Throughout history there have been countless cases where groups of people have fought for their freedom. They have fought their battles in political debates, protests, and in the most extreme cases war. The oppressed continuously try to escape their oppressors, under the assumption that their oppressors live in complete sovereignty. People did not know then and still do not understand today that the environment they inhabit is the key factor that controls communal freedom. In Wallace Stevens “Disillusionment of Ten O’ Clock” and Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself” both speakers affirm that society does not allow individual freedom to exist in this world. The speaker in “Disillusionment of Ten O’ Clock” (Stevens) places the readers in a position that is crucial to the way that he wants them to perceive of the environment. The poem is written in free verse, a decision made by Stevens to invite his readers to come away from rules; not even writing should be controlled by what thy neighbor thinks. During the poem the speaker does not address his readers. The readers are simply overhearing a man assessing the society in which he lives as he daydreams about what is could be and yet what it is not. It is evident that his goal is to get the readers to look down upon this society which is so caught up in daily routine; prohibiting anyone from having freedom of imagination. This detachment that is created between the speaker and his readers incorporated with the boring monotone at the very beginning of the poem gives the readers a negative impression of the society before they begin to analyze the actual words of the poem. Stevens chooses to convey his message through imagery and figurative language. The speaker introduces his soc... ... middle of paper ... ...Verse 24, Line 18-19). Whitman shows that to lose that bond is to lose all freedom. Thus far Whitman never tries to be like a god in this poem which is a common attribute of a typical conqueror. He points out that he is a kosmos yet he is, “…no stander above men or women or apart from them…” (Verse 24, Line 16) creating this equality among all men including himself. This very equality is what keeps all societies affecting each other’s individual freedom. For Wallace Stevens this is a nightmare and wishes he can escape outside the box; whereas for Walt Whitman this is a blessing to be connected in such a spiritual way and know that connection between on another will never fade. Regardless of the difference in views the fact remains that both these poems have given proof that the environment around you will always play a key role in the freedom you experience.
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...hile African Americans went through journeys to escape the restrictions of their masters, women went through similar journeys to escape the restrictions of the men around them. Immigrants further strived to fit in with the American lifestyle and receive recognition as an American. All three groups seemed to shape up an American lifestyle. Today, all three of these perceptions of freedom have made an appearance in our lives. As we can see, the transition of freedom from race equality to gender equality shows that freedom has been on a constant change. Everyone acquires their own definition of freedom but the reality of it is still unknown; people can merely have different perceptions of freedom. Nevertheless, in today’s society, African Americans live freely, women are independent, and immigrants are accepted in society. What more freedom can one possibly ask for?
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet depreciate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. They want rain without thunder and lightning. They want the ocean without the awful roar of its many waters. This struggle may be a moral one; or it may
... is shown moreover through these pauses. We also see that he places question marks at the end of sentences, which is another way he is showing us the uncertainty in the voice of society. Through his punctuation and word placement, we clearly see the voice of society in his poem, but in a way that tells us not to conform to it.
“Its deserted streets are a potent symbol of man and nature 's indifference to the individual. The insistence of the narrator on his own self-identity is in part an act of defiance against a constructed, industrial world that has no place for him in its order” (Bolton). As the poem continues on, the narrator becomes aware of his own consciousness as he comes faces nature and society during his walk. He embraces nature with the rain, dark and moon but he also reinforces his alienation from society as he ignores the watchman and receives no hope of cries for him. The societal ignorance enforces our belief that he is lonely on this gloomy night. “When he passes a night watchman, another walker in the city with whom the speaker might presumably have some bond, he confesses, ‘I… dropped my eyes, unwilling to explain.’ Likewise, when he hears a voice in the distance, he stops in his tracks--only to realize that the voice is not meant "to call me back or say goodbye" (Bolton). The two times he had a chance to interact with the community, either he showed no interest in speaking or the cry wasn’t meant for him. These two interactions emphasize his loneliness with the
Whitman’s beliefs on human equality are most commonly viewed in his writings, such as Leaves of Grass. His display does not stop there though, he also broadcasted it through his everyday life. Through these outlets he expressed his belief that humans, despite their race, gender and sexuality, were all equal and valuable to the society.
Christie Watson once said, “…there are two possible endings to every story” (Watson 432) in her novel, Tiny Sunbirds, Far Away. If two people were placed in the same situation, it is possible, maybe even fact, that each individual will have a different experience or overall outcome. In “Resistance to Civil Government,” Henry David Thoreau writes about his confinements after being arrested. Thoreau also mentions his reasoning for resisting the civil government, mainly because of its flaws. His essay gained a lot of acclaim in America because of his views of possible liberation. However, taking into consideration Ms. Watson’s words, liberation may not be the case for everyone who follows similar
The relationship between freedom and control is extremely close, and is important in understanding the struggle and individual has against the pressures of society. History has been one massive power struggle, as can be shown by all the wars and violence. Human nature is competitive as well as brutal. There are many issues that divide people, such as religion, sexual orientation, gender, and race. Even basic morals and ideas can cause enormous disagreements. The struggle for both freedom and control is seen throughout The Awakening and The Handmaid’s Tale.
Whitman’s poem was written in the mid-1800s during the industrial revolution, but Hughes’ poem was written in the 1900s during the Civil Rights Movement. This is important because the Civil Rights Movement established the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the Industrial Revolution moved at a slow place but there were still issues with slavery. Whitman’s poem was free verse while Hughes’ poem was traditional rhyme/rhythm. The tone of Whitman’s poem was patriotic and celebratory (I HEAR America singing, the varied carols I hear); because he was paying tribute to the success of the individuals; however, the tone of Hughes’ poem was sarcastic and frustrated (to build a “homeland of the free,’’ because he didn’t feel like some individuals were allowed to experience the American Dream. Whitman’s theme of his poem was that individuals and liberties make America great. On the other hand, Hughes’ theme of his poem expressed that individuals felt excluded from the “homeland of the free.” The purpose of Whitman’s poem is praise for universal brotherhood. However, Hughes’ poem’s purpose was to inform individuals about inequality, meaning that not everyone has the same liberties in America. Whitman’s poem focused on the jobs of the workers, while Hughes’ poem focused on race, social status, and a list to represent the “I am’’ phrase; (I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars). He also
Nothing in life is guaranteed, but the one thing that humans demand is freedom. Throughout history, there are countless cases where groups of people fought for their freedom. They fought their battles in strongly heated debates, protests, and at its worst, war. Under the assumption that the oppressors live in complete power, the oppressed continuously try to escape from their oppressors in order to claim what is rightfully theirs: the freedom of choice. In Emily Dickinson’s poems #280, #435, and #732 and Harriet Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, freedom is represented by an individual’s ability to make their own decisions without the guidance, consultation, or outside opinion of others in order to find their true sense of self. Once an individual is physically and spiritually free, they can find their true sense of self.
To begin, the reader may gather that the poem has a very dark and saddened tone. Due to Lowell's vivid imagery, a mental image of a dark urban setting is created. It also seems very cold, with the mentioning of wind and nighttime. Readers may be able to relate to urban places they know, adding to the reality of the poem. Connections can be made. The imagery is left in such a way that the reader can fill in the gaps with their own memories or settings. Also, since the poem uses free verse, the structure is left open to interpretation. This makes the poem more inviting and easier to interpret, rather than reading it as a riddle. However, though simple in imagery, the poem still captures the reader's interest due to the creation it sparks, yet it never strays away from the theme of bei...
Before addressing any of Stevens’ poems, it must be made clear that this argument is narrowly focusing itself on the visual images within several of Stevens’ poems. To fully examine the sidelines and tangents of a single poem would be impossible, as the poems themselves grow with discovered philosophies, and appeal to innumerable viewpoints and interpretations. Furthermore, because the word image can have a multiplicity of meanings and derivatives, depending on the school of thought the reader has absorbed, I will constrain the definition of image, within this paper, to the stoic “To describe; especially to describe as to call up a mental picture of” (Morris, 657).
Walt Whitman used free verse in “Song of Myself” in order to connect with the common man and his American readers. In this first person narrative, Whitman deconstructs the “self” into many different sections that all are a part of the celebration of the individual. Some of the topics he breaks the “self” into are self- identity, and human exploration (including the human body and sexuality). In the poem, Whitman uses a speaker to exclaim that for individuals to grow they must discover themselves spiritually, physically, and mentally. The speaker in the poem
Wallace Stevens is considered one of America’s most respected poets, taking fame in the early 20th century by his unique use of romantic ideals, incredible vocabulary, and pondering human imagination in the world’s desolate reality. He once stated “One writes poetry because one must” (Encyclopedia of World Biography). Born and educated professionally, Stevens’ poetry frequently discusses how perspectives deal with reality while also an escape from his conventional life.
Walt Whitman wrote many great poems, yet while I read through a list of poems to analyze, one of his most popular poems caught my eye. “O Captain! My Captain!” has so many hidden meanings, as well as sentence structure and imagery. This twenty-four line piece of literary art has made its mark on history by describing the feeling of losing a friend, as well as a leader. This work is a great poem to expose readers to exploring the depths of the words written to interpret the hidden messages among them.
Although Whitman uses a great deal of structural ways to stress his ideas, he also uses many other ways of delivering his ideas. First of all, Whitman portrays himself as a public spokesman of the masses. The tone of the poem is a very loud, informative tone that grabs ones attention. The emphasis placed on the word “all” adds to the characterization of Whitman as a powerful speaker. Furthermore, Whitman takes part in his own poem. Participating in his own poem, Whitman moreover illustrates the connection between everything in life. Lastly, Whitman, most of all, celebrates universal brotherhood and democracy.