Nooligan and Street Boy Essay

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Nooligan and Street Boy

The poems "Nooligan" by Roger McGough and "Street Boy" by Gareth Owen are two poems which both deal with the issue of teenage hooliganism, and both poets use language to create a vivid sense of character.
Although both deal with the same theme, there are many similarities and differences between the two.

"Nooligan" is about a boy who thinks he is really powerful and harsh but is actually an uneducated boy trying to be a real hooligan.
"Street Boy" is also about a hooligan except that he actually is more powerful and has a higher status than the inferior "Nooligan".

One of the main similarities is that both the poets present the characters as using slang language or some sort of incorrect form of
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Just you look at me man

Gareth has used that technique intentionally to characterize the street boy as an attention-seeker. "Street Boy" wants the reader to pay full attention to him and focus on him before starting the verse.
Furthermore, "Just you" is a type of a threatening phrase which just tells us about the kind of person he is, and how he bullies people.
Also the use of "man" at the end of each first line gives the boy more attitude and gives us the effect of hooliganism. In "Nooligan" the first line of each verse starts with "I'm a nooligan", the effect of this line is that instead of us thinking that the "Nooligan" is cool and tough, it makes us think the exact opposite.

There is another resemblance between the two poems and that is the use of rhyme. Both poems use the same rhyming scheme. "Nooligan" uses
ABCBD while "Street Boy" uses ABCB. The only difference is the last line of "Nooligan" which is in parenthesis and doesn't rhyme or fit with any of the other lines.

I'm the boss

(Well, one of them)

Roger McGough has done this deliberately to make the last line stand out, gives an anti-climax effect. That last line creates humor in the poem and shows the true personality of the "Nooligan". It tells the reader that he isn't actually what he's pretending to be. Not only that but the line in brackets always starts with "well".

One other obvious correspondence between the two poems is the actual
theme

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