This GCSE English Literature quiz looks at illustrating and supporting points in Lord of the Flies by William Golding. Writing good essays about literature requires the ability to use evidence from the text to support any points you make. Being able to use the text to back up your argument is what makes your writing persuasive. Quoting or paraphrasing from the text also demonstrates your knowledge and understanding. Although this skill is essential, it is definitely not easy. Like most skills, it improves with practise. In addition to choosing the most effective evidence, you will also need to pay attention to detail and punctuate accurately. This quiz is designed to test these important literary skills and is intended to be challenging. Can you identify the answers which have managed to use evidence correctly? In your own writing, don’t forget to follow up your quotation with explanation and analysis, too!
You should know the three key methods of using evidence from a text: paraphrasing, quoting single words or short phrases, and quoting longer sections of text. Each of these methods takes some practise in order to use it successfully. Rephrasing a section of the text in your own words, or paraphrasing, is the easiest to master. The art of paraphrasing is an essential skill for good writing. It also demonstrates your knowledge of the text. This skill can be very useful in closed-book exam situations.
The second method is to quote individual words or short phrases from the text in support of a point you make. You can memorise short, relevant quotations from the text in order to use them this way, although you should be careful not to use them in a way that makes no sense just because you’ve taken the time to memorise them! This method is especially good to use if you want to point out details of language choice. It takes a bit of practise to include quotations in essays well, and, as you improve, you might like to consider combining methods. For example, your writing becomes more flexible when you can mix paraphrase with short quotations in the same sentence. Practising combinations of methods will ensure that you avoid writing awkward, cluttered sentences.
The final method is to quote a full sentence or more. When a short phrase does not make sense or you are finding it difficult to incorporate a short quotation grammatically, this might be the best method to use. This is also a good choice when you wish to discuss the quotation in close detail.
Here is a useful tip for writing elegantly: avoid quoting single, ordinary words just to show that you have read the text. This really only demonstrates that a word has been copied from one place to another. Sometimes an ordinary word might be used in a significant way, in which case it should have quotation marks. For example, in Lord of the Flies, the fairly ordinary word “beast” becomes significant when the idea of it grows to such terrifying proportions in the boys’ imaginations. On all other occasions, exact phrases or sentences from the text should be enclosed in quotation marks.
Try this quiz on the best way to use evidence from Lord of the Flies. The aim of this quiz is to test your ability to quote and to paraphrase; your knowledge of the text is not being tested here. One helpful tip is that it might be easier to eliminate the incorrect answer first.