Triumph and Despair

Number the paragraphs

I find this hard to write about because, technically, not much is happening. Still, here goes…

The initial caption, “triumph and despair”, presents a set of contrasts which embody what the story will be about. The headline introduces the idea of physical suffering and the subhead gives a summary of the entire story. The language throughout up to this point is emotive, yet gives hope of a happy ending: her chances were “almost destroyed” but not quite. Time is used to add poignancy to the story; she had been married “only a month” before her accident and was back on track “within six months”. This speed of rehabilitation shows her admirable determination. For some totally illogical reason, the closeness to her marriage of the accident heightens its emotional impact.

Paragraph 1 reminds us of this closeness in time and describes the weather. It is ironic that such an awful thing should happen on such a lovely day. This heightens the emotional tone of the piece.
This is a first person narrative, so we are given insight into Emma Davies Jones’ feelings and responses. In paragraphs 1&2 she tells us in simple terms what happened that day. No fancy language stuff is going on here. If anything, it’s quite understated: “very badly wrong” and “terrible” are not the most impactful descriptions imaginable!

Paragraph 3 takes us a little into her cycling history. Again, nothing fancy is going on.

Paragraphs 4&5 introduce facts and figures, the technicalities of her accident. The word “sliver” means tiny slice. It is ironic that such a tiny piece had such potential for damage, and that Emma Davies Jones was only saved from that damage by the chance knowledge of the passer by who knew how to behave around back injuries.
Paragraph 5 parallels the word “independent” with its opposite, “unable” to show the extent to which Emma Davies Jones’ life had changed.
What emotive line does Davies Jones use in this paragraph to show the depth of her despair?

The article ends on a positive note; the vocabulary has changed from the negatives of the beginning to something much more affirmative.
Find 4 examples of positive vocabulary in the final paragraph.

The picture which appears at the end of the article is the visual equivalent of the affirmative vocabulary just mentioned.

The Life facts provide a context in which we can fit the story.

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