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Sylvia Plath: A Brilliant but Tortured 20th Century American Poet
One of America's best known twentieth century poets, Sylvia Plath (1932-1963) lived an artistically productive but tragic life, and committed suicide in 1963 while separated from her husband, the British poet Ted Hughes. Before her death at age 30, Sylvia Plath had suffered a bout of severe depression for several months, the likely result of her separation from Ted Hughes and her strong suspicion of his adultery with the English poet Assia evill ("Sylvia Plath"; "Sylvia Plath, 1932-1963" 2). Sylvia Plath had also made several previous suicide attempts, beginning at age 20, or perhaps even earlier, always precipitated by the spells of depression and debilitating self-doubt that dogged the poet from early adolescence on (Neurotic Poets, Sylvia Plath 6-7). As Plath wrote, in her autobiographical novel The Bell Jar, published in January 1963, less than a month before her suicide,…
Plath, Sylvia. The Bell Jar. New York: Harper and Row, 1971.
- -- . "Daddy." Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama. Ed. X.J.
Kennedy and Dana Gioia. 4th Compact Ed. New York, Longman,, 2005. 830.
- -- . "Lady Lazarus." Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama. Ed. X.J.
Sylvia Plath's Daddy
Any attempt to interpret a work of literature by a writer as prolific, as pathological, as tormented and as talented as Sylvia Plath requires a good deal of caution. A lot of Path's work is biographical -- one might successfully argue that the vast majority of the work of virtually any author is biographical to a certain extent. For Plath, however, this association between art and life, poetry and reality, is of particular interest to a number of readers due to her deep rooted depression, the climactic end of her life, and the angst and success she frequently experienced while living. Perhaps the poem that single-handedly addresses all of these fascinating components of Plath's life and work is "Daddy." One of the most notable things about this particular piece is that the author expresses extreme hatred towards a male -- perhaps more than one male -- in…
Materer, Timothy. "Sylvia Plath." American Novelists Since World War II: Fourth Series. Ed. James R. Giles and Wanda H. Giles. Detroit: Gale Research, 1995. Dictionary of Literary Biography Vol. 152. Literature Resource Center. Web.
Mclanahan, Thomas. "Sylvia Plath." American Poets Since World War II. Ed. Donald J. Greiner. Dictionary of Literary Biography Vol. 5. Detroit: Gale Research, 1980. Literature Resource Center. Web.
"Overview: 'Daddy'." Poetry for Students. Vol. 28. Detroit: Gale. 2008. Literature Resource Center. Web.
"Introduction to Plath, Sylvia (1932-1963)." Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. Ed, Kathy D. Darrow. Vol. 252. Detroit: Gale, 2011. Artemis Literary Sources. Web.
There were also a few children's books by Sylvia Plath that there publish which include: "The ed ook" (1976), "The It-Doesn't-Matter'Suit" (1996), "Collected Children's Stories" (2001), and "Mrs. Cherry's Kitchen" (2001).
In conclusion, Sylvia Plath is a great American poet, short story writer, novelist, and essayist that provided the world with many great poems, short stories, prose and essays. For most of her short life, she suffered from clinical depression, which is very evident in many of her written pieces. She used writing as a way to release her depressed feelings, but it was not enough to prevent her from committing suicide in 1963 at the young age of 30. It has been through the efforts of her mother, her husband and her children that many of her written pieces have been able to be shared with the world. She was a great writer, but depression not only ended the…
1. Hayman, Ronald. The Death and Life of Sylvia Plath. London, Mebourne, Auckland, and Heinemann, 1991.
2. Wagner-Martin, Linda. Sylvia Plath: A Literary Life. London:Palgrave Macmillan, 1999.
3. The Sylvia Plath Homepage. July 13, 2006 www.sylviaplath.de
4. Stevenson, Anne. Bitter Frame: A Life of Sylvia Plath. Mariner Books, 1995.
Sylvia Plath's poem "Tulips," the speaker is a sick woman in bed in hospital. She weaves in and out of a drug-induced sleep, and much of the poem reads like a hallucinogenic stupor. The reader perceives the hospital room through the speaker's eyes, which focus especially on the colors white and red. White represents the peace and calm of snow, winter, nurse's caps, and purity. The red of the tulips symbolize tension, anxiety, interference, and possibly also death. Although the speaker does not die at the end of the poem, the theme of "Tulips" is the fine line between life and death and the centrality of health to personal identity.
The speaker straddles the fine line between life and death throughout the poem. She uses the word "slip" to show that she slips in and out of consciousness. The reader never learns exactly why the speaker is in the hospital,…
The eade must seach fo the theme of the poem, and only fom leaning about Plath's own life can ascetain that the subject. Plath's esoteic efeences ae less accessible than Lincoln's musings about suicide, death, and hell. Howeve, both Plath and Lincoln do diectly mention death in thei poems. Lincoln's naato mentions in line two of "Suicide's Soliloquy" his "cacass" and then in line thee, the "buzzads" that "pick my bones." Likewise, in the second and thid lines of "Edge," Plath descibes "He dead / Body."
Both poets focus on physical motality with gaphic desciptions of dakness and despai. Both also weave imagey of life and death to ceate complexity and lue the eade. Plath's subject matte is a dead woman who "weas the smile of accomplishment" afte he death (line 3). Yet he life is "ove" and efeences to blood and bones povide mobid motifs. Lincoln's fist-peson naato is…
references to hell are anachronistic in the 21st century, whereas Plath's juxtaposition of life and death seems more modern. Both poems offer challenging and deeply personal insights into tricky topics like death, psychological suffering, and suicide.
The poem "Daddy" thus chronicles a personal misery that is shared by all of Europe, bleeding its collective wounds of guilt at the end of orld ar II. This sense of the personal and the impersonal becoming melded into poetry is what gives "Daddy" its power. Everyone, not just everyone with a personal, historical family connection to the Holocaust can understand the speaker. She is everywoman, and perhaps everyone who has had a self-defeating, masochistic relationship with someone in the present, because she or he is still emotionally living in the past, replaying an old childhood drama.
Plath's complicated relationship with parenting, and her inability to fully trust or inhabit a healthy relationship is also seen in "Morning Song," which depicts a mother rising to comfort a crying baby. Unlike the relationship of "Daddy," the mother and child seem to have a normal bond -- the mother wakes to comfort…
Plath, Sylvia. "Daddy." Full text available October 8, 2009 at http://www.internal.org/view_poem.phtml?poemID=356
Plath, Sylvia. "The Moon and the Yew Tree." Full text available October 8, 2009 at http://www.angelfire.com/tn/plath/yew.html
Plath, Sylvia. "Morning Song." Full text available October 8, 2009 at http://www.poets.org /viewmedia.php/prmMID/15293' target='_blank' REL='NOFOLLOW'>
Daddy by Sylvia Plath: An Explication
At first glance, Sylvia Plath's "Daddy" seems like the ranting of an adolescent breaking away from an oppressive parent.
In fact, on one level, this poem is a poetic tirade directed at a father who is the source of considerable pain, but Plath has loftier goals than adolescent angst for this poem. The narrator in "Daddy" is actually a 30-year-old woman and presumably the voice of Sylvia Plath. This poem, like much of Plath's poetry, is autobiographical. In fact, Ariel,1 the collection that includes "Daddy," is an autobiographical collection of poetry that describes Plath's life leading up to her suicide. In "Daddy" she attempts to connect the intensely personal suffering of a woman (Plath) who never recovered from the death of her father to a more universal suffering, whether it's between father and daughter, husband and wife or tyrant and captive.
The poem opens…
Bundtzen, Lynda K. Plath's Incarnations: Woman and the Creative Process. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1983
Bundtzen, Lynda K. The Other Ariel. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2001
Muller, Gilbert H. Introduction to Literature. McGraw-Hill, 1994
Plath, Sylvia. Ariel. New York: Harper & Row Publishers, 1961
The childhood terror and intimidation caused by the paternal image is illustrated by her association with Nazi persecution of Jews. The rejection of her brutal and life-denying father is opposed to her love and admiration for him: "Bit my pretty red heart in two. / I was ten when they buried you/.At twenty I tried to die / and get back, back, back to you."
The tone of the poem is another important element in the overall lyrical body; it is based on constructing a voice that changes throughout the poem from unpleasant and rebellious to proud to murderous. These shifts in tone generate shift in the general mood of the poem in the sense that she manages to recover long lost feelings of resentment and pain from her childhood and to express them in the context of her state of mind when writing the poem, i.e. during adulthood. It…
M.D. Uroff, "Sylvia Plath and Confessional Poetry: A Reconsideration." Iowa Review 1977: Vol. 8, No. 1. pp. 104-15. Literature Research Center. Gale Group. http://www.sylviaplath.de/plath/uroff.html
Plath, Sylvia. Daddy. Online text available at: http://www.internal.org/view_poem.phtml?poemID=356
Wagner-Martin, Linda; Stevenson, Anne. "Two Views on Silvia Plath's Life and Career." The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Poetry in English, 1994. Rpt. In Modern American Poetry. http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/poets/m_r/plath/twoviews.htm
ut she knows he is dead, apparently, is the impression I get when she spends her hours "married to shadow" and no longer listens "for the scrape of a keep on the blank stones of the landing." Does "married to shadow" to mean her actual marriage isn't working well? Or that she is in a dark place due to her dad's passing, and she must observe the living world from the point-of-view of a kind of living death?
Was there an overall theme to the book of poems? In a way she seems to be conveying a rebellion against the world, against her life, and there are death and dying images throughout the book. She rebels against her piano lessons ("The Disquieting Muses") though she was "tone-deaf" and "unteachable"; she rebels against love ("Love is the bone and sinew of my curse" she writes in "The Stones").
What kind of…
Plath, Sylvia. The Colossus & Other Poems by Sylvia Plath. New York: Vintage Books,
Mirror" by Sylvia Plath
Sylvia Plath, in her poem, "Mirror," uses a number of devices to bring across to the reader her theme. The title for example serves to give the reader an initial idea of the theme, and indeed this appears to be substantiated by the rest of the text. Nonetheless, there is also a deeper, more emotional theme that emerges towards the later lines of the poem. Thus, Plath uses devices such as symbolism, imagery and contrast in order to explicate the theme of reality and emotion as they are intertwined with the mirror on the wall of an aging woman.
The first lines of the poem then begin to explicate the role of the mirror from a purely factual, realistic point-of-view. This is substantiated by the material symbolism of the mirror: it is made of glass, which is "silver and exact" (line 1), showing everything "Just as…
Plath speaks of this state as winter, "scrupulously austere in its order" in which the girl is completely in control of her own feelings and not tempted to experience sexual pleasure, her "heart's frosty discipline exactly as a snowflake." A snowflake is an apt metaphor for a spinster, a woman separate and unattached, not moved or controlled by another person (and particularly not by a man), a snowflake drifting.
In the fourth stanza the girl definitely feels tempted by "a burgeoning" of sexual desire that affects her physical senses ("her five queenly wits"). "Vulgar motley" represents allowing sexual feelings to take over uncontrolled. The girl sees this state as "A treason not to be borne" or her body working against her rationality. Society (and her mother, perhaps) has told her only fools allow men to have their way, that women who have sex before marriage become society's pariahs. So the…
Sylvia Plath's "Daddy," written on October 12, 1962 and posthumously published in 1965's Ariel, is one of the author's most well-known poems, though it may be considered one of her most controversial. Plath's vivid description and use of the Holocaust imagery to draw parallels to her relationship with her father, Otto Plath, a German immigrant who passed away shortly after Plath's eighth birthday, and her husband Ted Hughes. In "Daddy," Plath expresses her frustration at her father and how he has inadvertently defined her future relationships with men.
It has been speculated that "Daddy" deals with Plath's deep attachment to her father's memory and how it had affected her life. Plath, herself, described that the poem was about "a girl with an Elektra complex." "Daddy, I have had to kill you./You died before I had time -- " may be an indication that Plath is trying to move…
MacGowan, Christopher. Twentieth-Century American Poetry. Malden, MA: Blackwell
Plath, Sylvia. "Daddy." Accessed 3 December 2010.
That sums up her mother's life to her, and she does not want the same life for herself.
Another interesting aspect of the novel is Esther's relationship with men, many of whom represent her missing father in one way or another. Her relationship with Constantin and most of the other men in the novel is platonic, and she trusts these men with certain aspects of her personality. She "sleeps" with Constantin, but does not have sex with him, like a father figure. Dr. Gordon is also a man she can look up to like a father, but like most of the men in the novel, he is totally disinterested in Esther herself. All of these men represent her missing father, because her relationship with them is not romantic, and she confides in some of them as she would a father. Even Buddy's father acts as a father figure, and says…
Plath, Sylvia. The Bell Jar. New York: Bantam Books, 1971.
Eventually, Esther sneaks into the cellar with a bottle of sleeping pills -- prescribed to her for the insomnia she was experiencing, without any other real attempts to understand or solve the underlying problems of her mental upset -- having left a note for her mother saying she was taking a long walk. Esther then swallows as many of the pills as she is able, and it appears to be several days (it is never conclusively stated in the text) before she is found and taken to the hospital, where she awakens to learn that she has yet again been unsuccessful.
Following her physical convalescence, Esther is subjected to electroconvulsive therapy, which she notes has a soothing effect on her depression. Things begin to look somewhat better for Esther; she is being well-cared for at a private hospital paid for by a rich benefactress and admirer of Esther's work. The…
Buell, Frederick. "Sylvia Plath's Traditionalism." Boundary 2-5(1) (1976), pp. 195-212.
Gilson, Bill. "Biography of Sylvia Plath." Accessed 3 April 2010. http://www.poemhunter.com/sylvia-plath/biography/
Liukonnen, Petri. "Sylvia Plath." Accessed 3 April 2010. http://www.kirjasto.sci.fi/splath.htm
Plath, Sylvia. The Bell Jar. New York: Harper, 2000.
Plat as well as an examination of two of er poems. Tere were tree sources used to complete tis paper.
Sylvia Plat spent er sort adult life as a writer. Her works are eld up today as classic pieces of poetry and literature and examined for teir undercurrents as well as teir meanings. Plat was born in 1932 to a professor fater of German descent and an American moter wose parents were of Austria. Her fater ad migrated to te states wen e was 15 years old and e met er moter at a German class tat se took in later years. He was te teacer, se was te student and teir union ended in marriage and te birt of Sylvia (Sylvia Plat (ttp://victorian.fortunecity.com/plat/500/bio2.tm).
Plat was an overaciever er entire life. Se skipped grades in scool and won onors bot academically and socially in er ig scool ventures.…
Plath, Sylvia. In Plaster. (paperback Books, 1990).
Plath, Sylvia. Mirror. (Paperback Classics 1990).
At twenty I tried to die
And get back, back, back to you.
I thought even the bones will do. (51-60)
These lines allow us to see the poet dealing with her anger and the final thought is equally powerful when the poet tells her father, " Daddy, daddy, you bastard, I'm through" (110). The anger, unlike her father, lives and that might be the most agonizing aspect of the poem. There is no way for the poet to escape these emotions.
Anne Sexton and Sylvia Plath are poetic geniuses that cut their fame and their lives short. hile many would like to contend that neither poet would have been as popular had they lived, this is simply not the case. Their poetry stands alone because, ore than anything, it is real. Sexton and Plath were not ashamed of facing their feelings and presenting them in a realistic way. Both…
Berman, Jeffrey. Surviving Literary Suicide. Boston: University of Massachusetts Press. 1999.
Kumin, Maxine. Introduction: The Complete Poems of Anne Sexton. Boston: Houghton Mifflin
Plath, Sylvia. "Daddy." Norton Anthology of American Literature. 7th Ed. Vol. E. Byam, Nina,
Apparently Plath wrote the poem during her stay in the hospital, which can be a depressing place notwithstanding all the nurses and orderlies dressed in white. The appendectomy followed a miscarriage that Plath had suffered through, so given those realities in the poet's life -- especially for a woman to lose a child she had been carrying -- one can identify with the bleak nature of the poem. Confronted with the birth that turned out to be death, and then a painful appendectomy, the tulips are used as something of an abstraction and the redness of them gives her pain because it "corresponds" to the wound in her body from the surgery.
The opening stanza's first few lines seem rather peaceful and restful: "The tulips are too excitable, it is winter here / look how white everything is / How quiet, how snowed-in / I am learning peacefulness / lying…
Brower, Reuben a. (1963). The Poetry of Robert Frost: Constellations of Intention. New York:
Dobbs, Jeannine. 1977. "Viciousness in the Kitchen: Sylvia Plath's Domestic Poetry.
Modern Language Studies, 7(2).
Frost, Carol. (2012). Sincerity and inventions: On Robert Frost. Poets. Retrieved May 3,
oman Loves her Father, Every oman Loves a Fascist:
The Politics and Poetics of Despair in Plath's "Daddy"
Sylvia Plath is one of the most famous poets to emerge in the late 20th century. Partially due to the success of her autobiographical novel The Bell Jar, which details her partial recovery from suicidal depression, Plath's poetry has been frequently analyzed through the lens of her clinical mental problems. "Dying is An Art," the critic George Steiner titles of his essay on Plath, referring not only to a line from her poem "Lady Lazarus" but the critical elision of the poet's personal suicidal depression with the source of her confessional poetic gift. For instance, Plath's masterpiece, "Daddy," is a dramatic monologue in the voice of a German woman whose father was a Nazi. Yet despite the 'assumed' nature of "Daddy's" voice and the apparent divergence of poet from the speaker, the…
Plath, Sylvia. "Daddy." From The Norton Introduction to Literature Edited by Jerome
Beaty, et. al. Eighth Edition.
Plath, Sylvia. The Bell Jar. Harper & Row, 1971.
Howe, Irving. "The Plath Celebration: a Partial Dissent." From The Norton Introduction to Literature Edited by Jerome Beaty, et. al. Eighth Edition.
The almanac symbolizes the passing of time or life. As a result, it cannot help but point to death and bring forth tears. e see this alluded to with the child's drawing, as the man wears "tear like buttons" (29), symbolizing all that has passed. The almanac is crying but those tears are also nourishing in that they are preparing the child for the next phase in her life. The recurring tears point to the fact that death is not far for the grandmother. Here we see death hiding about in almost every aspect of the daily activities of life, reminding us that it is always around the corner.
In "A Certain Lady," Dorothy Parker utilizes symbolism to make an ironic point. The symbols in this poem point to the traditional ones we associate with love and lovers. The poet tells her lover that she will "drink your rushing words…
Bishop, Elizabeth. "Sestina." Textbook. City Published: Publisher. Year Published.
Parker, Dorothy. "A Certain Woman." Textbook. City Published: Publisher. Year Published.
Plath, Sylvia. "Daddy." Textbook. City Published: Publisher. Year Published.
Sympathy," "Digging," "For A Lady I Know," and "Metaphors" are examples of poems that exemplify and uses poetic elements in order to capture the message the poet wants the reader of the poem to achieve. In essence, this paper will talk about the poetic elements and use of persona, speaker, and voice to interpret and understand the message of the poems that have been mentioned. "Sympathy" by Paul Lawrence Dunbar is an example of a poem that uses the power of dual persona in order for the poet to express his feelings. "Sympathy" also illustrates the poet's strong feelings about freedom through the tone of his voice in every line delivered in the poem. Dunbar makes use of dual persona effectively when he assumes the role of both the poet (the speaker) and the role of an individual similar to the plight and feelings of "a caged bird." Dunbar through…
ilfred Owen's poem "Dulce et Decorum est" describes the horrors of orld ar One. ith rich imagery, the poet refers to the gory and horrid details of the "great war," such as "the blood / Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs, / Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud," and "watch the white eyes writhing in his face, / His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin." Owen's commentary comes directly from personal experience, as the poet served as a soldier in orld ar One. Having witnessed the devastation and death he describes in "Dulce Decorum Est," the poet challenges the popular assumptions of war's glory, honor, and necessity. The title of the poem comes from a Latin phrase meaning "It is sweet and right." The phrase was often used in reference to the First orld ar, to promote morale among soldiers. Owen concludes that the phrase is truly…
Written in 1926, William Butler Yeats' "Sailing to Byzantium" focuses not on war but on aging, death, and immortality. Through colorful, almost mystical imagery, Yeats describes the city of Byzantium through its glorious works of art, paintings that will stand the test of time. Yeats contrasts the immortal beauty of the works of art with the mortal decay of human flesh: "An aged man is but a paltry thing, a tattered coat upon a stick."
The poem "Dinner Guest: Me" by Langston Hughes describes the racial divide in America, and Hughes writes from an African-American perspective. The poem takes place around a dinner table in which the white hosts entertain a black guest, bombarding him with questions, "the usual questions / That come to white mind / Which seeks demurely / To Probe in polite way / The why and wherewithal / Of darkness U.S.A." In spite of their high-minded intellectual probing, the narrator of the poem cannot help but notice that "Solutions to the Problem, / Of course, wait. In spite of well-meaning discourse on racial equality, the problems associated with racism still exist in America and the gap between white and black remains large.
Sylvia Plath's poem "Daddy" describes anger and rage associated with mental and physical oppression. While Plath seems to focus on her relationship with her father, her rage extends also to her relationship with her husband, "The vampire who said he was you / And drank my blood for a year, / Seven years." The narrator relates all forms of oppression to the Nazi slaughter of the Jews. The intensity of the poet's emotions culminated in Plath's killing herself at age 30.
Death of the Ball Turret Gunner by Randall Jarrell Without knowing that a ball turret is small place in a B-17, we would not understand the central metaphor analogizing the mother's womb to the ball turret, which is essential to understanding that the poem is about the contrast between the warmth of a mother's love and the cold dehumanizing treatment of the "State" where he is just another soldier.
Common Ground by Judith Cofer Before reading the poem, the title seemed quite self-explanatory, I figured the poem would be about finding common ground between people, and in a sense it is, but the message, after reading the poem, is much starker. It is more about the inescapability of aging, the common links that tie generations as the young get old and realize the commonalities they share with their parents.
Hazel Tells LaVerne by Katharyn Machan Knowing the fairy tale helps…
Indeed, they are both supporter of Communism and here we are already talking about the mature period of Communist in its fight against the Imperialists (certainly, these are the same imperialists that would have paid Rivera for painting Rockefeller Centre) and the meeting between the couple and Trotsky is defining for the late phase of their relationship.
Artistic practices and values
Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath and Frida and Diego are extremely relevant for this category. First of all, Frida and Diego are members of the artistic community of Mexico and not only (and we are referring here to their presence in France during a time of artistic effervescence, as well as to their trip in the United States), this is the community that influences them and from where they draw their identity as artists. Additionally, it is their art that pulls them together each time the fall apart on…
1. Cleopatra VII - Ptolemaic Dynasty. On the Internet at http://www.pcf-p.com/a/m/rig/rig.html.Last retrieved on December 11, 2006
Cleopatra VII - Ptolemaic Dynasty. On the Internet at
All of this had been made possible due to the fact that with every man, or every ten men or every million people killed by the Nazis, the prisoner community only grew stronger and more indifferent to the thought of dying.
A reason for why Plath chose to refer to the Holocaust in her poem would be that she considered the occurrence to be one of the worst acts of violence done by man. Thus she would relate to the Holocaust in her poem to present people with the passion of her feelings at the time.
Nevertheless, with all the brave people who stood strong when others would have run and hide, Plath shows that the Holocaust did indeed affect Jewish people everywhere. The scars of the Holocaust are still visible, according to Plath, with the woman in the poem still recalling, and being haunted by the disaster. The human…
Plath, Sylvia. Lady Lazarus.
"Doctor Gordon twiddled a silver pencil. "Your mother tells me you are upset." I curled in the cavernous leather chair." (Plath, 1999, p.128) "A few more shock treatments, Mrs. Greenwood," I heard Doctor Gordon say, "and I think you'll notice a wonderful improvement." (Plath, 1999, p.145) Insulin therapies merely make her miserable and gain weight. Only her own bonding with the female psychiatrists on staff, and overcoming her sexual frustrations and hang-ups provides her with some tenuous relief at the conclusion of the book.
Thus, the Bell Jar can be seen as a portrait of a uniquely feminist crisis of the self, of the adolescent self in a normal but fragile and frustrating juncture of development, or of modern psychiatry's inability to deal with such a crisis, except in very ineffectual ways. Esther feels conflict as a woman frustrated to choose between masculine professional ideals and maternity, although upon closer…
Borgen, William a. And Norman E. Amundson. (2005) "Stages of Adolescent Development." (2005) From Amundson, N.E., Borgen, W.A., & Tench, E. "Personality and intelligence in career education and vocational guidance counseling." In DH Saklofske & M. Zeidner, Editors. International Handbook of Personality and Intelligence. New York: Plenum.
Kaplan, Cora. (1990) "Language and Gender." The feminist critique of language. Routledge: London and New York.
Plath, Sylvia. (1999) the Bell Jar. New York: HarperPerennial.
Plath, Sylvia. (1992) the Collected Poems. New York: HarperPerennial.
Sylvia Plath explores ambiguity from the perspective of a woman living in a man's world in The Bell Jar. Esther receives different messages about who she is and who she wants to be. Society tells her to be the good wife and mother but she never adapts well to this notion. She feels ambivalence toward most of the women she meets and ultimately feels pulled in different directions when it comes to expectations and desires. The conflict Esther experiences results from what society expects from "good girls." The article Mrs. Greenwood sends her exposes the hypocrisy she cannot ignore. The article explains how a "man's world was different than a woman's world and a man's emotions are different than a woman's emotions" (Plath 65). The notion of women being pure as the wind-driven snow and submitting to the will of their husbands becomes more of a burden than anything else…
Ellison, Ralph. Invisible Man. New York: Signet Books. 1952.
Heller, Joseph. Catch 22. New York: Dell Publishing Co. 1961.
Plath, Sylvia. The Bell Jar. New York: Bantam Books. 1971.
Salinger, J.D. The Catcher in the Rye. Boston: Little, Brown and Company. 1951.
Beautiful Girl Combs Her Hair" by Li Ho and "Mirror" by Sylvia Plath discusses the theme of beauty uses the object mirror as a symbol to illustrate and effectively use the theme of beauty. In Li Ho's poem, he tells us of the extraordinary beauty of a woman whom me witnesses combing her hair using a 'jade comb,' and makes use of the object mirror as an accessory that the girl uses in her 'beauty ritual.' "Mirror," meanwhile, is a thought-provoking poem that tackles the issue of beauty and vanity as dictated by the society. Plath uses imagery and the object mirror to symbolize the important of beauty to an individual, and how the mirror 'mirrors' the desperation of an individual who aims to achieve beauty (in frustration and great desperation).
The similarity between the two poems is that both use imagery and the theme of beauty. Imagery was used…
" The point made by the poet is similar to the poem above. The reference to John,
The Father of our souls, shall be,
John tells us, doth not yet appear;
is a reference to the Book of Revelations, at the end of the Bible.
That despite the promises of an Eternal life for those who eschew sin, we are still frail and have the faults of people. We are still besought by sin and temptations and there's really no escape. People are people. No matter what we say or do, we find that life is not so simple. Consider this reference, which really refers to a person's frame of reference or "way of seeing."
Wise men are bad -- and good are fools,
This is a paradoxical statement: there is large gap between spirituality and reality. Those we consider wise or bad, might make decisions that are globally profound,…
Anne Sexton's literary success did not provide her with inner peace, and like Plath as well she committed suicide by inhaling poisonous gas ("Biography of Anne Sexton," Poem Hunter, 2008). Prophetically, in Sexton's poem entitled simply "anting to Die," she wrote of suicides: "Still-born, they don't always die, / but dazzled, they can't forget a drug so sweet/that even children would look on and smile." However, although most of her poems can be characterized as confessional and psychologically oriented in their subject and tone, not all of them are simply anecdotes from the poet's tormented life. Sexton's willingness to talk about the complicated feelings of mothers, specifically mothers and daughters, was revolutionary for its time, and she also addressed her own issues in light of a long cultural tradition of silencing female voices, as reflected in her poems on fairy tale heroines like Briar Rose and Snow hite. "Beauty is…
Biography of Anne Sexton." Poem Hunter. 15 Mar 2008. http://www.poemhunter.com/anne-sexton/biography/
Sexton, Anne. "45 Mercy Street." Poem Hunter. 15 Mar 2008. http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/45-mercy-street/
Sexton, Anne. "The Child Bearers." Plagerist.com. 15 Mar 2008. http://plagiarist.com/poetry/615/
Sexton, Anne. "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs." Poets.org. 15 Mar 2008. http://www.poets.org /viewmedia.php/prmMID/15300' target='_blank' REL='NOFOLLOW'>
Even strong women are feminized in the media and in advertising. Burton Nelson notes, "In a Sears commercial, Olympic basketball players apply lipstick, paint their toenails, rock babies, lounge in bed, and pose and dance in their underwear" (Nelson Burton 442). These are all very feminine characteristics, and women feel they must be feminine not only to fit in society but also to catch a man, and that is what the media tells women they should aspire to - catching a man. These messages begin very early, and children buy into them wholeheartedly. Children mimic the role models they see on television, and young women strive to be like the women they admire - thin, petite, beautiful, and often witless. The media celebrates all of these things by glorifying women like Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, and Lindsay Lohan. These and many other young women are role models for many young…
Blum, Deborah. "The Gender Blur: Where Does Biology End and Society Take Over?" Signs of Life in the U.S.A., 5th ed. Maasik & Solomon, eds. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2006. 475-482.
Burton Nelson, Mariah. "I Won. I'm Sorry." Signs of Life in the U.S.A., 5th ed. Maasik & Solomon, eds. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2006. 439-445.
Craig, Steve. "Men's Men and Women's Women." Signs of Life in the U.S.A., 5th ed. Maasik & Solomon, eds. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2006. 161-173.
Devor, Aaron. "Gender Role Behaviors and Attitudes" Signs of Life in the U.S.A., 5th ed. Maasik & Solomon, eds. New York: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2006. 458-464.
Backward and We: A Comparison
When writers think about the future it's often in dichotomous terms. Writers generally see the future in shades of black and white, with very little deviation between the two. This is particularly the case in the novels Looking Backward by Edward Bellamy and We by Yevgeny Zamyatin. The former is an optimistic tale about a socialist utopia which essentially describes a future full of improvements. The latter describes a futuristic dystopia where humans lack autonomy and privacy. In spite of these incredibly different descriptions and notions about the future, there's still a significant amount of overlap between these two novels. Exploring the different shades of each can provide a deeper understanding of each respective author's inner fears and wishes. As different as these two novels appear to be, they are both actually stories about societies which have made the ultimate (and wrong) sacrifice: they've given…
Bellamy, E. . "Looking Backward." Gutenberg.org. N.p.. Web. 5 Apr 2013.
Sancton, T.A. "Looking Inward: Edward Bellam'ys Spiritual Crisis." American
Quarterly. 25.5 (1973): 538-557. Print.
In order to create lasting, worthwhile relationships with people individuals must possess the ability to communicate effectively. At least this is the argument posited by Spitzberg (1999). Further, he states that interpersonal communication or rather the lack thereof is what creates the potential for harmful situations when humans interact (Spitzberg 1999,-page 20). ithout the ability to communicate effectively and meaningfully with others, it becomes unlikely that an individual will be well adjusted as an adult. Conversely, individuals who do possess those qualities will likely develop relationships which are highly rewarding, including their relationships with family members, friends, and in their romantic relationships. The article "Shared Talking Styles Herald New and Lasting Romance" by author Bruce Bower (2010) postulates that people who can converse along the same lines are more likely to become a romantic pairing.
It makes sense that people who have the same communication level and those…
Bower, B. (2010). Shared talking styles herald new and lasting romance. Science News.
Pennebaker. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.utpsyc.org/synch/feedback.php
"A Good Man is Hard to Find" ends with the family being executed by the Misfit, a murderous outlaw. Although O'Connor's story is evidently supposed to be humorous, it gives the reader pause to note that the family will die without ever exchanging a kind word. There are different types of family violence: the somewhat positive violence of the Roethke poem that makes the boy adore his father at the expense of his mother vs. The carelessness and cruelty in the O'Connor story, which arises as a result of a lack of respect and the superficiality of the modern family. Family relationships do not necessarily create a state of understanding. In the story, the most transcendent moment of grace occurs between two strangers, before one kills the other, as physical violence makes the grandmother appreciate her time on earth. "His voice seemed about to crack and the grandmother's head…
O'Connor, Flannery. "A Good Man is Hard to Find." UCF. December 8, 2009.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. MIT Classics: Shakespeare Home Page. December 8, 2009
. . "
"I don't recall having sold the house," Ned said, "and the girls are at home."
In the narration Ned continues on his journey home. Once he is home it is revealed that his house is indeed empty and his wife and daughters are gone. This is just one example of the conflict that exist in this narration between was is reality and what is illusion.
In addition to this aspect of conflict in The Swimmer, there is also a great deal of conflict associated with Ned's ability to swim across the county. This conflict exist because Ned also drank strong alcoholic beverages throughout his journey. It would have been next to impossible for him to swim after he had consumed just a few of these drinks. This is an obvious conflict that would have hindered his journey but the author presents it as fact and not…
Cheever, J. 1954. The Five-Forty-Eight
Cheever, J. 1964. The Swimmer
Cheever, J. 1957. The Wapshot Chronicles. New York: Harper,
Cheever, J. The Angel of the Bridge
Satan has many names in literature, beginning with the Bible, and they are not limited to the image that people have come to associate with his person. For example, Lucifer means "Angel of Light" (apparently the station from which he fell), but he has also been called "The Prince of the Power of the Air," "The Devil," "The Prince of Demons," and, more in line with the needs of this story, "Mephistopheles." He, or a character very like him, is seen as the central opposite of good in many legends, stories, religious writings and artistic depictions throughout history. It seems every culture has to believe in the dichotomous good and evil, so there has to be a primarily "good" character, and a primarily "bad" character. The two stories selected for this comparison contrast paper, Mark Twain's "The Mysterious Stranger" and Goethe's "Faust," use Satan as a central theme, but they…
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang. Faust: A Tragedy. Trans. Frank Claudy. Washington, D.C.: Wm. H. Morrison, Law Bookseller and Publisher, 1886. Print.
Twain, Mark. The Mysterious Stranger: A Romance. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1916. Print.
T.S. Eliot, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, & Ezra Pound
"Preludes" by T.S. Eliot adopts a slant rhyme pattern to convey the state of his thoughts as he writes the poem. The poem basically illustrates the Voice/Poet's thoughts about the seemingly busy, yet tiresome and uninteresting lives of the people in the urban areas (cities). Eliot paints this tiresome and uninteresting picture of human life in the city by slant rhymes, reflecting the continuous stream of unorganized thoughts of the poet. For example, slant rhyming occurs in lines 2 and 4, where "passageways" and "smoky days" are used. However, towards the end of the poem, slant rhyming is instead replaced with end-rhymes (lines 12 and 13, with rhymes used "stamps" and "lamps"), proving once again the presence of 'unstable' and changing thoughts of the poet.
"The pennycandystore beyond the El" by Lawrence Ferlinghetti utilizes symbolism to effectively depict his thoughts about the fleeting…