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Hard Rock Returns to Prison from the Hospital for the Criminal Insane by Etheridge Knight

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Length: 540 words (1.5 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Yellow      
Price: $19.95
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Hard Rock Returns to Prison from the Hospital for the Criminal Insane by Etheridge Knight



In Etheridge Knight's poem "Hard Rock Returns to Prison from the Hospital for the Criminal Insane," he uses a fictional tale to describe the tyrannical elements of prisons while simultaneously conveying the oppression that those who defy authority face in society. Knight effectively utilizes imagery and analogies (implied or clearly stated) to appeal to the readers senses and draw them into the story (and ultimately the motif).
The poem's narrative is centered around a heroic character named Hard Rock. The name "Hard Rock" is a complicated pun on the American penal system and rock/jazz music as well. Although the term "the Rock," is associated with the military/federal prison in the San Francisco Bay, the term "hard rock" epitomizes freedom (in music). The phrase/name "Hard Rock" is an excellent example of Knight's powerful use of diction to exhibit the poem's meaning on both a denotational and connotational level. The character Hard Rock is his own person-a "free man," though impr...

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