Nobody downloaded yet

Fantastic and Dead-end: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella - Essay Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
Sexton’s narrative poem uses diverse literary elements to question the underlying social and gender issues of “Cinderella.” Sexton argues through imagery, repetition, sarcasm, and symbolism that the main goal of womanhood, which is marriage, is as fantastic and dead-end as fairy tales. …
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER95.6% of users find it useful
Fantastic and Dead-end: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample
"Fantastic and Dead-end: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella"

Download file to see previous pages Fantastic and Dead-end: Marriage in Sexton’s “Cinderella”

Sexton’s narrative poem uses diverse literary elements to question the underlying social and gender issues of “Cinderella.” Sexton argues through imagery, repetition, sarcasm, and symbolism that the main goal of womanhood, which is marriage, is as fantastic and dead-end as fairy tales. Sexton uses several images and repetition to show that marriage, as a means to happiness and success, is as fantastic as other stories. The first stanza is an image of rags-to-riches narratives. Sexton introduces a news story: “You always read about it:” (Sexton 1). The phrase “always read” reduces the classic fairy tale of “Cinderella” into something as common as repetitive story lines in the newspapers. Sexton mentions the plumber who wins the lottery and adds: “From toilets to riches./That story” (4-5). The assonance of “toilets” and “riches” suggests that riches can be a form of toilets too. Sexton criticizes material wealth as a measure of happiness and success, where material wealth is one of the outcomes also of “Cinderella.” Another image of materialism and marriage is in the second stanza. The nursemaid is described as “some luscious sweet from Denmark” (7) who snags the oldest son’s heart, and then goes “from diapers to Dior./That story” (9-10). By saying “some luscious sweet,” the nursemaid is objectified, where she uses her sweetness to get married to a rich man. Saying “diapers” to “Dior” is an alliteration, which, followed by the repetition of “[t]hat story,” signifies the tradition of marriage for women that is centred in materialistic goals; the traditional ideal for any women is to marriage rich. However, to say “that story” repeatedly also underscores the fantasy involved in the marriage ideal. Not all women marry rich guys, in the same way that not all plumbers turn into millionaires. “That story” of “Cinderella” is fantastic in its rarity, but interesting enough to build the basis of traditional womanhood that Sexton opposes. Aside from imagery and word play, Sexton uses a sarcastic tone and writing style to underline that “Cinderella” is an ironic allegory of womanhood and marriage. When she introduces the story of Cinderella, she does not say “Once upon a time.” Instead, she starts with “Once/ the wife of a rich man was on her deathbed” (21-22). By saying “once,” Sexton seems to be saying that these stories are incredible enough that they can only happen once. Afterwards, the image of a dying rich man’s wife is presented. The effect is that the story begins with death, which marriage is about too- the death of a woman’s freedom. Furthermore, Sexton emphasizes sarcasm even when narrating the last words of a dying mother: “Be devout. Be good. Then I will smile/down from heaven in the seam of a cloud” (24-25). The mother’s rules are typical of stereotyped rules on women. Girls are trained to be committed and good to their parents, and ultimately, later on, to their husbands. By putting an enjambment after “smile,” it highlights the happiness placed on promoting and protecting gender norms and values. By adding “down” after the enjambment, it suggests that it does not serve women’s interests to follow social norms and rules. The “seam of a cloud” from which mothers can smile from is incredible, and yet, as gender rules are passed on from mothers to daughters, the fantastic becomes real. In addition, Sexton uses cynical words that portray her real belief in ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Fantastic and Dead-end: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella Essay”, n.d.)
Retrieved from
(Fantastic and Dead-End: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella Essay)
“Fantastic and Dead-End: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella Essay”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document
(Fairy Tales: A Closer Look at Cinderella)
In the same way, the German variant is a snapshot of a more brutal era, where blood flows easily and punishment is savage. This theme of retribution for bad behavior runs through all three of versions of the Cinderella Fairytale that are here examined but it is played out in very different ways.
1 Pages(250 words)Essay
The Frog King and Cinderella
As the author of the text puts it, even in the high-tech twenty-first century, parents make use of these traditional tales to instill important lessons in their children – we have all, in part, learned decency from stories. "The Frog King", for example, teaches us that it is always worthwhile to keep our promises, even those made in haste.
7 Pages(1750 words)Essay
Meaninglessness of Womens Life in Sextons Cinderella
Sexton’s “Cinderella” is a poem of burnt dreams. She might have once believed that she is Cinderella too, but she is disappointed with real life, so she burns these fairy tales that promised her everlasting bliss. The poem argues that a woman’s life is as meaningless as fairy tales because both produce and perpetuate gender stereotypes that create artificial notions of happiness and success.
5 Pages(1250 words)Essay
If, as the argument goes, there has not been a fundamental alteration of what it means for two people to be married, then the institution of marriage is one that is, indeed, sacrosanct, and should not be re-examined. However, as this essay shows, marriage, as an institution, has evolved, and is continuing to evolve, which means that the institution can evolve in the direction of equality, without too much concern.
4 Pages(1000 words)Essay
Traditionally, family was seen as the basic unit of the society and was henceforth valued not only by the society but also be the authority. The spread of culture through globalization has been some of the influential factors that have caused the breakdown of marriage institution.
6 Pages(1500 words)Essay
Cinderella Essay
Ultimately, Sexton powerfully evokes feminist ideals in vividly portraying the undesirable realism of the general events that unfold in the Brothers Grimm story. Sexton's use of imagery to evoke a felling of absurdity is evident throughout her poem, and is used as a tool to editorialize about the state of modern society.
4 Pages(1000 words)Essay
Critique Writing of Cinderella
The story inspires confidence. It is related to children towards the end of their oedipal stage because of the feelings of guilt overwhelming them. The
2 Pages(500 words)Essay
The poet feels that marriage is meant for social confinement and construction. In the poem, humor and sociology is blended. For instance, the poem starts with the lines “should I
2 Pages(500 words)Essay
Cinderella: Synthesis Activity
The paper explains that it is just not a love story it’s constituted many of the ideas that make it is a very strong story of how destiny is inevitable. Having different perspectives to the story with different variants of details Cinderella and is then perceived differently in all parts of the world.
8 Pages(2000 words)Essay
The fairy tale that is commonly known as Cinderella today has got many variants, originating from various communities around the world, from Egypt to Europe to China. In
4 Pages(1000 words)Essay
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.
Let us find you another Essay on topic Fantastic and Dead-end: Marriage in Sextons Cinderella for FREE!
Contact us:
Contact Us Now
FREE Mobile Apps:
  • About StudentShare
  • Testimonials
  • FAQ
  • Blog
  • Free Essays
  • New Essays
  • Essays
  • Miscellaneous
  • The Newest Essay Topics
  • Index samples by all dates
Join us:
Contact Us