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Fall 2011 Emily Dickenson - Essay Example

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Name Here Course Here Professor Here 18 December 2011 Fall 2011 Final One of the great American poets, Emily Dickenson paints a portrait of the somber feelings of despair that can visit a person living through a cold, dreary New England winter in her poem, “There’s a certain Slant of light” (Dickenson, 1890)…
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Fall 2011 Emily Dickenson
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Download file to see previous pages Staring with the formal characteristics of writing, there are three identifiable techniques used within this poem. The first characteristic Dickenson uses in her poem is the idea of imagery. As she describes death, or impending death, Dickenson describes the concept by having readers imagine cold and bleak winter afternoons that oppress everything encompassed in the day. It is through this grim picture of a frigid winter’s day that the reader can start to appreciate the lifeless nature of death. By requiring the reader to visually imagine the places and experiences she is describing, Dickenson is able to connect a reader of her poem to their emotions of the events she is describing. Upon analyzing the poem, a person can equate the emotions they feel about a dreary and bland winter day to the unavoidable future of facing death. Along with visual images, the second language characteristic Dickenson utilized in “There’s a certain Slant of light” is the concept of metaphor. Upon describing despair and depression, Dickenson used a metaphor of ringing church bells that echo in the empty air around them to relate the stark loneliness of depression to readers. By connecting these two items together, Dickenson is also taking the physical object of a church bell, which has both positive and negative connotations, and connecting it specifically with a negative emotion in this use of metaphor within her poem. While the first two examples demonstrate the visual images and metaphors Dickenson wanted her readers to see in “There’s a certain Slant of light,” the poem also contains the language characteristic of rhyme. Dickenson uses the form of inexact rhyme, where the words at the end of line have similar sounds but are not required to have matching vowel and consonant sounds like exact rhyme. In using this type of language characteristic, Dickenson is adding a degree of ease to the poem for readers. By reading the poem as it floats along, the dark subject matter of “There’s a certain Slant of light,” might not even rise to the reader’s awareness upon first review of the poem. Upon establishing three language characteristics that exist within Dickenson’s poem, I am now able to speak of my interpretation of this written work. After reading “There’s a certain Slant of light,” I found that this poem represented a feeling of despair and depression from Dickenson. Whether this was connected to a bleak and dreary winter day or just from depression in general, this idea translated into the incredible loneliness that comes from realizing you feel totally alone. Each time I read the poem, I paid attention to the emotions I felt upon voicing Dickenson’s words. While the majority of the emotions evoked by this piece were feelings of loneliness and trepidation, the one thing that truly struck me was that by setting this poem to the beat of an inexact rhyme, the light and airy nature of how one speaks the poem seems to almost contradict the message Dickenson is portraying. Perhaps in this way, Dickenson was attempting to lead to the reader to believe that even in the most dreary and bleak of winter days, there is always cause to hope for spring. Question 2 As a major genre in literature, the concept of postmodernism is defined as literature from the post World War II ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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