English GCSEs: a list of authors, poets & playwrights you are unlikely to see

After the outcry when the new English GCSEs were announced Education Secretary Michael Gove has clarified things by letting us know that no authors have been banned.

No, beyond a set of core requirements, exam boards have no restrictions on their choice of authors.

The Deaprtment of Education added that ‘…the requirements represent “only the minimum pupils will be expected to learn” and that exam boards could still include modern writers from outside the British Isles…

The AQA board conceded that ‘…technically it would not be impossible to add additional texts beyond the essential requirements, to do so would place an unacceptable assessment burden on teachers and students

This is an incomplete list of authors, poets & playwrights that you are unlikely to encounter in English GCSEs

  • Amy Tan The Joy Luck Club
  • Arthur Miller The Crucible
  • Athol Fugard Tsotsi
  • Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie A Purple Hibiscus
  • Chinua Achebe Things Fall Apart
  • Doris Pilkington Rabbit-proof Fence
  • Dylan Thomas
  • Emily Dickinson
  • F Scott Fitzgerald The Great Gatsby
  • Harper Lee To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Haruki Murakami
  • John Steinbeck Of Mice and Men
  • Lloyd Jones Mr Pip
  • Mark Twain
  • Maya Angelou I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
  • Robert Frost
  • Robert Lowell
  • Roddy Doyle Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha
  • Stephen Crane
  • Sylvia Plath
  • Tennessee Williams
  • TS Eliot
  • WB Yeats
  • William Faulkner
  • So, yes it is all good from here on out! bannings, only relegation to the sidelines where they can be added to the curriculum if time and teaching allows.

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