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Sylvia Plaths Daddy Through the Eyes of a Reader and the Eyes of Two Experts - Essay Example

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Sylvia Plath’s poem “Daddy” describes the tumultuous and dysfunctional relationship she experienced with her own father. Likewise, on a deeper level, the poem expresses the same thoughts…
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Sylvia Plaths Daddy Through the Eyes of a Reader and the Eyes of Two Experts
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"Sylvia Plaths Daddy Through the Eyes of a Reader and the Eyes of Two Experts"

As such, this short analysis will work to juxtapose the views that this author has and correspondingly incorporate and justify the views of two experts drawn from two separate scholarly articles. For instance, the second line of the poem begins with Plath comparing her father to nothing more than a “black shoe” (Plath 2). The imagery of this comparison in and of itself is striking. Plath continues to claim that as he was the old black shoe – she was the white foot housed inside – afraid to make a sound. This powerful imagery sets the tone for what will be a diatribe that attacks the pure soul of the abusive and maniacal figure that is her father. Plath goes on to assert that her father is the exact embodiment of all things, evil as she describes him as Hitler and eventually a form of vampire that haunts Plath’s life. Says Platt of her father, “Not God but a swastika So black no sky could squeak through. Every woman adores a Fascist, The boot in the face, the brute Brute heart of a brute like you” (Plath 22) Upon closer analysis of the poem, the reader can note that Plath is using her father as a vehicle to discuss something else. Midway through the poem the reader notes that Plath begins to discuss the murder of a second man stating, “If I killed one man, I’ve killed two” (Plath 22). In this way, Plath is referring to the fact that her husband has replaced her dead father as the dreaded curse that haunts her mere existence. As such, the poem experiences growth as the reader becomes aware that the solitarily horrendous creature that she describes is no longer a single person but instead a revelation concerning her own life and the experiences she has had to endure. Regardless of the focus of her emotion, one solitary factor serves to focus the oftentimes desperate nature of the poem into one cohesive piece – rage. Says Platt near the end of her piece, “Daddy, you can lie back now. There's a stake in your fat black heart” (Plath 22). An analysis of the poem by Roger Platzky notes, “Images of victimization in Sylvia Plath’s poem ‘Daddy’ – of Nazis, swastikas, barbed wire, fascists, brutes, devils, and vampires – are so frantic, imposing, and vituperative that the poem seems more out of control than it actually is” (Platzky 105). This understanding of Plath was in fact the desired effect. In this way, Plath continues to denote the fact that her emotions, rage, furor, and hatred equate to the unhinged nature of the physical way that the poem is put together. Furthermore, when the reader encounters Plath’s own vitriol, the nature of the physical structure and deregulated nature of the poem only serves to further cement the furor with which Plath describes the feelings she harbors. Likewise, one author notes the following: “’Daddy’ has been scrutinized from a number of different angles. (It) reveals autobiographical precision, domestic roles, psychological conflicts, and masculine entrapment” (Hassanpour et al 123). In this way, the reader is assured that the thinly veiled hatred and allegorical backdrops are not indications of a deeper and veiled meaning; but are instead indications of the true thoughts, feelings, emotions, and experiences which the author herself experienced throughout the course of her life. Platt notes, “Put your foot, your root, I never could talk to you. The tongue stuck in my jaw (Plath 22). The fact that Plath uses such descriptive and hate-filled Read More
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