The Formalistic Approach to Hay's Rapunzel
Prayer has been always a symbol of faith, and even in modern poetry it is still used as a desperate cry to the One in Heaven. One of the great examples of this desperate cry would be Sara Henderson Hay's "Rapunzel".After reading her modern version, familiarity with Grimm's fairy tale "Rapunzel" will reveal a completely new interpretation. Sara Hay chooses Rapunzel's prayer to be in the sonnet structure. Sonnet, being a part of a lyric genre, represents the most personal and direct speaking manner. Here, the lyric poet is speaking from Rapunzel's point of view almost singing her sufferings, her feelings and her past experiences.
Let's remember the first line of the sonnet: "Oh, God, let me forget the things he said". The elegy starts in the prayer form. It helps us to understand from the first line that the lyric hero is in suffering and is desperate. Through the words "let me forget", we can hear the echo of the past life, past things, that may never come back. The author (heroine) is leaving us in suspense, because she will never reveal to us "the things he said" and "the promises he made". The repeating formula "let me" reveals to us Rapunzel's feelings and is establishing the tone of the poem. The first lines help us to hear our heroine's voice tone, and to understand her suffering. Looking more at the first stanza, we can see many associations and connections between some words and the religious motif of prayer. The words "freezing and burning" are the extremes that help us to hear the echo of "Hell" (Rhetoric 102K class discussion, January 23 2001). In the same way the word promises in the Bible is synonymous with the word covenant (or Testament). In the fifth li...
... middle of paper ...
...ed by love, now has become the knowing one: " I knew...I knew...I might have known."
Looking at the last line of the sonnet we understand its purpose. Here, we see the image of many symbolic Rapunzels. The heroine is looking at the past and at the future, and realizes that her life is just one small piece, compared to the Eternal concept, or a concept of All. She realizes that the earthly life is not eternal and she is just a suffering traveler like many others.
Hay’s "Rapunzel" begins as a true worshiper, and finds her plight to be too disconcerting to communicate even to her Creator. So, she devolves into her own imaginings with groans so deep that only her soul can commune at this level. Prayer turns to song, song turns to fantasy, and in her heart, fantasy reveals tragic reality. Her only true hope is found in first heart cry: "Oh, God..."
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- A Psychoanalytic Interpretation of Rapunzel The familiar story of Rapunzel, as told by the brothers Jacob Ludwig Carl and Wilhelm Carl Grimm, takes on new meaning with a psychoanalytic interpretation. It is a complex tale about desire, achievement, and loss. The trio of husband, wife, and witch function as the ego, id, and superego respectively to govern behavior regarding a beautiful object of desire, especially when a prince discovers this object. The story begins in a rural house where a man and woman live without children, near a walled garden tended by a frightening witch.... [tags: Hay Rapunzel Essays]
1098 words (3.1 pages)
- Religious Symbolism in Grimm's Rapunzel A fairy tale is seemingly a moral fiction, intended mainly for children. A lesson in critical analysis, however, strips this guise and reveals the naked truth beneath; fairy tales are actually vicious, logical and sexual stories wearing a mask of deceptively easy language and an apparent moral. Two 19th Century writers, the Grimm brothers, were masters at writing these exaggerated stories, bewitching young readers with their prose while padding their stories with allusion and reference: an example of which is "Rapunzel." Grimm's "Rapunzel" is packed with religious symbolism, which lends a new insight to the meaning of this classic story.... [tags: Grimm Rapunzel Essays]
723 words (2.1 pages)
- The Disturbing Tone of Rapunzel The story of "Rapunzel" has been passed throughout generations in the form of a fairy tale. Typical fairy tales come to a resolution ending ‘happily ever after’. It seems that there is always a villain, always a hero, and some sort of a moral or lesson to be grasped from each story (Rhetoric 102K/L class discussion/lecture, January 18, 2001). Most of the traditional fairy tales involve a ‘damsel in distress’, in which she is happily rescued by a true love.... [tags: Grimm Rapunzel Essays]
772 words (2.2 pages)
- The quality of hay is extremely important in a horse’s diet. If the quality is bad, a horse stands the chance of getting colic. Therefore, it is important for a buyer to know what to look for to ensure that their horses get what is healthy and good for them. The study into hay and its effects on horses plays a vital role in the equestrian world. Hay plays a vital role in the health of a horse and by identifying what factors in hay contribute to colic can help reduce occurrence of colic in horses.... [tags: hay, horses, colic]
597 words (1.7 pages)
- A Feminist’s View of “Rapunzel” The Grimm Brothers’ “Rapunzel” encourages women to subscribe to domestic roles. Through the tales of various female characters, “Rapunzel” teaches women to embrace their domesticity even at the risk and disadvantage of such a single-faceted lifestyle. The first female character is Rapunzel’s biological mother, who embodies the domestic women by relying on her husband and never leaving her house. Her husband encounters the enchantress in her own garden, who, though supernatural, cannot expand beyond the domestic realm.... [tags: Fairy tale, Brothers Grimm, Rapunzel]
1244 words (3.6 pages)
- Formalistic Approach to Corona The formalistic approach allows the reader to look at a literary piece, and critique it according to its form, point of view, style, imagery, atmosphere, theme, and word choice. The formalistic views on form, allow us to look at the essential structure of the story. Stories such as Corona by Samuel Ray Delany show the aspects of a formalistic literary piece. The specific word choice that the author uses is very obvious right from the beginning. The choice of words that are used in the opening sentences imply that the narrator does not have a high level of education, if any education at all.... [tags: Corona Essays]
897 words (2.6 pages)
- Formalistic Approach to Ozymandius While analyzing a poem, a reader notices many things, things like rhyme scheme, word choice, different levels of a poem, and sentence structure. Each one of these things is an ingredient for the four main components of the formalistic approach to poetry. In the poem "Ozymandius" by P.B. Shelley, structure, style, form, and imagery, allow the reader to look deeper into the poem. First the reader must look at the structure of the poem. However, the structure of Ozymandius is difficult to understand.... [tags: Ozymandias Essays]
826 words (2.4 pages)
- Using the Formalistic Approach to Analyze Neuromancer The formalistic approach to an open text allows the reader to decide what is important about the words on the page as well as the reasons and actions of the characters themselves. The reader is then able to derive a reasonable explanation for the plot or even an overall theme of the text. "According to the Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature "when all the words, phrases, metaphors, images, and symbols are examined in terms of each other and of the whole, any literary text worth our efforts will display its own internal logic" (Guerin 75)." When practicing the formalistic approach, the reader must scrutinize the text for to... [tags: Neuromancer Essays]
992 words (2.8 pages)
- Formalistic Approach to Young Goodman Brown The Formalistic Approach can be found throughout "Young Goodman Brown," a short story written by Nathaniel Hawthorne. The Formalistic Approach is one of the most frequently used approaches. It concentrates on the concepts of form, tension, image, and symbol; as well as point of view, irony, and paradox. These styles appear throughout the story. Form in the past has meant what is now known as external form, the way one identifies the work. This type of form is usually associated with poetry.... [tags: Young Goodman Brown YGB]
666 words (1.9 pages)
- Rapunzel I have always enjoyed this fairytale, about a young woman with exceptionally long hair who is kept prisoner in a tall tower by a sorceress. The Grim Bothers and Zelinky's version is very different from each other. Zelinsky retells the story in another way. He brings the story alive and I was able to experience in a whole new way. One thing for readers to remember is that many fairytales were originally for adults, so that is the why they may not always seem quite age appropriate. Zelinky's version relates that Rapunzel reveals that she has had a visitor in the tower when she asks the sorceress to help her with her dress for, "it is growing so tight around my waist, it does not wa... [tags: Papers]
577 words (1.6 pages)