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An English teacher marking the exam that Black Sheep appeared in came by and left the official questions:

Dear Mr Peek,
I'm an English teacher correcting the exams on your book at the moment.

The exact questions were:

1. Outline the protagonist's situation, his crime and the consequences as presented in the extract from the novel.

2. Analyse the way the totalitarian state is portrayed in this excerpt from the novel Black Sheep. Consider narrative perpsective, atmosphere, interaction and language.

3.1 In this future state "Multiculturalism [is seen as] a most heinous crime" (l. 13). Against the background of this view discuss the problems and chances of multiculturalism. Refer to your knowledge of multicultural societies today and to the film "East is East".


3.2 A publishing house is planning an anthology of dystopian literature. Write a letter to the person in charge in which you recommend this extract as an excellent example of a dystopian text. Support your views with your knowledge of dystopian literature and current events.

Text: Ben Peek, Black Sheep, London: Prime Books, 2007, p. 9-11

All the best

I told a couple of people about this on the weekend, and the first thing I was asked by everyone was, 'Did you get paid for that?'

In other news, it seems that I'm going to be the guest of honour at a dinner in a couple of weeks. It's happening out at UNSW, which is where I picked up my PhD, and I'm fairly sure I'm a last minute replacement, but I've never actually been a guest of honour before, and it ought to be good for a laugh. Apparently I have to give a speech, and I was thinking that maybe I'd just talk for a while about the fact that I paid seventeen fifty for a film last week and that I'm thinking of starting a campaign wherein I write to movie stars and demand my cash back. Or, maybe I'll come up with something different. Either way I have a bit of time to come up with something to say to a room full of people who won't know who I am. Perhaps I'll pretend to be an astronaut.

Or perhaps I'll write an apology to German students who got stuck with questions about Black Sheep.




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May. 4th, 2009 05:02 am (UTC)
Does this not mean that all those German students had to buy copies of Black Sheep?
May. 4th, 2009 05:04 am (UTC)
no. it was just in the exam paper, so it was the first three pages of the book.
May. 4th, 2009 05:17 am (UTC)
May. 4th, 2009 05:24 am (UTC)
yeah, bit of a shame, but it's still pretty awesome that a book like mine, with all the issues it has had in getting read, ended up in an exam paper in germany.
May. 4th, 2009 05:40 am (UTC)
Yeah! Absolutely. Given the book and its content, maybe it should have its barrow pushed in other educational markets. It'd be a natural for upper high school "issues-y" literature and English courses right? Is it still available on demand from the publisher?

May. 4th, 2009 10:35 am (UTC)
yeah, it is. i've no idea how i'd get it into courses for schools and such though.
May. 4th, 2009 05:17 am (UTC)
GOH! Awesome! My advice... don't give them the 'all publishers are on crack' speech
May. 4th, 2009 05:24 am (UTC)
...but, like, that one is so me.
May. 4th, 2009 05:31 am (UTC)
I like it too. But you don't want people laughing too hard and spraying their dinner all over the place.
May. 5th, 2009 02:12 am (UTC)
Hey, what's your email address?
May. 5th, 2009 02:13 am (UTC)
catsparks at gmail.com
May. 4th, 2009 07:58 am (UTC)
I'm thinking of starting a campaign wherein I write to movie stars and demand my cash back

Joe Queenan already tried that.
May. 4th, 2009 10:35 am (UTC)
yes, that's true, innit?
May. 5th, 2009 02:13 am (UTC)
Talk about Samson and Delilah...

Brilliant. You seen it?
May. 5th, 2009 02:51 am (UTC)
nah. gets released here this week, tho--i'd heard it was alright, so was a bit interested.

one of the things i've been watching of late is a show called IN TREATMENT. only seen a few episodes, but i'm liking how it's all set out, and how strongly dialogue based it is.
May. 5th, 2009 02:55 am (UTC)
I love SD. Doesn't tug at your heartstrings, just tells the story...'

Yeah, In Treatment's been on in the states for a couple of years. It's pretty cool.
May. 5th, 2009 03:02 am (UTC)
sweet, man. i'll give it a look into then.
May. 5th, 2009 10:04 pm (UTC)
I fancy such usage as appearing in an English exam is what ELR payments cover. In a very general kind of way.
May. 12th, 2009 12:03 pm (UTC)
i like the idea of pretent to be an astronaut :)

any how let us know how it did go.

Enjoy the important night

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