preview

To His Mistress Going to Bed, Good Morrow, Corinna's Going A-Maying, and To His Coy Mistress

Powerful Essays
Seduction in To His Mistress Going to Bed, Good Morrow, Corinna's Going A- Maying, and To His Coy Mistress

Throughout time, one of the greatest challenges mankind has faced is the

sexual conquest of womankind. In many cultures today, this challenge has

evolved into an intricate courting process that often involves buying the

woman flowers, gifts, and meals to persuade her to have sex. Another

device that a man might use to seduce a woman is poetry. In the English

language, the use of poetry to seduce women may be traced back to the late

sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. Cavalier poets such as Robert

Herrick, John Donne, and Andrew Marvell embrace this method of seduction,

carefully constructing verse with the intent to satisfy their carnal

desires. Each of these men rely upon several literary tools to manipulate

women to fornicate with them. Among the more prominent techniques is the

use of logical rhetoric to reason that engagement in sex is the best

choice of action. Another device that appears frequently in early

seduction poetry is the imperative statement, which simultaneously prompts

the woman to take action and endows her with a sense of control over the

situation. Functioning in a similar manner, interrogative statements

suggest the obvious truth of what the poet speaks while forcing the woman

to consider his request. By using a first person plural narrative voice to

address the woman whom he hopes to woo, the poet makes her associate

herself with him in thought, thereby allowing for an easier transition for

personal involvement. Finally, ...

... middle of paper ...

...ional statements, thereby confirming the

persuasive nature of these elements upon women.

Works Cited

Donne, John. "Eligy 19: To His Mistress Going to Bed." The Longman

Anthology of British Literature. Ed. David Damrosch. New York: Addison

Wesley Longman, Inc., 1999. 1563-1564.

Donne, John. "The Good Morrow." The Longman Anthology of British

Literature. Ed. David Damrosch. New York: Addison Wesley Longman, Inc.,

1999. 1550-1551.

Herrick, Robert. "Corinna's Going A-Maying." The Longman Anthology of

British Literature. Ed. David Damrosch. New York: Addison Wesley Longman,

Inc., 1999. 1579-1581.

Marvell, Andrew. "To His Coy Mistress." The Longman Anthology of British

Literature. Ed. David Damrosch. New York: Addison Wesley Longman, Inc.,

1999. 1628-1629.
Get Access