Monday, December 29, 2008

L2 Thème

December test. Some suggested translations

Thème test December 2008. Suggested translations

1 I turned round and saw Christa running to catch me up.
2 She held on to Frémincourt.. He helped her steady herself.
3 I blew my mother a kiss through the wall of my room, and slid down to the ground.
4 he claims to be campaigning for what he calls freedom.
5 There are some things you should never allow yourself to say, no matter how furious you are.
6 Busard’s parents provided him with board and lodging for 500 francs a day.
7 We stood squashed together close to the doors.
8 Doesn’t sound like a respectable couple.
9 We managed like a couple of beavers, did everything ourselves, we did.
10 He hadn’t seen any sign of civilians when he had crossed through the town

L2 phonetics. Corrigé for December test

Phonetics test corrigé December 2008


(voiced) lateral alveolar stop
(mid-) open back lax vowel with slightly rounded lips
unvoiced velar stop


Voiced bilabial stop
Open front lax vowel with spread lips
Unvoiced post-alveolar affricate

Unvoiced alveolar fricative
Mid-close (central-) front lax vowel with spread lips
Velar nasal stop
Mid-close (central-) front lax vowel with spread lips
Velar nasal stop

All students - pronunciation dictionary online

singing - Pronunciation from www.howjsay.com

Not sure how to pronounce a word? On this site you can type in an English word and hear it pronounced.

Monday, December 22, 2008

L3 Option A revision Contestation sociale en Angleterre

Contestation sociale en Angleterre

Bonnes fêtes à tous et à toutes!

Si vous suivez le lien ci-dessus, vous trouverez des MP3 d'une série de mes cours de l'année dernière, qui pourraient vous être utiles. Ces fichiers ne remplacent pas, bien sûr, un travail en bibliothèque.

Keywords: British history, nineteenth century, twentieth century, podcast, university lecture, social movements

Sunday, December 21, 2008

L3 Option A : Correction to homework exercise

There is a typing error in the extract you have been asked to study. The document says

“On January 24th, 1918, debate on the first of the amendments was begun.”

It should of course read

“On January 24th 1913, debate on the first of the amendments…”

Thank you to Lyse for pointing this out.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Option L3 Votes for women, December 1918

Votes for women, December 1918

It is the ninetieth anniversary of the election of the first woman to parliament, this week. The above link to Oxford University Press gives a sort version of some of this history.

L3 Option A The first ever woman MP

This is a radio programme about the first woman to be elected to parliament.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

L1 LANSAD week twelve

Some of these exercises you have done before, but most are new.

Will or going to

You've done this exercise before

This one is new
(mix and match)

Here is another mix and match.

http://www.englishgrammarsecrets.com/goingtoorwill/exercise4.html (I’d love a cup of tea)

Must or have to

First exercise

second exercise

Third exercise

Could and was able to

Modals of deduction

Free practice

Here is a place on the web you can practice your listening skills

Reading for holiday time

The Times is read by people who are not poor! Read their Christmas gift guide and see if you can get ideas for your family and friends.

With the economic crisis, people are trying to save money at Christmas. The supermarkets are trying hard to offer cheaper food this Christmas. This article explains some of the details.

Questions and answers on cooking in England at Christmas!

Good news before the holidays for people interested in the environment

It’s also Hannukah this week. The London fire brigade wanted people to have fun, but to be careful.

L3 Option A Saint Simon et les Saint-simoniens - Culture & Révolution

Saint Simon et les Saint-simoniens - Culture & Révolution

This week we will be looking at the influence of three thinkers - Saint Simon, Robert Owen and Karl Marx. This is a link to an introductory article on Saint Simon.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Dates of tests and exams

On Thursday next, my L2 Phonetics class will have a short test. The final test will be in week thirteen (8 January).

On Friday next, my L2 thème class will have a short test. The final test will be in week thirteen (9 January).

My L1 civilization class will have their final test for the semester on the 19th January at 3pm. In week thirteen (8 January) they will have an ordinary class.

My L3 Civilization option will have their final test on the 20th January at 3 pm. In week thirteen (9 January) they will have an ordinary class.

My L1 Grammar class will have their final test in week thirteen (9 January).

My L1 LANSAD class will have their final test in week thirteen (9 January)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

L1 LANSAD week eleven

Here is a humorous article about France in an English newspaper.

L3 Contestation sociale YouTube - The Suffragettes

YouTube - The Suffragettes

A short, simple, but touching video made by young people about the campaign for votes for women.

L3 Contestation sociale Jill Liddington - review of Rebel Girls by Alison Light from London Review of Books

Jill Liddington - review of Rebel Girls by Alison Light from London Review of Books

This article analyses Jill Liddington's book "Rebel Girls",a book which tries to understand which women became suffragettes and why.

L1 civilisation Humble Petition and Advice - Wikipedia

Humble Petition and Advice - Wikipedia

Here is a short summary of the Humble Petition and Advice.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

L1 civilisation GB Putney Debates - Wikipedia

Putney Debates - Wikipedia

The wikipedia article on the Putney debates is a good introduction to that subject.

L3 option contestation sociale - Rebel girls

Recently historians have tried to understand in detail what made women get involved in the fight for the vote. This lecture given in London in 2007 is by a historian whor wrote a book called "Rebel girls". She recounts the involvement of four very different women in the fight for the right to vote.

L1 more grammar revision

Here are some of the notes on my classes which will help you revise for the test on Friday.

Be + ING part one
Be + ing part two

Have + EN part one
Have + EN part two

Sunday, December 07, 2008

L1 Grammar revision

As you know, we have a test next Friday. The test will deal with everything w ehave covered since the last test - that is to say

1) BE +ING (when to use it and when not to use it)
2) HAVE + EN (when to use it and when not so use it).

You will certainly need to read over the notes you took in class, and read, no doubt more than once, the chapters of your grammar book dealing with these points. You can also revise by listening to these two MP files about HAVE +EN. They are extracts from my classes

First part of explanation on HAVE +EN
Second part of explanation on HAVE + EN

Tuesday, December 02, 2008


You will find here an explanation of "will" and "going to", to revise what we looked at two weeks ago.

Friday, November 28, 2008

L3 Option A : The matchgirls strike of 1888

The Union Makes Us Strong: TUC History Online

Follow this link for the storyof the match girls.

L1 Thème grammaire Past with BE + ING

L1 Thème-Grammaire Past Progressive (Past Continuous)
Past Progressive (Past Continuous)

Follow the link here
for revision of the past with BE + ING. (the name "past progressive" or "past continuous" is just an olde rname for "the past with BE + ING".
Publié par John Mullen à l'adresse 17:22 0 commentaires

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

LANSAD ONE week nine

GRAMMAR - will and Going to

After listening to my explanation, have a go at these exercises.

The first exercise is here

The second exercise is here

The third exercise is here

France in the English press

A story in the English press about the French president’s wife

Thursdays strikes and demonstrations in the English press


and the election of Martine Aubry here

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

L3 option Civilisation - British History: Trade Union Movement

British History: Trade Union Movement

We are going to be looking at the history of trade unions in nineteenth century Britain. This web page gives an indispensable introduction to the subject.

L2 Phonetics

The short dictation test for my L2 phonetics group is this wek - the day after tomorrow.

L1 Thème -grammaire

The next test for thème-grammaire group will be on the 11th of December.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Monday, November 17, 2008

L1 Grammar : BE +ING in the past

Passé progressif / Passé simple-anglais

Here is a simple exercise for revision.

Back to normal

Everything is back to normal on Friday this week.

In my L2 thème class, I will be giving back your tests, and we will be working on the translation about "Le Bresson".
In my L1 Grammar class, I will be giving back your tests, and we will be working more on Be +ING : please prepare.
In my L3 Option A Contestation sociale class, you will be doing a test - a text commentary.
In my LANSAD 1 class I will be giving you back your test, and we will be moving on to the next section in the booklet : please read it.

All students : VIGILANGUES : Les '20 maux' (ou 'vains mots') du Congrès de Reims, ce w-e

VIGILANGUES : Les '20 maux' (ou 'vains mots') du Congrès de Reims, ce w-e

One of my colleagues has put together a list of sentences showing the vocabulary used in the English newspapers to describe this week's Socialist Party conference in France. Click on the link ...

L1 Civilisation YouTube - Cromwell and the Rise of Parliamentary Democracy (clip)

YouTube - Cromwell and the Rise of Parliamentary Democracy (clip)

This very short video gives an interesting introduction to the New Model Army.

Here is a video about statues of Charles and of Cromwell in today's London.

In fact, if you search Youtube, you can find quite a few documentaries on Charles 1st, on Oliver Cromwell and on the English Civil War. These cannot of course replace your history book, butthat can be a useful and interesting way to remember the main points.

Here is an amusing re-enactment by young school pupils!

L1 civilisation GB Digger pamphlet: A New-yeers Gift for the Parliament and Armie by Gerrard Winstanley 1650

Digger pamphlet: A New-yeers Gift for the Parliament and Armie by Gerrard Winstanley 1650

You can see here online one of the hundreds of pamphlets produced during the English Civil War. This one is by the diggers, a radical group of whom the most influential was Winstanley.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

L1 grammar test corrigé part three

Here was the question :
C: Add the most likely tag.
1 Everybody has finished now…….. ?
2 Mike hardly ever goes out these days,,…. ?
3 You loved Spielberg's latest film,
4 They had to buy a new car,….. ?
5 It’s only worth 5 marks, ….. ?
6 We'd've preferred cash,……… ?
7 Your teacher can’t have seen us,…… ?
8 There are two new Japanese restaurants there now,………..?

Here is the answer :

1 Everybody has finished now, haven't they?
2 Mike hardly ever goes out these days,does he?
3 You loved Spielberg's latest film,didn't you?
4 They had to buy a new car, didn't they?
5 It’s only worth 5 marks,isn't it ?
6 We'd've preferred cash,wouldn't we ?
7 Your teacher can’t have seen us, can she ?
8 There are two new Japanese restaurants there now, aren't there ?

Section D has many different possible answers.

L1 Tous étudiants - Cours de soutien

Si vous avez du mal dans certaines matières, vous avez plusieurs choix.

- Fermez les yeux et vous démoraliser après les premiers partiels en janvier
- décidez de passer deux années pour compléter votre première année
- ou accélérer votre apprentissage

Pour les gens dans le troisième cas, nous organisons

- des séances de tutorat, ou des étudiants de troisième année vous donnent des conseils
- des cours de soutien, ouvert à tous les étudiants.

Les cours de soutien pour civilisation britannique, et pour littérature, vont commencer bientôt, les jeudi. Je ferai les cours de soutien pour civilisation britannique. Ils sont ouverts à tous les étudiants de première année, que vous ayez particulièrement du mal dans cette matière, ou si vous voulez gagner quelques points sur votre moyenne en améliorant votre compréhension de la civilisation. Ils auront sans doute lieu le jeudi à 16h30, mais ce sera confirmé dans quelques jours.

L1 Grammar test corrigé part two

Here is part two. The question was

B : Translate into natural English
1 Ils mangeaient tôt et nous aussi.
2 Ton père, il mesure combien?
3 Quand vas-tu voir le film?
4 Tu ne crois pas que ses films étaient meilleurs avant ?
5 Pourquoi n’y a-t-il plus d’eau chaude ?
6 Sa copine ne l'aurait pas dit, mais lui si.
7 Il sait parler russe mais son chef non.
8 Ils mangeaient un hamburger et nous aussi.
9 Qu'est-ce qu'elle est merveilleuse, ma fille!
10 Il y a des centaines de CDs Quelle musique veux-tu écouter ?
11 Tu ne vas pas en acheter six! - Bien sûr que si.
12 Quel paresseux, quand même, ton frère!
13 C'était comment finalement le test de grammaire ?
14 Tu fais du sport tous les combien ?

The answers are (sometimes more than one answer is possible)
1 They ate early and so did we.
2 How tall is your father ?
3 When are you going to see the film ?
4 Don’t you think his films were better before ?
5 Why is there no more hot water ?
6 His friend wouldn’t have said it, but he would.
7 He can speak Russian but his boss can’t.
8 They were eating a hamburger and so were we.
9 How wonderful my daughter is !
10 There are hundreds of CDs. What music do you want to listen to ?
11 You’re not going to buy six of them ! Of course I am.
12 How lazy your brother is !
13 What was the grammar test like, in the end ?
14 How often do you do sport

Saturday, November 15, 2008

L1 Grammar test corrigé part one

Here are the corrections for the first part of your test. Question one was

A Write out sentences in English beginning with the phrase in brackets and incorporating the question. Sometimes there is more than one correct answer possible.

EXEMPLE : Où est la gare (He wanted to know)
REPONSE : He wanted to know where the station is.

1 Quand est-il sorti, ce livre? (I’m not sure)
2 Qu’est-ce que ça veut dire, « okapi » ? (I have no idea)
3 Depuis quand il parle comme ça ? (Please tell me)
4 Combien êtes-vous ? (I don’t remember .)
5 Où se trouve le cinéma? (Nobody seems to know )
6 Pourquoi s’était-il plaint? ( I can’t imagine)

The answers were :
1. I'm not sure when this book came out.
2. I have no idea what "Okapi" means.
3. Please tell me how long he has been talking like that.
4. I don't remember how many of you there are.
5. Nobody seems to know where the cinema is.
6. I can't imagine why he had complained.

Notice that none of these sentences ends in a question mark.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Armistice 90 years on: 'All those pals of mine should be here' - Home News, UK - The Independent

Armistice 90 years on: 'All those pals of mine should be here' - Home News, UK - The Independent

Il reste en Angleterre trois soldats de la première guerre mondiale, qui ont entre 108 et 112 ans. Cet article du Independant raconte.

Friday, November 07, 2008

L2 Phonetics

Just for fun, visit this page and listen to some different accents of English.

This page gives links to dozens of accents!

L1 Grammaire

This link tells a little about present + BE + ING

And here is a fairly basic exercise on the question.

In this exercise you have to choose - is it better to use the simple present or the present with BE + ING

Thursday, November 06, 2008

All students - test dates

My phonetics students will have a short test in phonetic dictation next week. To know how much these tests are worth, consult the blue booklet.
My L1 Civilization students just had their first test, the second in in a few weeks time.
My L2 thème students have a translation test tomorrow Friday for the whole of the class time.
My L1 Thème/grammaire students have a one hour test tomorrow Friday.
My L3 Option A students have their first test - a text commentary - next week (not tomorrow).
My L1 LANSAD students have their first test tomorrow Friday.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

L1 Civilisation GB premier Quiz corrigé

J'ai fait un corrigé détaillé de votre premier quiz. Je l'ai caché entre les pages d'un des livres d'histoire dans la section "Histoire du Royaume Uni" de la bibliothèque universitaire :=)

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

L1 civilisation- English Civil War - Learning Zone (Part 1)

YouTube - English Civil War - Learning Zone (Part 1)This video extract is a simple but useful introduction to the English Civil War.

This video gives another introduction.

L1 Civilization - reconstitution bath mai 2008 civil war

YouTube - reconstitution bath mai 2008 civil war

As you know, now we have finished studying the Reformation, we will be looking at the English Civil War. Read the chapters in your history book(s) about it.

Even today, a few English people like to commemmorate the Civil War by re-enacting it in costume. Follow the link to see what such a reconstrction looks like.

L1 civilisation GB King James Bible Online

King James Bible Online

click above to see the King James Bible online!

Monday, November 03, 2008

L2 Phonetics - Affricate consonant - Wikipedia

Affricate consonant - Wikipedia

This wikipedia article on affricates goes a little further into them than we do in class.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

TV5 - Langue Française - Merci Professeur ! - Gageure

TV5 - Langue Française - Merci Professeur ! - Gageure

Comme vous le savez bien, pour réussir une licence d'anglais, il faut aussi un bon niveau de français écrit. Un peu puriste parfois, ce site web donne néanmoins, dans une série de petits extraits vidéos, des suggestions pour éviter certaines difficultés courantes.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

L1 Grammar revision of information questions

Wh Questions and words for students and teachers of English grammar

click the line above for an explanation.

L3 Option A - more revision

Listen to extracts of some of my classes. Naturally this does not replace reading history books. You should by now know what there is available in the University Library - what chapters of what books can be useful to you.

These are extracts and not whole classes. Most of the files are about twenty minutes long. Click with the right hand button of your mouse and choose "enregistrer la cible sous"

Click here for luddism

Click here for Captain Swing

Click here for the first campaigns for parliamentary reform

Click here for the Great Reform Act

And here is some reading (left click this time)
Click here to read about Chartism

L3 Option A Contestation Sociale Revision

John Mullen- Teaching blog: L3 civilization Suggested text commentary

Click on the link above to revise text commentary.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

LANSAD 1 week five

Next week you will have your first classroom test. It will include exercises on the grammar points we have covered in class, vocabulary points from the articles we have seen in class, and translation sentences from the articles we have seen in class. You need to revise, otherwise you have no chance!

You can find J K Rowling's official site here

Here is an opinion site about Harry Potter : what does the webmaster think ?

Here are some articles on Harry from the BBC.

L3 Option A Slave rebellions

You can hear Jonathan Neale, a friend of mine, give a talk on Slave rebellions, if you click here.

Monday, October 27, 2008

L1 Grammar exclamations

You will find here a useful summary of exclamations

L1 Civilization GB- some links for revision

The history books "Oxford History of England" by Morgan and "Histoire de la Grande Bretagne" by Roland Marx are the first place to go for revision. But these links will helps too.

This article from wikipedia on The Pilgrimage of Grace is useful.

YouTube - Death of Thomas Cranmer

This video on youtube, extract from a documentary, gives a short explanation of Thomas Cranmer's death because he refused to obey Mary on religious questions.

This video extract recounts an earlier episode, when Edward VI became King.

And this video extract from a documentary recounts an even earlier episode - the conflict between King Edward and Mary. Though these videos no doubt exaggerate the importance of personal psychology, they are very interesting.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Here is one more exercise on questions.
You will need to revise all the question forms, because they will be in your test.

And a simple exercise on questions beginning with "How?"

and one more

Go to this page and listen to the world news bulletin.
Listen once.
How many stories are there ?
Listen again.
What countries or famous people are talked about ?
Listen again.
How much do you understand about the stories?

Look around the BBC website and see if you can find articles IN FRENCH on the BBC site about the same subjects.

The BBC Language learning site includes a soap opera about a group of students who live together. Listen to this week's episode - what do you think ?

L1 grammar Echoes

So do I

Click on the heading above for a short, fun exercise on one type of echo.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

L1 Civilisation britannique - first test

Your first classroom test, le premier DST noté, will be on Thursday 30 october. It will last about an hour. Now is a good time to start revising :=)

Monday, October 20, 2008

L3 Option A Slavery resistance and rebellion

About Bristol Radical History Group

A group of historians in Bristol, England, have set up this website which shows you among other things many pictures connected with slavery and with its abolition. There are also some sound files.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

L3 Contestation sociale Whig history - Wikipedia

Whig history - Wikipedia

One of the dangers I will be discussing this semester will be the danger of Whiggish history. BUT what is it? THis article may help to explain a little.

L2 Phonetics : Consonants: Fricatives

Consonants: Fricatives

You will find here a short summary concerning fricatives.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

L3 Option A Contestation sociale

Les trois étudiantes qui se sont inscrites dans l'option en retard devraient me contacter rapidement pour avoir le programme et d'autres renseignements importants...

Friday, October 17, 2008

L3 Option A Contestation sociale

An important but small uprising in Pentrich, Derbyshire, took place a few years later than the luddite risings, but has a lot in common with them. Here is the wikipedia article.

L1 British Civilization - Elizabethan religious settlement

This article might be useful for revision purposes, though some important information is missing.

LANSAD 1 week three

Today’s news

Go to this page and listen to the world news bulletin.

How many news stories are there ?

Listen again and note down what countries are mentioned.

Listen a third time and note down the people mentioned.

How much do you understand about the different stories ?

Vocabulary and spelling

The BBC site also has crosswords : check here

Grammar – question continued
Listen to my explanation first, then try this very short quiz :

Questions with “Who”

The US Election

Who is going to win ?

Here is an article from back in June. Listen to it, and learn the vocabulary.

Here is what The Independent thinks

What kind of people do you think read the Independent ?

This is what The Sun says

What kind of people do you think read The Sun ?

This is what Socialist Worker says

What kind of people do you think read this newspaper ?

Cartoons on Obama

Cartoons on McCain

Are the cartoonists harder on one candidate than on the other ?

American humour at the snoopy website

Monday, October 13, 2008

L1 Civilization : Dissolution of the Monasteries - Wikipedia

Dissolution of the Monasteries - Wikipedia

Sometimes the wikipedia articles are quite useful as background, especially if the subject is not controversial.

L2 Phonetics : English Plosives

English Plosives

This link takes you to a page which compares English plosive consonants with those of another language : Icelandic.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

L1 Thème-grammaire "Indirect questions"

ESL Quiz - Indirect Questions (Vera Mello) I-TESL-J

We saw on Friday that "indirect questions" are not really questions.

Here is an online exercise for you to practice. Try to find the answer, then click on the button to find the correct answer.

This short exercise has only ten questions, about question tags...

L3 Option A - the abolition of slavery

Documents sur l'abolition

This page presents four documents concerning the abolition of the slave trade - including documents in favour of slavery, and against.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Université de Bordeaux à Agen : Scant evidence or scanty evidence ?

"scant evidence" - Recherche Google

If you click on the heading above, you will see what you get on Google if you search for "scant evidence" (you have to put in the inverted commas of course).

If you try with "scanty evidence" this is what you get.

What conclusion can you draw ?

Google of course cannot replace your dictionary, but it can help you , in particular with collocation.

More information on detailed vocabulary in this bulletin.

LANSAD 1 week two


Using English in France

Reading, listening and vocabulary

The first theme we have been looking at has been stereotypes. But there are other questions which affect relations between the English and the French.

Do you think that too much English is used in France ?

- Do you say “email” or “courriel”?
- Do you say “baladeur” or “walkman”?

Can you think of other examples of English words which some French people try to avoid.?

What is your opinion ?

Look at this article about the use of English, listen to it a couple of times. Then look at the “read more” section. This piece is of course, again, from the BBC.

Read another article about the domination of English in today’s world.

Grammar : questions

Short exercise on Yes/NO questions

Short Exercise on Information questions

More difficult exercise on question forms in general

Discussion : Stereotypes

What stereotypes of Englishmen are common ? Is there a little truth in them?

Look at these cartoons about Englishmen. Do you understand them

What stereotypes of Spanish people are common ?


What about Italians?

Listen to the latest news from Radio Netherlands

L1 civilisation britannique

::The Reformation::

This site ( click on the headline) gives you a very simple introduction to what Henry did to the Church in England.

Monday, October 06, 2008

L1 thème grammaire yes No questions

Don't forget to finish the first sheet of exercises I gave you, before our lesson on Friday. Remind the others.

Here is a fairly simple revision of Yes/no questions, in three parts

part one

part two

part three

And here is an online exercise on information questions.

L3 Option A Contestation sociale : BBC - History - The Tools of the Abolitionists

BBC - History - The Tools of the Abolitionists

Click on the title above to see the special BBC history page on the abolition of slavery; a good summary, with pictures.

L3 Option A : Who abolished slavery?

If you follow this link, you will find a general introduction to the abolition movement in Britain, from the Encarta encyclopedia.

In 1807 the slave trade was banned by the British parliament. In 1833 slavery was banned. 2007, then, was the two hundredth anniversary of the banning of the slave trade. This led to a certain number of books, events, museum exhibitions, television programmes etc on a subject which is not well-known and is little studied in school history books. This link will lead you to an MP3 file of a meeting in London on the question "Who really ended slavery". There are two speakers. One of them is Robin Blackburn, author of a number of books, but in particular of the (extremely long) classic history book "The overthrow of colonial slavery". The other speaker is Weyman Bennett, one of the organizers of the present-day campaign in Britain "Love Music Hate Racism." Each speaker speaks for about twenty minutes. Download the file, put it on your MP3 player, and educate yourself while on the bus!

The best way to download the file is to right click and choose "enregistrer le cible sous"...

Be patient - the speakers are easier to understand than the chairman!

L2 Phonetics : alphabet quiz


If you have the impression that you have forgotten part of the phonetic alphabet, or you are not sure which vowel sounds go where, this quiz (click on the title above) will help you. It is an online quiz with 25 questions. If you get one hundred percent right first time, I will be very surprised.

Publier le message

Friday, October 03, 2008

L1 Thème grammaire Group 3

Important! J'aurais dû vous le dire, je voudrais que vous finissiez les exercices sur la première feuille d'exercices avant le prochain cours. Je donnerai le corrigé en cours. Faites passer le message aux autres étudiants dans le groupe

I will put on this blog later in the week some revision exercises for people who are having difficulty with making questions in English. Come back and look regularly.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

LANSAD 1 week one

This page gives you access to all BBC radio programmes : news, music, documentaries. You can listen as often as you like .

On the BBC learning English site, ever week there is a document like this one on smoking in France. You can listen and learn vocabulary. These documents are fairly advanced. There is also a quiz on each story.

Finally on the BBC site you can find grammar and vocabulary sheets like this one on phrasal verbs Again, you need a fair level of English.

Easier grammar quizzes can be found on the web. Try this one on articles.
That should be quite easy. This one is a little more difficult.

This one is difficult too.

Finally, read this explanation of when we use "the" to talk about Geographical places.

Cartoons about the French

Do you understand the cartoons on this page?

These cartoons are about the French. Are they all funny? Are any of them offensive?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

L3 Option A Contestation sociale - International Slavery Museum

Liverpool museums - International Slavery Museum

The Option "Contestation sociale en Grande Bretagne au XIXème siècle" will look at a series of social movements. The first one is the campaign for the abolition of slavery.

The link above will take you to the website of the International Slavery Museum, in Liverpool, one of the very small number of slavery museums in the world. Explore the website, and if you have questions post them here or ask them in class.

The picture shows statues made by the anti-slavery campaign.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Université de Bordeaux à Agen

Cette année je donnerai également des cours de thème en deuxième année à l'Université de Bordeaux à Agen. Au deuxième semestre j'assurerai également des TD sur le thème "The Victorian Spirit". (Histoire du XIXème siècle)

GRAMMAIRE ANGLAISE : QUELQUES POINTS IMPORTANTS / English grammar: A few important points (Didier Madelaine)

GRAMMAIRE ANGLAISE : QUELQUES POINTS IMPORTANTS / English grammar: A few important points (Didier Madelaine)

Cette page vous donne quelques rappels sur des erreurs fréquentes d'étudiants français. A mémoriser!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

La rentrée arrive

Cette année, le premier semestre, je vais enseigner les matières suivantes

En première année de Licence
- Civilisation britannique - de la Réforme à la Révolution glorieuse. Nous traiterons trois grands thèmes - l'établissement du protestantisme en Grande Bretagne, la guerre civile et la République de Cromwell, et la "révolution glorieuse de 1688".

- Thème/Grammaire. On étudiera les structures de la phrase, et quelques éléments importants de HAVE + EN et BE + ING

En deuxième année

- Thème littéraire. Nous traduirons des extraits de romans français du XXème siècle
- Phonétique. Nous apprendrons comment produire, et comment décrire, les sons de l'anglais

En troisième année

- Option A Contestation sociale et politique en Grande Bretagne au XIXème siècle. Nous étudierons les grands mouvements sociaux - contre l'esclavage, pour les droits des femmes, chartisme, syndicalisme.

Friday, August 29, 2008

New Lanark World Heritage Site - Beautiful 18th Century cotton mill village Visitor Centre and Hotel

New Lanark World Heritage Site - Beautiful 18th Century cotton mill village Visitor Centre and Hotel

The 19th Century Socialist Robert Owen established a series of communities based on his progressive ideas. One of the first is today a museum, in Scotland. Follow the link.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A song about a radical group from 1649

You Poor Take Courage

this song has been sung by several different artistes. it deals with an episode from the English Civil war, when some early utopian socialists decided to set up a sort of commune on land, refusing to recognize the aristocratic owner's right to it.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

REVISION English language games

English language games

Un très grand nombre de jeux pour réviser des éléments de grammaire anglais tout en s'amusant. Site établi par Michael Riccioli

Friday, July 11, 2008

YouTube - Song of the Olive Tree - Leon Rosselson

YouTube - Song of the Olive Tree - Leon Rosselson

Leon Rosselson, one of the more well known of English folk singers of the seventies, sings here a song about Palestine.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Pronunciation - Dr Seuss - Fox In Socks (Animated Book)

YouTube - Dr Seuss - Fox In Socks (Animated Book)

Watch this video - listen and repeat to improve your pronunciation!

Sunday, June 08, 2008

L3 civi Chartism drama

Phoenix Radio | Phoenix Podcasts

On this page you will find a play with songs recounting the history of chartism in Halifax, a mill town in the North of England.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

contrôle final

L3 Civi contrôle final.
Look in the blue book if you need to know what's worth what

Luca B 10,75
Sylvie B 10
Adeline C 10
Jessica B 10,5
Fleur O 14
Lauriane F 7
Ingrid K 10,25
Arysone L 5,5
Charlotte M 4,5
Miala R 12,5
Anton T 9,5
Anitha V 7,5
Kelly V 7,25

L3 civilisation Research Paper/ DPA

Next Tuesday at 11h room 261 for anyone who wants to look over papers and talk methodology.

Research paper marks : here they are

Fleur O 16
Anitha V 10
Adeline C 8
Ingrid K 17
Jessica B 15,5
Anton T 13,5
Sylvie B 11,5
Luca B 9
Miali R 8
Lauriane F 7

Monday, June 02, 2008

Consultation de copies pour tous mes étudiants

le mardi 10 juin de 14h à 16h, dans mon bureau 208, ou dans une salle de cours dans le même couloir, vous pourrez consulter vos copies.


Je ferai un cours DPA L3 Civi GB le mardi 10 juin à 11h.
Vous pourrez consulter vos copies, on fera un corrigé, et on parlera méthodologie.
La réservation de salles est fermée aujourd'hui; je mettrai la salle sur ce blog et je l'afficherai devant mon bureau (208)

Friday, May 30, 2008

DPA/consultation de copies L3 civi

Le mardi 10 juin il y a aura une séance consultation de copies/ corrigé/ conseils méthodologiques.
Lundi 2 juin je réserverai une salle et une heure, et je mettrai cette information sur ce blog.

N'hésitez pas à en parler aux autres étudiants dans le groupe.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Option B 150 ans de musique populaire

Voici les notes.
Elles peuvent en principe (jusqu'aux juries) encore changer, mais cela n'arrive quasiment jamais.Je ne mets pas vos noms en entier, mais seulement le prénom et la première lettre du nom de famille.

Julien B 10,5
Marie-Charlotte B 12
Charlie B 8
Anthony B 10
Labri B 10,5
Bérénice B 11
Emilie B 16
Sofia B 10
Benjamin B 15,5
Adrien B 10
Stéphanie C 13
Priscille C 12,5
Vincent C 11
Rémy C 13
Obner D 7
Virginie D 13,5
Tiphaine F 12
Marine G 10
Alaz G 6
Charline G 7
Mélody G 12,5
Christophe G 12
Laura G 13
Natacha H 7
Simon H 12,5
Audrey J. 12
Thomas L 10
Charlotte L 8
Ludivine L 11,5
Dominique L 13
Julie M 12
Lisa M 7
Sophie M. 12
Guillaume M 7
Bénédicte M 12,5
Yamina M 8
Célimène P 12,5
Stéphanie P 13
Mouna P 12
Jérémie P. 10
Julie R. 14
Jéhan R 13
melissa R. 12
Franck R 7,5
Delphine R 8
Damien R 12
john Paul S 11
john Paul S 11
Aurélie S 13
Sophie T. 10
Daniela T 11
Raphaëlla T 11
Marine T. 5
Antoine T 13
Julien V. 13
Allison V 11
Eloïse W 12
Leslie Z 11,5
Alison G 11,5
Jonathan P 11
Christophe B 6
Johan M 16

Coefficients, deuxième session etc

UFR de lettres et sciences humaines - La licence d'anglais 2007-2008

Beaucoup d'étudiants me posent des questions sur les coefficients (est-ce que le contrôle final compte davantage que les devoirs pendant le semestre? etc)

Toutes ces informations sont contenues dans le livret Licence. Si vous avez perdu l'exemplaire que vous gardez à votre chevet, suivez le lien, et en haut à droite de la page web vous trouverez le livret, qui a "force de loi".

Que faire lorsqu'on a été absent lors d'un contrôle?

Jusqu'à un certain point, l'enseignant peut décider comment réagir lors d'une absence justifiée le jour d'un contrôle, mais en général, il faudrait repasser lors de la deuxième session en juin.

Ne demandez pas le remplacement d'un contrôle en cours par un devoir à la maison, c'est un tout autre type d'épreuve, et dans le département, on ne fait pas cela.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Option A cinéma

Je suis dans le calcul des notes.
Ai-je raison de penser que MM Ho et Monnier n'ont pas rendu un devoir à la maison (ou dois-je chercher dans mes tas de papiers)?
Ai-je raison de croire que Mlle Mahawa ne s'est pas présentée au contrôle final?
Merci de me contacter si je me suis trompé!

Projet professionnel suite et fin

La grande majorité des étudiants avaient fait un très bon travail pour le projet professionnel, et j'espère que vous l'avez trouvé profitable.

A l'intention des deux étudiants qui disaient ne pas être au courant (!), voici un extrait des instructions que je vous ai données en début de semestre.

"Sur le plagiat
Bien évidemment vous utilisez les sources, vous ne les recopiez pas. Si vous recopiez une phrase entière d’une source, vous devez mettre la référence précise (A Dupont et B Durand 2004 Le métier d’un clown, Editions Harmattan, Paris p123).
Copier une phrase ou pire un paragraphe sans citer de façon précise la source est assimilé à une intention frauduleuse."

Comme pour toutes les matières, les étudiants qui n'ont pas réussi à avoir la moyenne peuvent se présenter à la deuxième session en juin. Pour le projet professionnel, le mémoire à faire pour la deuxième session est le même que pour la première session (mais vous pouvez changer de métier étudié si vous le souhaitez). Le mémoire doit être rendu à la fin de la première semaine des examens de deuxième session.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Notes projet professionnel

Je sais que les étudiants aiment bien recevoir rapidement les notes. Une urgence familiale m'a empêché de venir à Créteil mardi comme prévu, alors j'affiche ici les notes de mon groupe. Je vous ai identifié par le prénom et la première lettre du nom de famille, au cas où vous ne voulez pas que votre note soit disponible sur le web avec votre nom pendant vingt ans!

L1S2 Projet professionnel groupe de M Mullen
Margault A. 15
Noémie B. 12
Chloé B 14
Manise B 10
Axel B 13,5
Mouna B 14
Abdel B 0
Sofia B 12
Eugénie B 15
Marie C 14
Elsa C 13
Elise C 14
Claire C 14
Céline D 13,5
Céline D 14
Geneviève D 13,5
Audrey E 14,5
Anaïs F 14
Anthony G 12,5
Audrey H 14
Amina HD 0
Lucie K 04
Isabelle L 15
Nadia CL 02
Anne-Claude L 12
Léonore L 14
Léo L 13,5
Aurélie L 13,5
Floriane L 12
Sarah LR 13
Joanna M 10
Camille M 12
Jérémy M 12
Laure M 14,5
Mélany M 14
Marion M 14
Stephy-Rose NN 10
Nadine O 14,5
Pierre P 14
Ludivine P 02
Laura P 13,5
Maureen R 13,5
Sabrina R 14
Oussama S 12,5
Mélanie S 0
Roxane T 02
Trips Marion 12
Urrea Nathan 13
Vidailhet Antoine 12,5

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Projets professionnels


En règle général, les projets professionnels étaient très bien faits. Mieux même que certains projets professionnels effectués dans d'autres universités, qu'on trouve facilement sur le web ( voir lien)

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Soutenances projet professionnel

La plupart des groupes se sont bien inscrits. Les groupes de Mlle Bellama et de Mlle Sourdot se sont inscrits à des heures où je ne serai pas présent! Ils doivent me contacter très rapidement.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Last work to be handed in

L3 students in civilization - most of you have still to hand in a research paper.
Option A cinema - many of you have still to hand in your cinema homework.

Final date for both of these is Wednesday 14th. (I will pick them up early on Thursday morning).

L3 Last exposés

The last three exposés for the L3 class.
The student who explained a document about the 1926 negotiations between Samuel and the TUC got fourteen.
The explanation of the document on the new unionism got fourteen and a half
And the explanation of the document on the ILP and the Communists got ten and a half.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Option A cinéma exams

On Friday, there will be the "contrôle final". This test is ONLY for students registered as régime général. There is another completely different exam on a completely different date (look on the noticeboard) for students who are registered as "régime dérogatoire".


L1 Projet professionnel - mémoires et soutenances

Projet professionnel - groupe de M Mullen
Les personnes suivantes sont concernées. Les autres étudiants de L1 sont inscrits auprès de Mme Weets.

Vous avez rendu votre mémoire au secrétariat du département d’anglais (sur un sujet que j’ai approuvé), ou éventuellement dans mon casier. Les soutenances auront lieu le jeudi 15 et le vendredi 16 mai.

Je mettrai devant mon bureau (208), le vendredi 9 mai à midi un planning, et vous vous inscrirez.

Il n’ y a pas de préparation particulière à faire pour la soutenance, sauf de bien relire l’ensemble du mémoire et bien connaître le travail de toute votre équipe (il s’agit d’un travail collectif).

Si vous n’avez pas la moyenne pour le projet professionnel, vous avez le droit, comme pour toutes les autres matières, à repasser en juin, à la deuxième session.

John Mullen 07.05.08

Mélany MILON
Audrey HAROS
Mouna Bellaman,
Ugur Sakrak
Léonore Légitimus.
Stéphie-Rose Nyot Nyot.
Manise Basile,
Johanna Mafwata
Ludivine Pepe,
Nadia Lebni-Charles
Léo Lemercier,
Geneviève Dongoïda
Céline Defaux.).
LEDOYEN Anne Claude
MENARD Camille
TRIPS Marion
RIO Maureen
LOUP Floriane
NGUYEN Viet Dung
Jessica Dianingana
Anémone Trysavath
Jenna Géraud-Girard
Nadine Oubly
Laure Miambaye
Audrey Emery
Roxane Tapiero
Anthony GAUVIN
Margault AUBRY
Isabelle LAPOTRE
Pierre pongalou
Marion Montabord
Valentine Cinier
Aurélie Lesueur
Laetitia Wittezaele
Lucie Kundlova
Nathan URREA

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

screenonline: Social Realism

screenonline: Social Realism

This site is full of information for students of British cinema.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

L3 civilisation Exposé marks etc

Exposé marks

I know you like to have the marks for your exposés, so that you can calculate how much time you want to work on the rest of the civilization tasks :=) So here they are.
I didn’t want to put your names and your marks on the internet for the whole world to know forever, so here are the marks by text.

The student who gave an exposé on « An account of a Captain Swing Riot » got 13,5 on twenty
The exposé on a 1908 speech by Mrs Pankhurst got 10.
The exposé on a Guardian article on 1926 also got 10
The exposé on the Fabian Manifesto got 13
The exposé on the autobiography of Trollope got 12
The exposé on the extract from John Stuart Mill got 11,5
The exposé on the piece from Karl Marx « a spectre is haunting Europe ... » got 11,5 also
The exposé on a parliamentary debate on the conciliation bill in 1912 got 12
And the exposé on the extract from Mary Wollstonecraft’s book got 13,5

In the last class on 9th May, we will have some more exposés, and vital information.
I will also have a short questionnaire for you about this semester's course, to see if next year I want to change aspects of it.

Good luck with revision etc.
Don’t forget to look at this page, which I will add to next week



Wednesday, April 16, 2008

L3 YouTube - Blackleg Miner (Steeleye Span)

YouTube - Blackleg Miner (Steeleye Span)

One of the documents you have in your booklet is the strike song "blackleg miner". This is still a popular song today at folk concerts.

This youtube video shows a Steeleye Span version (one of the most important English folk groups).

projet professionnel - dernier rappel

Les mémoires doivent être rendus avant le 7 mai. Déposez-les, s'il vous plaît, auprès de la secrétaire du département d'anglais.
Si le secrétariat est fermé, vous pouvez déposer votre mémoire dans mon casier dans la salle des enseignants au premier étage (mais si tout le monde fait ça, le casier sera vite rempli :=( ).

Les soutenances auront lieu le 15 et 16 mai. J'afficherai bientôt un planning sur la porte de mon bureau ( 208 ) pour inscription.

Si vous avez des questions, envoyez moi un courrier électronique.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Option A cinema The Dam Busters (film) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Dam Busters (film) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is another British war film we will be looking at.

Option A cinema David Lean - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

David Lean - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

On Friday we have our last class, since the 9th May will be the day of the final test. We will be looking at a couple of films. One of them will be "The Bridge on the River Kwai" directed by David Lean. Here is the wikipedia article about this director for you to have a read through.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

L3 TUC History Online 1926

The Union Makes Us Strong: TUC History Online

This site shows you a lot of documents connected with the General Strike of 1926. It is on the Trades Union Congress site, and so can be expected to be sympathetic to the strikers.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Grammar -should have

English Grammar Lessons

Finally (for today) here is some revision on "should have".

Grammar - had better

English Grammar Lessons

The expression "had better" (as in "You'd better be ready by the time I come") also causes some difficulty. Here is an explanation and short grammar exercises.

Grammar - supposed to

English Grammar Lessons

A lot of students have difficulties with the expression "supposed to". Here is a page with some useful short exercises, which includes also other expressions with "suppose".

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

L3 Civilization - the 1907 Music Hall strike

This week we are looking at trade unions between the 1880s and the end of the First World War.

One strike which made the headlines in Edwardian England was the Music Hall strike of 1907. In some ways this was not a typical strike - music hall artistes are not typical workers. Yet it seemed that both employers and employees used tactics typical of industrial conflict.

The strike did not cause economic disruption at the level of that of strikes by dockers or gas workers, but the popularity of the music hall meant that it was symbolically very important. It has been said that the fact that the strike was won by the artistes and musicians persuaded many other workers of the usefulness of joining trade unions.

You can find here, in French, a research article I wrote recently on the 1907 Music Hall strike.

You will find here

Monday, April 07, 2008

L3 Civilization - revision page

Contestation sociale en Angleterre

There are 3 more weeks of classes (two before the April holidays and one after) or rather two and a half since Thursday 8th May is a bank holiday.
The exam will be on Tuesday 20th May at 9 O clock (unless the timetable changes - check for yourselves, when it is posted). It will last four hours - you will spend two hours on a text commentary and two hours on an essay.

So, apart from reading more history books, or chapters from history books, you can visit the revision page I have set up. There you can listen again to extracts from classes.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

British cinema Revision

British cinema Revision - MP3 files, extracts from classes

To help you revise for your exam (which is just after the April holidays), you will find behind this link some extracts from the history sections of our classes, in MP3 form. Don't hesitate to download and listen to them on your MP3 players.

Remember also to read the books recommended in the course description, especially

Pilard, Philippe Histoire du cinéma britannique, Paris : Nathan, 1996

and, of course, to go to the cinema!

Friday, April 04, 2008

Option A cinema homework

As I explained in class, for students on Régime général, the second marked exercise will be a comparison of two films, one in English, one in French, in the same category. Below are the different choices. Remember you only choose two films!

NB Plagiarism : any one sentence copied from another source is a serious problem, except if the source is both quoted and justified.

First category
Heritage Films
Compare one of the films on the right with one of the films on the left

Orgeuil et préjugés Jean de Florette
Raison et sentiment Manon des sources
The Remains of the Day Les choristes
Howards End

Category two
« Social films »
Compare any one of the films on the right with one of the films on the left

Dirty Pretty Things Le fils
My name is Joe Ressources Humaines
Brassed Off La Graine et le Mulet
East is East La Promesse
Trainspotting La Haine

Category three
Compare one of the films on the right with one of the films on the left
Monty Python and the Holy Grail Les Visiteurs
The Full Monty Bienvenue chez les ch’tis
Bridget Jones Diary Le dîner des cons
Love Actually

Your comparison should be between 600 and 800 words long. You should not tell the story of the films, or talk too much about the actors, but talk more about why the director may have chosen this story, what values are presented, how the audience is attracted and amused or educated by the film, why people liked or did not like the film, and what image of France (or Belgium) and England are presented in the films.

L3 Civilization - Four suffrage campaigners

Jill Liddington has written a book describing the lives of a small number of women's rights campaigners. She tries to understand why they decided to become suffragists or suffragettes and what it change din their life. Here is a lecture she gave about this subject in London last Summmer.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Projet professionnel - Dates

Comme vous le savez, le mémoire est à rendre juste après les vacances d'avril.
Les soutenances auront sans doute lieu le 15 et 16 mai.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

L1 Grammar Can, Could, May and Might (ability and permission) Exercise at Auto-English

Can, Could, May and Might (ability and permission) Exercise at Auto-English

A simple exercise on ability and permission.

L3 Civilization Keir Hardie - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Keir Hardie - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

We just mentioned last week the first working man to become a member of parliament in Britain - Keir Hardie. This is what wikipedia says about him.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Projet professionnel - Rappel

Un rappel que vous trouverez ici les deux documents avec toutes les instructions pour la rédaction et la présentation du mémoire.

1) premier document :
Les consignes techniques

b) Deuxième document :

http://perso.orange.fr/john.mullen/PP.doc (Le contenu du mémoire)

Vous rendrez les mémoires juste après les vacances d'avril, dans mon casier à la salle des profs.

Si vous avez un problème, vous pouvez laisser un commentaire ici ou m'envoyer un mail john.mullen arobase wanadoo.fr

Option B Histoire de la musique populaire

Vous trouverez ici une introduction au Reggae.

Option A cinéma : Howards End

This evenig on the television (ARTE), you can watch "Howard's End" (Retour à Howards End), a classic British heritage film.


Etant tout à fait remis je serai présent à tous mes cours cette semaine.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Oxford DNB: Brilliant Women: the Bluestocking circle

Oxford DNB: Brilliant Women: the Bluestocking circle

A new exhibition in London about women intellectuals in Britain in the eighteenth century.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

L3 Journalists and Newspapers

Journalists and Newspapers

Here is a list of journalists and newspapers in radical nineteenth century England, which could be useful. If any of you have the soul of a researcher, most of these newspapers have never been seriousy studied, but are lying untouched in some dusty library ...

Monday, March 24, 2008

L3 Civilization Mark Steel on Karl Marx

This youtube video is the beginning of a very entertaining ... comedy biography of Karl Marx!
By the famous English comedian Mark Steel, who presents Marx from a humorous, but sympathetic point of view.

L1 Grammar Modals Can Be Able to Quiz

Modals Can Be Able to Quiz for ESL EFL English Students

Here is a short quiz on can, could and be able to.
You have to think about your answer, then click on the arrow to find the correct answer.

This is in the area of modality of action.

If you are surprised by the answers, check your grammar book.

Option B Musique populaire - Punk Rock

Les aspects visuels de l'esthetique punk sont importants, et puisque je ne compte pas me déguiser pour donner des cours, je ne peux que vous recommander ces videos sur youtube.

Crass critique la commercialisation du punk - et dans leur vidéo vous verrez beaucoup des symboles de l'esthetique punk

Political punk rock - Stiff Little Fingers

Interview télévisé des Sex Pistols avec sous-titres en français.

Et le video de « Anarchy in the UK »

Peut être étrangement, étant donné sa réputation, la mouvance punk donnait souvent un rôle plus grand aux femmes que d'autres genres de musique. Voir ici The Au Pairs en live

Ce video montre un grand nombre de femmes punk et aussi nous rappelle que la période punk était marqué par des centaines ou des milliers de groupes, pas par des dizaines.

Et après le punk - Tom Robinson Band « Power in the Darkness »

L3 Civilization

The next class will be looking at Socialism in the 19th century. You need to know who the main thinkers are : Saint Simon, Robert Owen, William Morris, Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels. The photo shows a statue of Robert Owen in Manchester. What image does it give of him?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Cinema : Serious confusion

These two men are not the same person!

Option A Cinema some links to look at

First of all a few more points about Ken Loach :

Interview of Ken Loach in 1994 on youtube

A discussion with Ken Loach in Paris in 2006
(en français : Attention, extrait de film assez dur)

Extract from « kes »

And a little about two other very important directors who learned a lot from Loach.
Firstly Stephen Frears

Stephen Frears on wikipedia (follow links for articles on some of the major films like "The Van" and "The Snapper")

Video trailer for Stephen Frears film : The Queen

And then Mike Leigh

Mike Leigh on wikipedia

Video trailer for Mike Leigh’s film « Secrets and Lies »

Video trailer for Mike Leigh's film "Vera Drake

Friday, March 21, 2008

Option A cinema - DST suggested answers

DST Option A Cinema mars 2008. Suggested answers.

Note : There are several answers possible, these are just suggestions. If you show both your understanding of the passage and extract shown, and your knowledge of the main challenges and successes of British cinema in the 20th Century, that should be fine.

Part one (6 points)
Watch the extract from the film “East is East”.

Write a few paragraphs about the extract, noting what image of Britain is given and how, and how this compares to images of Britain in the main types of films we have seen so far. How interesting do you find the image presented ?

Suggested answer :
In this extract we see a part of town where ordinary people live - they obviously are not part of the elite. The houses are basic and uniform, the children play in the streets, the parents and children are not sophisticated and polite. It is a part of town which is ethnically very mixed, and we see the mixing and interaction, in particular of different religious and cultural customs.

The showing of the lives of working class people is typical of the films of Ken Loach and others over the last few years. However, many of Loach’s films until recently have shown parts of the working class which are not ethnically mixed.

The image given in the extract from “East is East” is in many ways very positive, some might even say idealized. The only racist seen is a ridiculous and isolated character, obviously not enjoying the sypmathy even of his daughter and grandson, who, on the contrary are very much friends with the non-white children. It is an image of multicultural Britain where there is no tension. Even religious customs - the Christian procession at the beginning, and then the Pakistani wedding ceremony, do not cause tensions between the communities. Everybody enjoys watching the Christian procession. The whole street except for one person is excited about the pakistani wedding. The priest is a friend to everyone (and can play good football too). The Pakistani father and the extremely English mother both have faults. Although the father has tried to impose his culture on his son, the father too is shown with some sympathy.
We can see the director is trying to deal with complex questions carefully, but is it oversimplified?

Part two : read the following passage and answer the questions (14 points)

i. British director Ken Loach has launched an attack against other UK film-makers, saying they are far too preoccupied with Hollywood. Loach, famous for films like My Name is Joe, Raining Stones and Riff-Raff, is in Cannes for a special screening of his film Kes, which was made in 1969. Loach's comments could hit a raw nerve this year, as no British films have been shortlisted for the prestigious Palme d'Or.
ii. He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "The climate generally in Britain is to make films that look across the Atlantic and I think that's disastrous." "It means our own culture gets devalued and it's as though there has to be an American in everything."
iii. Loach said that British films and many directors use British films as calling-cards for the states. "I think it's time British film-makers stopped allowing themselves to be colonised so ruthlessly by US ideas and stopped looking so slavishly to the US market," he said, adding that it "demeans film-making when they do that".
iv. Ironically, his latest film, Bread and Roses, was made in Los Angeles, but Loach insisted it was a "very anti-Hollywood film". He said it was a story of the people who clean the offices in LA. "There is a nice irony in making a film in LA about that half of the people you don't see - that aren't represented - they're the ones who do the work really," he said. "Their lives are as full of drama and comedy - much more so really - than the white people who live in the hills."
v. But despite dipping his toes in US waters, he imagined it will be his last film in America. "It's a fairly hostile place to be in - probably the most difficult place in the world to make films, oddly enough because they have very fixed ways of doing things," he said.
BBC News
Read the document and answer the questions in your own words. Do not quote the article. You are expected to show your knowledge of recent British cinema.

1 What does Loach complain about ? (3 points)

Suggested answer : Ken Loach is unhappy because the films he sees being made in England are too much centred around American values and American preoccupations. Directors are only worried about whether their film will sell in America, and are careful to use an American star to help things along or, even worse, they only make a British film in the hope of being invited to work in Hollywood afterwards. He would like to see a real independence in British films.

2 How does Loach try to avoid being too « Hollywood » - give examples from the article and also from outside the article. (5 points)

Suggested answer : He deliberately uses stories about ordinary people, who Hollywood normally doesn’t write about, and at the centre of his stories is the dignity and drama of ordinary people, a very positive image. He rejects the idea of an automatic « happy end » to a movie. In addition, to try to give an impression of real life, he frequently uses amateur actors, people who have really lived similar experiences rather than people who have learned how to act at acting school. Sometimes he does not give the actors scripts, as he wants them to be spontaneous. Even his lighting and camerawork are often rough and ready rather than smooth as Hollywood is.

3 American domination is a long-term problem for British film-makers. Explain some of the different strategies that British film-makers and governments have used throughout the last hundred years to survive despite US domination. (6 points)

Suggested answer :
US domination is a very old problem for British film makers. At some periods the government has made laws to defend British film production - for example in the 1920s, a law was passed obliging all cinemas to present a certain percentage of British-made films. (a Quota). One of the disadvantages of the law was that cinemas were tempted to make very cheap, low-quality films simply to fill the quota. The government later tried to stop this practice by establishing a minimum amount that could be spent on a film, per minute of film.

In more recent years the most important tactics to protect British film making have been attempts to find « niche markets » - to specialize in particular types of film, and not to try to compete with the American bestselling blockbusters. So « heritage films » of famous British romantic novels, (Emma, The English Patient, The Remains of the Day,and so on)sophisticated comedies about the upper middle classes, (Four Weddings and a Funeral) or working class « realist » films (Ken Loach’s films, Trainspotting, the Full Monty, and so on) have made up the greater number of films made in Britain.

Other tactics include making joint projects, using American money, and/or making sure there is an American star in the film (Notting Hill, Four Weddings and a Funeral, A Fish named Wanda, and so on).

Option A: East Is East (xhtml)

:: rogerebert.com :: Reviews :: East Is East (xhtml)

Later today I will post suggested answers for the option A classroom test.
This link takes you to a review of the film "East is East" of which we saw an extract in the test. There is another review of it in the booklet you got from the Libalu.

It was a controversial film.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

L3 civilization Suggested text commentary

Here is the document you had to comment on in the classroom test, and a suggested commentary, below it. There are many other ways to do this commentary, of course.
Spend some time checking out which questions you did not really answer, and at which points you could have demonstrated your knowledge but didn't. Check back on this blog in a few days time because there will be some more links for you to be working on while I am ill.

The document:

I was glad to attend the meeting at Newcastle, because some misunderstanding was commencing in the Radical ranks, and I availed myself of that opportunity of pointing out the necessity of Union, and of advising them upon the very first appearance of a dispute to expel the disputants from their body.

An attempt was made to get up a paper in opposition to the Northern Liberator , one of the best papers in the world, and that I hope I prevented. I was very ill on my return from the meeting, and was obliged to have a person sitting in my room all night; however, the spirit prevailed, for I awoke and got up at half-past five, started eighty miles on my way to PETER BUSSEY's dinner, at Bradford, which took place on Monday last, a report of which will be found in the Star .

On Monday, I travelled from York to Bradford, 34 miles, and had the honour to preside as Chairman, at one of the most splendid public entertainments I have ever witnessed. On Tuesday morning, I left Bradford for Leeds, to beat NEDDY BAINES and the Whigs; which, let them say what they may, I did most effectively. After the meeting, I returned to Bradford, thence to Queenshead, where a dinner was given to me by the virtuous mountaineers of that district, the whole village was a dinner party, for every house was full, and 1,000 would have dined if accomodation could have been procured. I left them at eleven o'clock, and the only drunken man which I had seen in my tour was a manufacturer, lying in the middle of the road, with his horse standing over him. He is one of the electors.

Thus, Gentlemen, ends my eight days tour, during which time I attended nine public meetings, travelled over seven hundred miles, slept, upon an average, three hours a night, and once again united the Scotch and English Radicals in a union more lasting than brass, and one which, I trust, even your malicious ingenuity will not be able to break. I have not been able, in the space allotted, to do justice to my subject; however, I trust that I have said enough to prove the impossibility of successfully attacking our ranks.

And now, Gentlemen, although you have put me to considerable trouble and expense, I thank you. From the 18th of December to the 15th of January, I have attended in London, Bristol, Manchester, Queenshead, Bradford, Leeds, Newcastle, Carlisle, Glasgow, Paisley, and Edinburgh, 22 large public meetings, and have travelled over 1,500 miles; and I can say that your moral philosophy has been the greatest enemy to our cause. You are advocates of Moral Force.

I have set you an example of what Moral Force can affect, and to you many of whom are more wealthy than myself, but who, nevertheless, travel for the people as post horse for their masters, at so much a mile, to you, Gentlemen, I say, "Go and do likewise;" and then all thought of physical force will vanish.'
Feargus O'Connor, Northern Star , Vol.2, No.62 (19th of January, 1839),

Suggested text commentary on the above article.

The document is a newspaper article written by one of the main leaders of the Chartist movement, Feargus O Connor. O Connor was a very popular orator and played a key role.

In the debates which animated Chartist circles, he was generally identified with the arguments of “physical force” - the idea that persuasion would not be sufficient to win the six demands of the charter (universal male suffrage, the secret ballot, payment for MPs, annual parliaments, fair division of constituencies, and the end to property qualifications for MPs). But this identification is not simple - O Connor himself often insisted that “Moral Force” was his priority, though he may not have had the same interpretation of the term as others.

O Connor was very dedicated to the movement’s aims, and would spend many months in prison because of articles he has written. In the present document we see he works energetically despite his illness and severe lack of sleep. After 1842, he was to launch the Chartist Land Plan, a mass movement based on the idea of re-establishing a class of small farmers in order to escape from the difficult situation of industrial workers.

Early in the movement O Connor founded, in Yorkshire, the weekly newspaper “The Northern Star”, from which this article is taken. Although not the official organ of the Chartists, The Northern star was one of its most successful and influential newspapers. It would be read by supporters of the Charter, and sold to their contacts, and its letters page featured all the many debates on strategy and tactics which were characteristic of the movement.

The article was published at the beginning of 1839, thus in the early stages of the movement. That is to say, it is written before the presentation to parliament, later in the year, of the first chartist petition, and of course before key moments in the movement such as the Newport uprising, which will to some extent test the tactic of armed uprising, or the 1842 strike, the most powerful action of the movement. At this moment, in early 1839, debates continue about appropriate methods. In some towns military preparations are being made by a minority of chartists; other chartists are insisting that Moral Force can persuade the elite to give the charter, and that more forceful methods are unnecessary. Finally, large sections of the chartists are talking of the need for a “Grand National Holiday” or “sacred month” - a general strike.

O Connor’s article represents a sort of activist’s journal. It presents his week’s activity, a rapid succession of public meetings and journeys from town to town. He expresses his satisfaction at the week’s activities, and particularly at the fact that he has been able to reunite diverging forces within the movement, into “ a union more lasting than brass”. Finally he mocks certain “gentlemen” who, he believes, have been involved in attempts to split the movement.

The first paragraph, his account of the meeting in Newcastle, shows he tried to stop the appearance of a new rival to the “Northern Liberator”, a radical Newcastle newspaper. We see that O Connor both defends “the necessity of union”, and the need for discipline against “disputants” whom he wants to see expelled. This event highlights the permanence of internal debate within nineteenth century social movements - debate which can turn to conflict and/or turn personal (as later conflicts involving O Connor were to do). It shows the difficulty of both encouraging debate (as the Northern Star certainly tried to do), and preventing acute internal conflict which could divide the movement.

In the second paragraph there are two points of note. Firstly the rather triumphal tone (“to beat Neddy Baines and the Whigs... which I did most effectively” l. 13). This tone will continue to the end of the article. This tone shows us the need for enthusiasm and inspiration to build a mass movement in very difficult circumstances. It might also be seen as somewhat self-centred - O Connor was later to be accused of being excessively authoritarian.

Secondly, an important reference is made to alcohol. (l.17) O’Connor claims that despite the huge party given for him in Queenshead, the only drunken man he saw was factory owner ( a “manufacturer”) who already had the right to vote and therefore was not part of the chartist movement. O’Connor no doubt mentions this drunken man because many of those who opposed chartism claimed the “lower classes” were too ignorant and obsessed with alcohol to deserve the right to vote. This argument carried so much weight at the time that a few years later a section of the chartists - “temperance chartists” - inisted that the first step to the charter was to persuade large numbers of people to promise never to drink alcohol again. Such an act was supposed both to strengthen the determination of the chartists themselves and to impress sections of the elite.

In the last paragraph, O Connor adresses himself to certain “gentlemen” who he accuses of wishing to divide the chartists deliberately (l. 22). He identifies these men as saying they believe in “moral force” (l. 29), but he accuses them of in fact being paid representatives (“at so much a mile”, l 32) of the elite (“masters” l 32). He says that their attempts to divide the chartists will not be successful (l. 22, l 24). In the last sentences he contests their definition of “moral force” : he claims that the real “moral force” is the energy to go round the country organizing people as he does, and he (ironically) invites the “gentlemen” to do the same. If they were to do this, he claims, “physical force” would no longer be necessary.

The argument about the “real” meaning of “moral force” and “physical force” in the last paragraph is characteristic of the chartist movement. These two concepts are considered to be in competition, but in fact there is not agreement on their exact meaning - there is continual negotiation about their meanings. Many chartists will of course be involved both with “moral force” methods and with “physical force” methods. It is perhaps interesting that the concepts chosen are not clearer. A debate about “armed insurrection” and “peaceful persuasion” might have been simpler, although the dangers of repression, among other elements, often oblige leading chartists not to speak too clearly about the tactics they are recommending.

The work of Feargus O Connor, speaking and writing, will contribute to the success of the first Chartist petition, which will contain a very large number of signatures. The rejection of the petition and the arrest of many chartist leaders will give rise to the use of other tactics, such as armed uprising. O’Connor will remain a chartist leaders for some years, notably involved in the setting up of the Land Plan.

The chartist movement will not achieve its aims, but the nature of O’Connor’s work as a fulltime activist will be similar to future movements - trade unionism or women’s suffrage for example. O’Connor will be an inspiration for some, even if the first historians of chartism emphasize some negative points of his legacy.

1. There are a hundred ways of writing a good commentary on this document. This is only one of them. However, all of them remain centred on the document, as well as demonstrating your knowledge of the historical processes at work..
2. I am hoping you can find within my commentary answers to the following questions : Who is writing, when, why, how, in what context..
3. Notice how it is important to find the link between the document and what you want to prove you know about the movement in general.
4. I would not really expect in L3 you to find the notion of “negotiated meanings”, though later this is essential to political history. Words such as “violence”, “terrorism”, “suffragette”, “Christian”, “extremist”, “radical”, and many others, will all be subject to permanent negotiation and re-negotiation of meaning.]