Social Class In Educating Rita

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Educating Rita is a modern comedy play set in 1985 in Liverpool. It is the story of a young woman who wishes to learn English literature at university; it also explores the relationship she has with her tutor Frank throughout. When Rita is first introduced to us we learn that she is clearly of the working class, due to her constant use of slang, and that Frank belongs to the middle, bordering upper, class. The difference in their social norms creates interesting comedic atmosphere. It displays Rita wishing to break free from the working class constraints, and wanting to better herself, through gaining education whilst her tutor Frank wishes she would remain as she is. In addition, Rita’s brash exterior is comedic as it exaggerates her personality…show more content…
Rita’s entrance to Frank’s office is particularly loud and she forces open the door whilst yelling at the person who is almost a complete stranger to her. Following this, she then uses appropriate language for her social class, which is demonstrated when she looks at the painting in Frank’s office and says “look at those tits”. This also highlights inequality, another aspect of comedy, as we see Frank taken aback by her sexual remark, but he decides to ignore it and responds in a more mature and intelligent way. This difference in class demonstrates a sense of inequality and is very humorous; it accentuates how different they are, and how the interactions between them become very ridiculous at certain parts within this play. This occurs particularly at the moment when Frank asks for Rita’s name: “you are? What am I? Pardon? What?”. This very rapid interaction between both characters uses basic misunderstanding through the use of word play to create comedy and further highlight their class differences; within this scene they are almost speaking different dialects, which creates a confusing moment for both of them, resulting in more

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