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Identify and explain key quotes in 'A Taste of Honey'

In this worksheet, students will be able to identify and explain key quotes in Shelagh Delaney's, 'A Taste of Honey'.

'Identify and explain key quotes in 'A Taste of Honey'' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 4

GCSE Subjects:   English Literature

GCSE Boards:   AQA, Eduqas

Curriculum topic:   Modern Texts: Drama, Post-1914 Prose / Drama

Curriculum subtopic:   A Taste of Honey

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

In the exam, you will need to able to support your ideas with quotations from the text.

 

You should try to build a bank of quotations for each character and theme and learn these so that you can use them readily in your exam response.

 

Top tip for the exam: while it is important to use direct quotations, you will also be rewarded marks for paraphrasing or making reference to part of the text!

 

notepad and pencil

 

In this activity you will practise identifying:

- who is speaking in particular quotations

- who is being to referred to in quotations

- what quotations suggest about a character

-  what theme or idea is explored in a quotation

 

You should always refer to your own text when working through these examples.  These quotations are for reference only.

Who is being referred to in the quotation: 'You've made my life a misery'?

In the opening scene, we learn a lot about Jo's childhood. Which quotation best shows that her childhood has been unstable with lots of moving around which has affected her education?

 

Jo clearly feels neglected by her mother Helen. Choose the quotations below where Delaney reveals Jo's feelings of neglect. 

'You've never cared much before about what I was doing'

' I take after you.'

' And leave my mother alone too.'

'It wouldn't be the first time I've been thrown out of my bed to make room for one of your...'

'You've certainly never been affectionate with me.'

Match the following quotations to the character speaking.

Column A

Column B

'He's got a wallet full of reasons.'
Helen
'You jealous little cat!'
Helen
'You leave me alone. And leave my mother alone too...
Jo
'Ah! Yes, number thirty eight. A charming little t...
Peter

Who is being described in the following quotation: 'I'll probably never see you again. I know it'?

In Act 2, Scene 1, Jo says: 'Look at that washing, it's dirty, and look at those filthy children'  What does she go onto say about this situation?

Complete the passage below to consider the following quotation: 'Helen: I've come to look after you.'

In Act 2, Scene 2, which quotation shows that despite wanting independence from her mother, Jo still feels an attachment to her and wants to be able to depend on her?

Match the following quotations to the theme they are linked to.

Column A

Column B

Prejudice
'it's not marrying love between us, thank God.'
Gender
'Bloody little pansy'
Race
'You're the first girl I've met who really didn't ...
Love
'I don't want to be a mother. I don't want to be a...
Independence
'I can work for the baby myself.'

Match the following quotations to the character speaking.

 GeofJo
'You'd makes someone a wonderful wife.'
'Someones got to look after you.'
'I wouldn't ask you to do anything you didn't want to do.'
'I'm not having anybody running my life for me.'
'You've reformed me.'
'Before I met you I didn't care whether I lived or died.'
  • Question 1

Who is being referred to in the quotation: 'You've made my life a misery'?

CORRECT ANSWER
Helen
EDDIE SAYS
This quotation is from the opening scene and highlights how Jo feels about Helen; she feels Helen has ruined her life. In the dialogue in the opening scene, you'll be able to find lots of key quotations which reveal how the characters feel about each other. This opening dialogue is important in drawing light on the mother-daughter relationship that the rest of the play will focus on.
  • Question 2

In the opening scene, we learn a lot about Jo's childhood. Which quotation best shows that her childhood has been unstable with lots of moving around which has affected her education?

 

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Did you find this quotation? Jo's talent as an artist is shown in the opening scene and recognised by Helen. However, Jo clearly shows that she is disillusioned with education and blames the fact that she's moved around so much for her lack of achievement. Delaney shows that although education was free during the '50s, working-class children didn't necessarily achieve their full potential because of the difficult struggles their families faced, such as housing.
  • Question 3

Jo clearly feels neglected by her mother Helen. Choose the quotations below where Delaney reveals Jo's feelings of neglect. 

CORRECT ANSWER
'You've never cared much before about what I was doing'
'It wouldn't be the first time I've been thrown out of my bed to make room for one of your...'
'You've certainly never been affectionate with me.'
EDDIE SAYS
Did you manage to spot all three? In these three quotations, we get the impression that Jo has felt rejected by her mother when she has prioritised men over her, even to the point where she's been thrown out of her bed! Jo also expresses how she's felt a lack of affection and interest from her mother, who she feels has never cared before about what she is doing. The unmarked quotations above show more about how Jo still feels some attachment to her mother and even sees traits of her Helen in herself. Remember in the exam that it's important to use the most effective quotations to support your points!
  • Question 4

Match the following quotations to the character speaking.

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

'He's got a wallet full of reason...
Helen
'You jealous little cat!'
Helen
'You leave me alone. And leave my...
Jo
'Ah! Yes, number thirty eight. A ...
Peter
EDDIE SAYS
Did you manage to match them all? In the three-way arguments between Jo, Helen and Peter, lots of different emotions are expressed. We often see Helen defending Peter over her own daughter and even being verbally abusive to Jo. Delaney presents Peter as a suspicious character through Jo's questions about the photos in his wallet. His comment about the one with the 'long legs' shows him to be untrustworthy and disrespectful to women. However, Delaney also reveals the complexity of Jo's feelings in these scenes. Despite feeling rejected by her mother, she clearly feels some attachment and protectiveness of her mother.
  • Question 5

Who is being described in the following quotation: 'I'll probably never see you again. I know it'?

CORRECT ANSWER
The Boy
Boy
Jimmy
EDDIE SAYS
How did you do? Here we see Jo's insecurity coming through. Although the relationship between her and the Boy seems to be based on real love and affection, she shows a lack of trust in his intentions. This is perhaps reflective of the insecurity and unreliability she's experienced in her relationship with her mother, which she's now projecting onto her other relationships. Indeed, Jo gets this one just right! The Boy doesn't return to Jo after his service, showing that her mistrust in men was well justified.
  • Question 6

In Act 2, Scene 1, Jo says: 'Look at that washing, it's dirty, and look at those filthy children'  What does she go onto say about this situation?

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Did you find the correct quotation? This is a key quotation in the play! Not only does Delaney depict the working-class struggle through Jo's description of her surroundings and the people living around her, but she also reveals more about Jo's feelings. Here we see Jo projecting her own experiences onto others - she has openly blamed her mother for the neglect she has experienced and now assumes that her experience is shared by the working-class families living around her. She even goes onto say 'His mother ought not to be allowed.'
  • Question 7

Complete the passage below to consider the following quotation: 'Helen: I've come to look after you.'

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Did you manage to find all three words? This scene is important in Delaney showing a different side to Helen. Previously we've seen Helen's neglect and unreliability highlighted through Jo's dialogue and Helen's actions. However, we can see that Helen does love her daughter, despite not always being able to show this in the right way.
  • Question 8

In Act 2, Scene 2, which quotation shows that despite wanting independence from her mother, Jo still feels an attachment to her and wants to be able to depend on her?

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
Did you find this one? Delaney highlights here that Jo's feelings are contradictory - she's been very explicit in criticising her mother and wanting independence from her but this quotation shows that her feelings are more complex. Particularly in becoming a mother herself, she wishes that she could share this experience with her own mother.
  • Question 9

Match the following quotations to the theme they are linked to.

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

Prejudice
'Bloody little pansy'
Gender
'I don't want to be a mother. I d...
Race
'You're the first girl I've met w...
Love
'it's not marrying love between u...
Independence
'I can work for the baby myself.'
EDDIE SAYS
Did you manage to match them all? Lots of themes are explored throughout the play. For each theme, try to build a bank of quotations you could use in an exam response. The more you learn and practise these, the easier it will be to use them in the exam!
  • Question 10

Match the following quotations to the character speaking.

CORRECT ANSWER
 GeofJo
'You'd makes someone a wonderful wife.'
'Someones got to look after you.'
'I wouldn't ask you to do anything you didn't want to do.'
'I'm not having anybody running my life for me.'
'You've reformed me.'
'Before I met you I didn't care whether I lived or died.'
EDDIE SAYS
How did you do? The quotations above show us all of the different emotions at play in the relationship between Geof and Jo. We see Jo wanting to be independent but also recognising that being around Geof has changed her and given her hope. Geof, on the other hand, is shown as truly respectful of Jo as a woman but also depends on her for his happiness too. There appears to be mutual respect in their relationship; perhaps this is because Geof is suggested to be gay and therefore not the typical misogynistic man that Delaney presents.
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