3.2 Modern texts and poetry

Modern texts

Students will study one from a choice of 12 set texts, which include post-1914 prose fiction and drama. Students should study the whole text.

Choose one of:




JB Priestley

An Inspector Calls

Willy Russell

Blood Brothers (musical version)

Alan Bennett

The History Boys Last exam 2024

Dennis Kelly


Simon Stephens

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (play script) Last exam 2024

Shelagh Delaney

A Taste of Honey

Chinonyerem OdimbaPrincess & The Hustler First teaching 2023
Winsome PinnockLeave Taking  First teaching 2023




William Golding

Lord of the Flies

AQA Anthology

Telling Tales

George Orwell

Animal Farm

Kazuo Ishiguro

Never Let Me Go Last exam 2024

Meera Syal

Anita and Me

Stephen Kelman

Pigeon English

Kit de WaalMy Name is Leon First teaching 2023


Students will study one cluster of poems taken from the AQA poetry anthology, Poems Past and Present. There is a choice of three clusters, each containing 15 poems. The poems in each cluster are thematically linked and were written between 1789 and the present day.

The titles of the three clusters are:

  • Love and Relationships
  • Power and Conflict
  • Worlds and Lives First teaching 2023

Students should study all 15 poems in their chosen cluster and be prepared to write about any of them in the examination.

Unseen poetry

In preparing for the unseen poetry section of the examination students should experience a wide range of poetry in order to develop their ability to closely analyse unseen poems. They should be able to analyse and compare key features such as their content, theme, structure and use of language.