpful



This source is specific to nostalgia so may not be helpful for all your context need. Thank you for the recourse however