Thursday, 19 January 2012

Reading and Reacting of Florence

4. Florence is set in the South during the late 1940s. How might the play be different if it were set in the North? If it were set today?

The play might be different if it were set in North because people at North are more open compared to the people in the South. They can accept the black people better than in South. The prejudice and discrimination towards the black people would not happened like in the South. 

If it were set today, there won't be any problem between the black and the white people. For example, the African-American nowadays have achieved much success just like the white people. Barrack Obama is one of the most successful people who represents the black people as a president.The white people are more open, and give more opportunities to the black people today so there won't be any discrimination.

5. In line 17, Marge tells Mama that she had better buy some food because she "can't go the diner." Then again in line 23, Marge says that Florence has "notions a Negro woman don't need." What situation is Marge alluding to? Find other references to this "situation" in the play.

Marge is alluding to the rights that the black people would not get. She says that her Mama had better bought some food because she disallowed to go to the diner. She probably can't even go to any restaurant to eat, as the place is only reserved for the white. 

"Notions that a Negro woman don't need" probably means that the Blacks should not have any desire to become a well-known actors or actresses as the black would not get that opportunity at all during that time.

6. Does Mrs.Carter think of herself as a racist? Do you agree with her assessment of herself?

In our point of view, our first impression of Mrs. Carter is that, she is not a racist because she does not allow Mama to call her 'Mam'. But after she starts talking about her brother's book, "Lost My Lonely Way", she begins to be a bit racist because she believes that being a black people is a big humiliation and a burden according to that book. We are saying that Mrs Carter being a racist because when Mama asked Mrs Carter to help Florence to become a well-known actress, in the beginning it seems like she is going to help her but at the end the job that she is saying about is to become a maid. Indirectly, it  shows that she is trying to say that black people suits that profession.

No, because she tried to make Florence as a maid although she knows Florence wants to become a well-known actress.

7. What causes Mama to disagree with Mrs. Carter about her brother's book? What does this disagreement tell the audience about both characters?

She disagree with Mrs.Carter because she thinks that the main character in the book was not supposed to commit suicide just because she ashamed of her skin color. She mentioned her cousin who is not ashamed being a black and worked in a shoe store. He never once wanted to kill himself. 

Both characters are determined to defend their own race. Mrs. Carter thinks that being black is a humiliation while Mrs. Whitney thinks the other way round. Mrs. Whitney defends her opinion that there is nothing to embarrass about being black.

8. Does Mama's view of Mrs. Carter change or remain the same as the plot develops? What does she learn that causes her to reject the "help" that Mrs. Carter offers?

·     Mama’s view of Mrs Carter change as the plot develops. This is because Mama thought that Mrs Carter will help her daughter to achieve her dream to become an aspiring actress. Mama asked Mrs Carter to help Florence because she knew Magma Rugby, a director who can help Florence to achieve her dream. Mrs Carter told Mama that, Magma always helps people who in need and this will be a great opportunity for Florence to develop her acting skill. But, when Mrs Carter said that Florence will be doing some light cleaning and a little cooking, Mama rejected Mrs Carter’s help because Mama knew Florence’s ability in acting and do not want Florence to do things that will destroy her dreams. 

    She learns that Mrs Carter is still being racist even though she spoke to Mama nicely. Mrs Carter still offered the lowest job to Florence even though she had heard from Mama on how good Florence was in acting.

9. What is Mama's opinion of her daughter at the beginning of the play? How does this view change by the end? In what way is Mrs. Carter responsible for this change?

·     In the beginning of the story, Mama wants to go to New York to bring Florence back. Mama does not want Florence suffered to find some money in New York. Florence wrote a letter telling that she does not have money to support herself. Marge, Florence’s sister also encourage Mama to bring Florence back because no other Black woman have a desire to be a successful actress except Florence. Marge also claimed that Florence will do not have any chance to be an actress. Mama was responsible to bring Florence back.         
      When Mama met Mrs Carter and asked for her help because Mrs Carter knew a great director, the chance for Florence to show her talent was wide open. 

      But Mrs Carter offered Florence the lowest job and made Mama disappointed. This is because Mama knew Florence ability in acting. She wanted Florence to succeed in her dream. This made Mama changed her mind to not bring Florence back but encourage Florence to pursue her dream to become a successful actress one day. She wanted Florence to prove that she can do it. Besides, Mama wrote a letter to Florence to encourage her to achieve her dream. She wrote “keep trying” to Florence in the letter.

    10. Although the play bears her name, Florence never appears on stage. In what sense is Florence nevertheless a character in the play? Why do you think Childress names the play for her?

·     Even though Florence never appears in the play, but she plays an important role. Mama has some argument with Mrs Carter because of Florence. Florence has made some ‘problems’ between Mama and Mrs Carter. Florence also made Mama want to come to New York. 

        In my opinion, Childress put ‘Florence’ as the title of the play because it symbolizes someone who dares to change her life. As we know, no other Black people want to change their life because of the Jim Crow law and their chance to develop themselves was so limited. But, Florence has a desire to be a successful actress and she really went to New York to make her dream comes true. She dares to take risks to achieve her dream. 

1   11. JOURNAL ENTRY Should Mama have confronted Mrs. Carter directly? What do you think would have happened had she done so?

    In my point of view, Mama has her right to do so because Mrs Carter seemed to humiliate Black community even though she was not a racist type of woman. Mrs Carter should not ask Florence to become a maid because she had heard Florence ability in acting from her mama. She should help Florence to develop her acting skill. 

      In the play, Mama didn’t confronted Mrs Carter because she doesn’t want bad things to happen. If Mama confronted Mrs Carter, the things will become so complicated and bad. Mama let this conversation fly over the time even though she really disappointed with Mrs Carter because she doesn’t help well. Besides, she offered Florence to become a maid even though she really knew that Florence wanted to become an actress.

      In my opinion, Mama should have confronted Mrs. Carter directly but by words, not action. This is because, during that time, black people are well noticed about the punishment that they will receive if they are being harsh to the white. 

      If she had done so, she might end up being jailed because her action to Mrs. Carter is probably against the law. However, by confronting Mrs. Carter, Mama might has change the view of the white people about the black people. Mrs. Carter probably would not look down at the black people anymore.
    In my point of view, Mama should not confront Mrs Carter directly, this is because during that time there is a Jim Crow law which is unfair to black people. Mama actions may cause her in difficulty.  I think Mama don't need too emotional by confronted Mrs Carter directly but Mama must wisely using her words to confront Mrs Carter. 

     Besides, if we are using words to confront with others it will make sense because through words we become more understand rather than action that might hurt and don't achieve any agreement.

F  Fatin

1   Mama should not confront Mrs. Carter directly. She is a black woman while Mrs. Carter is a white woman, means that Mrs. Carter’s race is more noble compared to Mama’s. If she confront directly, I think Mrs. Carter will take an action on her.

     12. CRITICAL PERSPECTIVE In an analysis of Alice Childress's work, Jeanne-Marie A. Miller says, "To Childress, however, the black woman is the most heroic figure to emerge in America." At the heart of Childress's plays, Miller notes, is an ordinary woman "whose life is uneventful until circumstances force her to rise to the fullness of her strength." According to Miller, "the black woman not only transcends her own predicaments but often functions as a catalyst for change in those whose lives she touches." How does Mama fit this characterization?

      Mama fits this characterization because Mama is the important role in the play. In the beginning of the play, she wanted to bring Florence back because she didn’t want Florence to suffer in New York. This is the prove that Mama loves her daughter very much. Even though she has no money to pay the rent, but she wanted to bring Florence back and change her daughter's life. She tried to make Florence’s life as good as well.
     When she met Mrs Carter, an English woman, she asked for her help because Mama saw a great opportunity for Florence. But, she disappointed with Mrs Carter because she ignored her request to see her daughter to become a successful actress. Apart from that, Mrs Carter also told  Mama about her brother’s book, “Lost My Lonely Way”. The book is about a Negro woman but she was in mixed blood so she looked more to white people. That woman commits suicide because she was confused of her identity. That makes Mama wanted Florence to prove to all people that she can be a successful actress if she have confidence towards it. Mama knew that her daughter has a talent to become an aspiring actress one day. That’s why Mama didn’t bring Florence back because she wanted Florence to change others' perspectives towards black people.
     The black woman not only transcends her own predicament but often functions as a catalyst for change in those whose lives she touches” –Miller
    That quote suits Mama's character because she is the main factor to make Florence as a successful actress. If Mama is still planning to bring Florence back, she is destroying her own daughter’s dream.

      Mama fit this characterization very well because she acts as a catalyst in her family. According to Miller, "The black woman not only transcends her own predicament but often functions as a catalyst for change in those whose lives she touches". Mama herself has a hard life in her hometown and she cannot pay the house rent. However, to avoid Florence suffered in New York, she used the money that she kept to pay for the house rent to buy train's ticket to New York. This shows that she transcends her own predicament. 
     Mama changed her daughter's life, Florence, by encouraging her to keep on pursuing her dream in becoming a well-known actress. She might also has changed Mrs. Carter views on black people. She said that being black is not a humiliation and people should not kill themselves just because of that. Some black people have proved themselves to the world that they are worth to be proud of. Everyone deserves chances to develop themselves. 

      Mama also taught us to be brave in giving our opinion. We should not let people's thought bring us down. Mama did not stay silent when Mrs. Carter comments about what black people should and should not be. She believes that everyone has their own ability.
     Mama suits well this characterization because she symbolized the strength of black woman to  become a back bone for her family. Although Mama herself faces with some difficulities but she manages to overcome the problems to give a convenient life for her family. For instance, she is willing to go to New York to meet Florence even though she is run out of money. 
     Then, at the end of the play Mama encourages Florence to proceed with her dream to become a main role in the play. This is shown that Mama starts to believe that black people also can successful but we must dare to take a challenge and start a step forward to it. What that I learnt from Mama is if we want to change other mind set of us we should show and prove to them about what we are saying. 
    In my view, to make Mrs Carter think out of her box about black people, Mama encourages Florence to achieve her dreams and prove to white people that black people also can be like white people even better.This is clearly shown that Mama is a catalyst of her family.

     Mama is such a strong person inside her. Maybe she looks weak from the outside but not from inside. Although most of white people look down on black people, but she, who is black, has no problem to face it. 
     For example, when Mrs. Carter mention about her brother’s book, she told about the heroine, Zelma who is black and commit suicide just because she cannot accept that she is Negro. When Mama heard this, she felt so disappointed and stood up and told Mrs. Carter that was not true. She never thinks of commit suicide just because she is black, and she knew she will never do that. Then, she mentioned about all the black people who she knows who are proud of being black. Here, it shows she is strong enough to face white people stereotype thinking about black people.  White people always think that black people feel so disappointed just because they are black.

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Reflections on Designing the Cover for Florence

What was my role in the designing of the book cover?
Was my opinion taken seriously by the others? Why?
What have I learnt from this task?

1)      My role in the designing of the book cover is to give my ideas for the design of the book cover among of my group members. I also contribute my thoughts in choosing the illustrations.
2)      When my lecturer told us that we have to design the book cover of Florence, my ideas were so many. I quickly grabbed my pencil to sketch and told my group members that I have the ideas to design it. Yes, my opinion was taken seriously by them. And we continued our task in our hostel .I admit that I don’t have any skill to use computer as a medium to design it.  And I let my other group members to design it. I just gave my thoughts when needed. We just modify a little bit of my illustration and the outcome was fabulous. My group members have their own ability in designing the book cover and I was really thankful to them because they gave their 100% commitment in designing it even though we were so tired on that night.
3)      What I have learnt from this task is we need to respect each other opinions. Who knows maybe some weird ideas can make such a wonderful outcome. For us, we came up so many weird ideas and just look to the outcomes. It such marvellous books cover. Apart from that, we also need to be creative as we can because creativity is the most important elements in designing. Creativity also differs ones thought to another. Creativity that we have will able us to think deeper than others. In addition, we need to tolerate among of group members. Toleration is the important things that we need when we gather in groups. If we miss that element, the understanding in one thing cannot be achieved. Discussing is the best way to achieve the understanding among of the group members. 


What was my role in the designing of the book cover? 
Was my opinion taken seriously by the others? Why? 
What have I learnt from this task? 

1) My role in designing the book cover is to contribute ideas on how the book cover should look. I also need to discuss with my group members on colors that are suitable for for the cover.

2) I told the other members about my ideas and then we discuss further on it. Some of my ideas are useful and accepted and some need to be improved more. Everyone in the group has our own way of thinking and ways to make things work out so a lot of thoughts from different people must be taken into consideration so that the outcome would be awesome. 

3) I learnt that creative thinking is needed in order to have work done successfully. Also, team work is very important to make sure that each of the group members contribute their thoughts and efforts for the task given. Being responsible about our own task is necessary because, as we work in group, everyone must think about the benefit that the group will achieved by conducting a successful work. 

- Izzah -


  • -       Overall, my role in the designing of the Florence book cover is in contributing the ideas. I had gave some ideas which I share with them is using two pictures as the main cover. The main picture is the New York statue which symbolizes New York as the place where Florence wanted to achieve her dream. For the railway station, we make it look misty so you can see that both pictures are related. I also helped to contribute the pictures.

  • -       Absolutely yes, this is because every member in our group gave their own brilliant ideas. For your information we take all others ideas seriously to produce an absolutely amazing cover book for the Florence drama. Besides, we have to variety our ideas in order to satisfy all the members in our group because everyone had their own idea, so we combined all the ideas and the outcome is worth it.

  • -       I learnt a lot from this task and I happily doing this task.. This task also helped me to gain my interest in learning literature. Moreover, by doing this task we become more creative and our brain start working to think out of the box. Everyone gave their best to make the task successfully done and we worked hard till the end. For me, team work and the responsibility is the most important. Lastly, we also strive for the best to compete with other groups which also have so many talented ides and we should tolerant among members.



  1. All of the group members were trying their best on doing this project.  My role in designing the book cover was designing the book cover in laptop. My group members gave their ideas and opinions and also the materials, for example the pictures of railway station. They gave their opinions and I was the one who was editing the book cover picture. I used a very basic photo editor to design the cover. I enjoyed editing the cover because editing pictures is one of my favorite activities and I learned editing pictures when I was in secondary. After a long time, I didn’t edit any pictures till now only I had the chance to do it again. Cropping, darken, blooming the picture are some of the editing that I did on the picture.

                2. Some of my opinions were taken seriously by the others. This is because while I was editing the picture, I gave some ideas which can make the picture looks better than before.  I gave the idea on the brightness of the picture. Florence is a story which the setting was in 40’s so the color of the picture must be a bit blooming. They agree with me because the picture really look suit the time.

                3. I learnt that designing a book cover is not an easy task. We must sit together and think to figure out on how to make a nice book cover.  While we were discussing on it, we asked lot of questions to ourselves. For example, if we choose to use white color as the background, we must have the reason why we pick the color. From that, I learnt that everything that we do, we must have a reason for it. At least, one reason. 


Friday, 6 January 2012

Blog Task

"My thoughts on Drama"

1. I would be willing to spend my money watching an excellent play because I would love to have at least an experience watching a real play. I have never watched a play before. This would be helpful for me to get knowledge on how drama is being act. It is also important for my study as I am studying about drama. 

2. I expect a good play would have a beautiful plot and of course a satisfying ending to the viewers. I hope the actors could play their roles properly in the play.

3. I don't feel good to act in a play because I don't know much on how to act. However, I will study more on acting and will try my best if I'm being asked to act in a play someday.  

- Izzah-


1)Would I be willing to spend my money watching an excellent play/drama? Why?

2)What do I expect from a good play?

3)Do I feel comfortable to act in a play? Why?

-Yes, because an excellent play or drama will widen my perspectives about the play. All this time, I have never watch play and if someday I will be given a great chance to watch it, I will go. Furthermore, an excellent drama or play has their own uniqueness and creativity. So, I have to watch different genre of drama or play to explore more about it. As I will be learning about dramas and plays in this semester, I need to have passion about it.

-The flow of the story will attract many people to watch it. The director of the play should be as creative as they can because nowadays, they are so many cliché storyline. The people will get bored if they watched the same storyline even though different titles because they need some fresh story to watch. Apart from that, the main characters in the play also play a main role to make the play excellent. They need to act as best as their can to make the audience impressed of their performances. The prop and sets on the stage also will make the play as good as others.

- No, I will not feel comfortable to act in a play because I am not good in acting. Maybe, I have some problems to memorise the script. I think if I act in any of the play, I will make the play miserable and the audience will say that I have destroyed the whole of the play. I don’t want that happen. But, if I have given the chance to act, I will make it as best as I can because I don’t any bad thoughts from the audience.In this semester I will learn some of the drama and for sure, we need to act to feel the experience and I will grab the opportunities to act well.



  • 1.       Overwhelmingly yes, this is because I have lack of knowledge about drama or play. So I must add on and gain more knowledge about an excellent drama so I will be more understand about the drama. Besides that, the actor or actress definitely will give their 100% effort to make us entertain by watching their acting. In directly it is benefits for us to watch an excellent drama as we are studying about it.

  • 2.       I have a high expectation from a good play. The most important is I hope the plot or the story line is remarkable and easily to understand. Then, all the actors and actresses surely must have a good skill to make the character live so we as the audience can feel the aura that the actor trying to deliver. Moreover, the costumes play a big role to make the drama successfully done.

  • 3.       I do feel uncomfortable to act in play. This is not because I don’t have any courage to take the challenge it is because I don’t have an experience how to act. If I was given a chance to act in drama I will put an effort and give 100% commitment to give my best. In directly if we act in drama we also can learn how to produce a good drama and can have better understand about the drama.



1. I will definitely say yes. For some people, they might think that spending their money on drama/play is a waste, but actually it isn't. As long as the drama is excellent and good, it is really worth. Excellent play gives a wonderful satisfaction. When people spend their money on any play or drama, they will expect to see a drama which can give them a satisfaction on it. I want to feel that satisfaction. Besides, an excellent drama can entertain myself and release my stress. Other than that, I can learn something new from a drama.

2. I am a person which love comedy and also action. Fantasy is great too. Different play, different expectation. If people said that there is a drama which is very excellent, means that I will have a very high expectation on it. I expect not to see any mistakes although if it is just minor mistake in a drama. Forget the scripts, bad plot and others are the mistakes that I hope I won't see on any play. I really hope that the actors and actresses are excellent and act with a very high level confident so that people will enjoy their performance. Not just that, the plot also must be interesting. I hope that the plot can give an impact not just to me, but also to the other audience. Finally, I hope to see a little bit of humor elements in a play. 

3. I don't think so that I will comfortable to act in a play. This is because whenever it comes to drama practice, I can memorize the script really well, but when it comes to perform in front of people, I will easily forget the script because I'm quite afraid to act or to perform in front of the crowd. Acting needs 100% confident level, 100% commitment and also 100% feel. I don't think so that I can give that much to act but if I got a chance to act, I hope that I can do well.

^Fatin Syazana^