To Sir with Love, E.R Braithwaite. How Teacher Pupil Relationships Are Used to Explore Key Themes

906 Words Dec 25th, 2010 4 Pages
To Sir With Love How the teacher pupil relationship is used to explore key themes in the novel.

'To Sir With Love' is written by E. R. Braithwaite and includes some key themes throughout the novel. Racism, values, and relationships are some themes that are explored with the use of Braithwaite's relationship with his class. He explores the relationships not only with the individual class members but with the class as a whole.
Braithwaites relationship with his class goes through three stages in the novel; silent treatment, noisy treatment and open protest. It is only after experiencing these stages that Braithwaite is finally accepted by the class and given respect. These stages explore the maturity of the class and how their values
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Braithwaite uses the relationship between him and one of his students Pamela Dare to explore the themes of maturity, relationships and racism in the novel. Pamela is one of Greenslade High School's more intelligent students. She develops a crush on Braithwaite during the novel and stands up for him against the ignorant and naïve student Potter. When Braithwaite cuts himself and Potter is shocked that he has red blood and his colour is only skin deep Pamela is angered, “What did you expect, fat boy? Ink?” This shows that Pamela is not racist and is disgusted by others ignorance. She is obviously a more mature student because her attitude towards racist comments is very educated and she creates smart and snappy arguments. “She was wonderful, tremendous in her scorn and towering anger”, Braithwaite is fascinated by this girls ability to voice her opinions, it touches on the themes of relationships. Pamela begins to fall for Braithwaite because her life may of lacked a male inspirational figure who was clean and tidy. So when she mets him, he is immediately attractive to her. Pamela stands up against racism on another occasion. On the train to a school trip, the class and Mr Braithwaite overhear some woman talk about Mr Braithwaite in a derogatory manner.
“Suddenly she turned to face them, her eyes blazing with anger. 'He is our teacher. Do you mind?' ”This shows that Pamela is a fearless character who is not afraid to

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