Tone in Sylvia Plath's Lady Lazarus Essay

Tone in Sylvia Plath's Lady Lazarus Essay

Length: 1867 words (5.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Tone in Sylvia Plath's "Lady Lazarus"

In “Lady Lazarus” by Sylvia Plath, the speaker’s tone is revealed through many different poetic aspects. Throughout her writing, the speaker’s attitude towards death appears to be happy but, when looking more closely at Plath’s use of poetic devices her attitude is bitter. Shown mainly through the diction, images, sounds and repetition, this depressing tone emphasizes the speaker’s feelings about death. First, diction or word choice used throughout this poem depicts apart the meaning and stresses the tone. Next, the images used to describe the speaker’s experiences with death shows the emotions and thoughts that go through the speaker’s mind concerning death. These events the speaker experiences give a vivid description, which reveal her attitude. Lastly, the repetition and sounds throughout the poem encourage the importance of the poem. Through diction, images, repetition and sounds depicts apart the poem in showing the true meaning and most essentially, the part of this poem that reveals her attitude towards death.

The title is the first indication that Plath uses diction to underline the tone and attitudes towards death by the speaker. “Lady Lazarus” firsts suggests that this speaker is a woman. Then, for “Lazarus” Plath alludes to an occurrence in the Bible, where Jesus Christ raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:44). This use of diction from the beginning shows that Plath’s speaker or the woman’s manner and outlook towards death, which means that she has attempted suicide, but has not been successful. Next, in the first line of the poem, “I have done it again” (1), suggests disappointment and sadness in this woman’s life. This first statement therefore, brings the ...

... middle of paper ...

... tone of the speaker through her attitude.

In conclusion, Plath’s exercises various poetic devises that emphasize the attitude towards death by the speaker. Diction as a poetic devise shows though the choices that Plath makes in the selection of her words to depict the unenthusiastic tone of the poem. Then, the next poetic devise used is imagery, which was the most affective devise because of the vivid images the audience can imagine in their own minds. This approach also represents the depressing attitude and tone towards death. Lastly, the sounds and repetition are also used to show and express the downing aspects of the poem, including the tone and the attitude of the speaker. All together they make up just some of the important poetic devises that are being used in this poem that can analyze the speaker’s attitude towards death, which clearly is deadly.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Internal Oral Presentation Script By Sylvia Plath Essay

- INTERNAL ORAL PRESENTATION SCRIPT When students like me begin to study the works of Sylvia Plath, most of us tend to portray her as another raging poetess that we would have to study and because she eventually gassed herself to death at the young age of 30 in 1963, we have a further disinterest to analyse her writing. It is unfortunate that this tragic legacy has now overshadowed her profession because during that era of time in the 1950’s, her poetry was perceived as refreshing and countercultural....   [tags: Sylvia Plath, Poetry, Ted Hughes, Lady Lazarus]

Powerful Essays
1232 words (3.5 pages)

Essay about Sylvia Plath's Lady Lazarus

- Sylvia Plath's "Lady Lazarus" In her poem, “Lady Lazarus,” Sylvia Plath uses dark imagery, disturbing diction, and allusions to shameful historical happenings to create a unique and morbid tone that reflects the necessity of life and death. Although the imagery and diction and allusions are all dark and dreary, it seems that the speaker’s attitude towards death is positive. The speaker longs for death, and despises the fact the she is continually raised up out of it. From the title, Plath gives us immediately the theme of the poem....   [tags: Sylvia Plath Lady Lazarus Essays]

Powerful Essays
1358 words (3.9 pages)

Analysis Of Sylvia Plath 's Poem, Daddy, Lady Lazarus And Ariel Essay

- Controversy surrounding Sylvia Plath and her collection Ariel is still present in today’s society. The collection is written using personal stories in a confessional tone that makes it impossible for the reader to remove Sylvia Plath’s life from the poems. The interpretation of the poems filters directly into Plath’s life with memories of her father, husband, children and her struggles with mental health. The collection is controversial because Plath committed suicide and the depression and grotesqueness of her inner self is present in many of her poems; especially her later collection....   [tags: Sylvia Plath, Suicide, Confessional poetry]

Powerful Essays
2075 words (5.9 pages)

The Theme Of Darkness Through Imagery Of Death And Tulips By Sylvia Plath

- Many people come from a haunted past, leaving indefinite scars in their memory. This causes permanent numbness in their hearts and leaves them with nothing but isolation from the their loved ones. These damaged memories can later flood the individual causing him/her to create an enemy within themselves. The internal scars within a person stay hidden; however, certain circumstances may draw out he/she hidden past and shows him/her to the world. In “Lady Lazarus” and “Tulips,” Sylvia Plath creates a theme of darkness through imagery of death and sorrow that reveals the sadness she feels due to her haunted past....   [tags: Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, Lady Lazarus]

Powerful Essays
1314 words (3.8 pages)

Essay on Sartre's Theories and Sylvia Plath's Poem Lady Lazarus

- Sartre's Theories and Sylvia Plath's Poem Lady Lazarus After reading Sartre's Essays in Existentialism, I evaluated Sylvia Plath's poem "Lady Lazarus" according to my interpretation of Sartre's philosophy, then used this aesthetic impression to evaluate the efficacy of Sartre's theories as they apply toward evaluating and understanding art. If you have not read the poem in question, I suggest you go here to check it out before reading this essay. "We write our own destiny -- we become what we do." -- Madame Chiang Kai-Shek When a reader experiences Sylvia Plath, immediately he is aware that he has never read anything like it....   [tags: Sartre Sylvia Plath Lazarus Philosophy Essays]

Powerful Essays
1748 words (5 pages)

Sylvia Plath's Mirror Essay

- Sylvia Plath's Mirror Sylvia Plath's "Mirror" offers a unique perspective on the attitudes of aging. "Mirror" displays tremendous insight and objectivity into the natural human behavior of growing older. Plath is able to emphasize the loneliness, hope, despair, and insecurity that awaits us through mankind's incessant addiction with reflection. "Mirror" expresses the problems associated with aging through terse comparisons between reality and desire. Plathe's strength of "Mirror" lies in its ability to establish a solid comparison among appearance and human emotions between the first and second stanzas....   [tags: Papers Sylvia Plath Poem Poetry Essays]

Powerful Essays
804 words (2.3 pages)

`` All My Pat Theories Against Marrying A Writer `` And Plath 's Poetry Essay

- It is difficult not to read Hughes’s and Plath’s poetry in relation to each other due to their intimate relationship and their support for each other’s career during their marriage. In Plath’s journals she wrote “All my pat theories against marrying a writer dissolve with Ted: his rejections more than double my sorrow & his acceptances rejoice me more than mine,” thus showing that they shared each other’s goals in life (Hampl 1995: 4). In a BBC interview with both Hughes and Plath, Hughes said that “he and Plath have ‘a single, shared mind,’ ‘a telepathic union’ that was ‘a source of great deal’ in his poetry,” whereas Plath said that she thought “all the poems [they] wrote to each other and...   [tags: Poetry, Rhyme, Sylvia Plath, Translation]

Powerful Essays
1524 words (4.4 pages)

Analysis Of The Poem ' Lady Lazarus ' Essay

- Carolyn Kizer mentions at the end that his friends are “well-groomed pets” unlike the speaker. Plath dehumanizes the speaker by comparing herself to a cat that had nine lives. The poem also contains internal monologue between the speaker and her inner bitch while there is external dialogue from her and her ex-lover. These components are major when discussing the meanings of each poem. The tone of the poems have a similar negative connotation but in “Bitch” the speaker changes the tone from angry then to depressed back to angry....   [tags: Sylvia Plath, Poetry, Emotion, Rhyme]

Powerful Essays
1344 words (3.8 pages)

The Broken Heart of Sylvia Plath Essay

- The Broken Heart of Sylvia Plath "Dying is an art, like everything else. I do it exceptionally well." Sylvia Plath has long been recognized as a poetic icon. After committing suicide in her thirties, many of her previously unrecognized works gained notoriety and praise. Throughout her life, she struggled to be accepted into the literary world. After writing many poems, short stories and "The Bell Jar," she remained unsatisfied with the success and momentum she gained with each, and took her own life....   [tags: Biography Biographies Essays]

Powerful Essays
2069 words (5.9 pages)

Sylvia Plath: A Search for Self Essays

- Sylvia Plath: A Search for Self         The collective body of Sylvia Plath's poetry demonstrates definitively her mastery of her craft. Plath has been criticized for her overtly autobiographical work and her suicidal pessimism, however, close study reveals that her poetry transcends categorization and has a voice uniquely her own. As Katha Pollit concluded in a 1982 Nation review, "by the time she came to write her last seventy or eighty poems, there was no other voice like hers on earth" (Wagner 1)....   [tags: Biography Biographies Essays]

Free Essays
1973 words (5.6 pages)