Wondering what the new HSC English Advanced Module A: Textual Conversations is all about?
Don’t worry we’ve got you covered with this ultimate guide to Module A: Textual Conversations!
What is the new HSC English Module A: Textual Conversations all about?
This new module, similar to the previous Module A, is a comparative study of texts.
You will study a pair of texts that share a direct intertextual relationship. You will examine what they have in common and also how they differ.
Each pairing is made of an earlier text and a more recent text that is either a retelling of, commentary on, or engagement with the older text.
This module is not completely just a contextual study of texts. Along with studying context and the effect of it on the text’s meaning and construction, you also need to explore content, themes and how the texts are made.
What does ‘Textual Conversations’ even mean?
A ‘textual conversation’ is a metaphor for texts that share a relationship made up of themes ideas, intertextuality and context.
The rubric is your key to unlocking all that this module is about. So read it through carefully. Highlight. Rewrite. Take Notes.
All questions you complete for this module will come from this rubric:
The Textual Conversations Rubric: In Plain English:
A “Comparative Study” means you’ll be looking at the similarities (resonances) and differences (dissonances) between and within the texts. Generally the differences are more prominent and more important.
In this module, you should be thinking about how composers reframe the ideas or concerns of the earlier text in the latter text. Explore whether the relationship works as an affirmation which ‘mirrors or aligns’ or instead does it collide.
You’ll also be required to examine the issues or themes, values, assumptions and perspectives within the texts and explore the influences on the composer’s text. Overt influences such as other texts, social and cultural values and beliefs which can all shape meaning.
“A considered personal perspective” is one of the main points in this rubric. So develop your critical thinking abilities and the process of independent thought. Express your interpretation and evaluation of the texts.
This module assesses your ability to analyse texts and various literary techniques. So you need to pay particular attention to higher order techniques of representation like motif and allusion.
What texts are studied in HSC English: Textual Conversations?
Here is a table of the pairs of texts that you could be asked to study from NESA.
|Text 1||Text 2||Themes for Textual Conversations|
|King Richard III; William Shakespeare||Looking for Richard, Al Pacino||- Power
- Appearance vs. Reality
- Villainy and anti-heroes
|The Tempest; William Shakespeare||Hag-Seed; Margaret Atwood||- Power
- The Other
|Mrs Dalloway, Virginia Woolf||The Hours; Stephen Daldry||- Consciousness
|The Stranger; Albert Camus||The Meursault Investigation; Kamel Daoud||- The Human Condition
- The Other
|John Donne: A Selection of His Poetry; John Donne||W;t; Margaret Edson||- The Human Condition
- The Purpose of Art
|The Complete Poems; John Keats||Bright Star; Jane Campion||- The Human Condition
- The Artistic Process
|Ariel; Sylvia Plath||Birthday Letters; Ted Hughes||- Relationships
- Mental Health
How will I be assessed for Module A: Textual Conversations?
There have been a few changes to how HSC English will be assessed with the new syllabus:
Based on the new guidelines for assessments, HSC English Advanced students will be given ONE internal assessment specifically for Module A: Textual Conversations.
As there is a cap of 4 internal assessments for HSC English, including the Trial HSC exam, only 3 modules will be formally assessed internally. This means that you may not have a formal essay assessment for Module A before the HSC Trial Exam, but it’s up to your school to decide what assessments you’ll receive internally.
In the HSC English Paper 2 exam, you’ll be formally assessed on Module A: Textual Conversations.
From the information provided by NESA, you’ll have one extended response question for your prescribed texts, which may or may not include a stimulus.
The Module A section of HSC English Paper 2 will be worth 20 marks and students should spend approximately 40 minutes on their response.
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Anna Dvorak graduated from High School in 2017 and is now studying a Bachelor of Communications, majoring in media, arts & production and journalism, at UTS. Alongside studying, Anna works as an Academic Coach & Mentor at Art of Smart while also doing freelance work. She is very passionate about the art of storytelling and helping people fulfil their potential. In her free time, you’ll find Anna working on her craft, reading, watching Netflix, somewhere outside or catching up on sleep.