A Critical Analysis Of Dunbar And Komunyakaa's Poem

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By using poetry as a medium, Dunbar and Komunyakaa are able to indirectly battle racism. Although the poets were born during different times, there is a clear division between blacks and whites, which is broken down by Dunbar 's “Sympathy” and Komunyakaa 's “Facing It.” Dunbar speaks out against racism and uses the caged bird to represent a slave within his poem. At the end of his poem, Dunbar calls for help from his black community and evoke sympathy and remorse from the white people. Komunyakaa uses an approach that addresses the similarities between both sides of the colour spectrum and addresses death, war, the difficulties of expressing difficult emotions and public confrontations between white and black people. The allegorical meaning against racism expressed in these poems would be missed if an academic analysis was not preformed on Dunbar 's “Sympathy” and Komunyakaa 's “Facing It.” A title is always…show more content…
All throughout “Facing It” there are multiple contrasting metaphors that are parallel to each other. The speaker says “I 'm stone. I 'm flesh” (l.5) which is a contradiction. Stone is expressionless, unfeeling, and unmovable, whereas flesh is weak, full of life and expression, and decays over time. The division between these two physical properties is used to underline the differences between skin colour and racism. By comparing the two to each other, Komunyakaa is able to remove the barrier between them. The speaker also says his reflection is “like a bird of prey, the profile of night/ slanted against morning” (l.7-8.) Night can be associated with black, whereas morning can be related to light and white. This creates direct parallelism between African Americans and Caucasians and is used to accentuate the similarities between the races. Each side is a part of night and day. The two together are necessary for all of the natural processes of the
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