Visualisation & Characterisation

By Emilie A

Ma Costa

The author Philip Pullman, conveys the character Ma Costa throughout the book as a protective, yet sympathetic person. In the chapters 1-5, Pullman described Ma Costa as a stout powerful woman with grey hair. This gives us, the audience, a sense of realism as we now know that she isn't a young, feeble girl and the appearance is completely different which also tells us a few things about her personality.
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Later on around the middle of the book, Pullman wrote that 'there was real work to do and Ma Costa made sure she did it'. This is indirect characterisation and from a viewers perspective we can tell that Ma Costa is stubborn in a way where she wants to get things done quickly and will make sure it happens. Her personality is now formed in a more clearer way and at this point in the book, I can tell that Ma Costa is a fierce, wise, proud yet stubborn woman.
A little further on, Pullman describes the way that Ma Costa is walking up the stairs as if nothing in the world could stop her. Although this continues the idea of her being strong and stubborn, this can also be a positive step into her personality. I think that Pullman does this because it may make her a character that survives later on in the book or series because she is very strong.


Overall Ma Costa is a powerful woman with her own opinion and that is the way the Philip Pullman has conveyed her.