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Educating Rita

By chanchan24 Aug 04, 2010 1168 Words
Into The World Essay
Educating Rita by Willy Russel is a play that is centrally based upon the main character, Rita, moving from one world to another, hence ‘Into the World’. Through exploring other related texts, various ideas and themes become present. The novel ‘The Butcher: Anatomy of a Mafia Psychopath’ by Philip Carlo, the movie ‘Bend it like Beckham’ and the song ‘Move on Up’ by Curtis Mayfield explore the growth and experiences of each protagonist in their transition from one world to another. Not only can a transition be positive but it can also be rather negative, by means of how the situation is looked at. In a lot of ‘Into the World’ transitions, stereotypes, fear and expectations must be escaped in order to reach goals. In attempt to convey the meaning within these texts, techniques are used to shape their meaning. Philip Carlo is a New York Times bestselling author who explores the life of sadistic murders in which chose to enter the world of mafiadom, one of which is Tommy Pitera also known as ‘The Butcher’. Although the book is about a sadistic murder, the author uses chronological order of Tommy’s life to enable the reader to understand why Pitera, ‘The Butcher’ chose the pathway that he did. Chapter three is a main focus within the book to show this pathway choice. Tommy as a young man grew up in Gravesend, Brooklyn of America an area “You could liken to concrete jungles filled with predatory creatures”. This quote taken from chapter three of the novel, gives the reader imagery that Pitera’s neighbourhood is extremely rough and in fact is one which consists of many mafia associates. “On a daily basis, often several times a day, neighbourhood bullies picked on Tommy.... Pitera had no peace, had no solace, had no way to strike back, had no friends”, this quote taken from chapter three of the novel gives the reader a mental image of how much Tommy actually was tormented and initially was the reason for his pathway into the world of mafiadom. Tommy was extremely unhappy in this world as he didn’t fit in and had no authority, no power, this relates to ‘Educating Rita’ as Rita was also unhappy in her world of the working, uneducated class and she wanted to gain some authority and a position in society, as did Tommy. As we know, Rita’s path was in the most form, positive, but on the other hand, Tommy’s was, extremely negative and in the long run, would suffer great consequences for his actions. To make the transition into the mafiadom Tommy knew that he had to gain some form respect, a way to strike back, “Tommy became interested in martial arts. He viewed it as a way for him to be left alone and, if need be, strike back with great force” This quote holds great significance as martial arts is the direct way that got Tommy Pitera into mafiadom, he became an immaculate fighter and everybody feared him, he began killing and dismembering anybody who got in his way, hence the nickname ‘The Butcher’. The Butcher is a prime example of a negative idea of “Into the World” as becoming a infamous sadistic murder is hardly a positive transition made.

On a positive note, the song “Move on Up” by Curtis Mayfield is related to ‘Into the World’ as it represents the fight to make a transition into another world. The tone of the whole song is very cheery and very catchy, it can be used in effect to brighten listeners moods up and make them more motivated to make their transition. “Move on up, towards your destination, You may find, from time to time, Complications” This quote taken from the first verse of the song shows us that in order to reach a destination, complications will be in place to try and prevent the transition. This relates to Rita as she faces many complications in her transition into the educated world from the uneducated world, for example, she lacks confidence and this complicates her transition as it prevents her from involving herself in educated activities. “Remember your dreams, are your only schemes, So keep on pushin, Take nothing less -, not even second best, And do not obey -, you must have your say, You can past the test” This quote taken from the third verse of the song relates to ‘Into the World’ and ‘Educating Rita’ as it shows us that dreams can be used as a great motivator to help the protagonist make their transition as they shouldn’t take anything less than their dream, second best to their dream and reach their final destination. In order to achieve this goal and make their growth into another world they must have their say and past the test of their new world, Rita passing her exams. The repetition of “move on up” throughout the song reinforces the idea of the protagonist moving up in the world and reaching their highest goals.

Similar ideas are conveyed in the movie “Bend it like Beckham” as to that of the play “Educating Rita”. The two texts relate very closely in comparison to the previous two related texts that have been explored. Both Rita and Jess (main character from Bend it like Beckham) struggle to try and break out of the stereotypes they are moulded too, Rita as a working class woman, as a wife and Jess as a young Indian woman (though as you see in the movie there's expectations from her family to be learn to cook Indian cuisine and marry an Indian man). Jess had tried to meet the expectations of her family but inevitably wasn’t the right path for her, she aswell as Rita, decides to make change in her life. Jess becomes determined to continue with her education of football as relates to Rita’s determination to continue with her education of English literature. Within both texts we see the naivety of the protagonists, for example, the coach asks jess "where do you play?" and jess replies "in the park", and for educating Rita when frank and Rita first meet and frank asks "and you are?" Rita:"i'm a what". At the stage of these quotes in the texts, the characters are not aware of the context of their situations with shows their naivety. The ideas in both texts relate very closely as they both involve stereotype moulds, complications whether they are of confidence problems or of family expectations, and initially in the end their dreams are reached and lessons are learnt. Through the understanding of ‘Into the World’ and how its meaning is shaped within texts we are able to create a better understanding of the concepts of growth and transitions for ourselves. By overcoming complications and fears, paths will be set for the protagonist to choose and allow for a positive or negative outcome of their growth to be achieved.

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