The Use of Literary Devices, Imagery, and Tone in Krapp’s Last Tape Essay

The Use of Literary Devices, Imagery, and Tone in Krapp’s Last Tape Essay

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The Imagery & Tone of a Play:

The Use of Literary Devices Imagery & Tone in Krapp’s Last Tape


In the play Krapp’s Last Tape, there is one protagonist who is described as sitting at a small table, listening to tapes. Krapp is an impaired and “broken-down” elderly man who spends his time listening to his younger voice on tapes. He is egotistical and subjective towards his younger self and critiques the way he acted in a certain place or time. He is lonely, but okay with it as he would rather focus on things that he has already experienced, rather then engage in new ones. He is essentially stuck in the past.
The essay written below disputes the literary devices of imagery and tone in order to provide background and symbolism in the play. In Krapp’s Last Tape, the most important literary devices are imagery and tone because they provide human-like characteristics in the character. They also strive to portray one of the main themes of the play that is self-reflection and attraction towards past recollections. In this essay the use of these two literary conventions most effectively conveys Krapp’s underlying emotions through his contemplations and attitudes to his self-provided recordings.

The play Krapp’s Last Tape, by Samuel Beckett is a literary work that gives a brief background into the past life of an older man. Krapp has a lonely and dull life, as he spends most of his time at his small table, listening to his younger self talk about particular recollections. It is as if his only focus is on the person he once was, rather then the person he has become. His subjective personality and contemplative mindset are portrayed through different literary devices. In Krapp’s Last Tape, Samuel Beckett uses imagery and tone as...


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...the reader with a sense of awareness as to how he thought of the actions and thoughts he once made. Beckett accomplished this through the use of tone and self-reflection, which is very essential to the play itself.
Krapp is a compelling character that lures the reader in with his reflective habits and fascination with tapes. His strong selfish personality helps to focus on the main undertones of the play, that which are meditation and detachment. Beckett’s centers on imagery to bring liveliness into Krapp’s character, while the infusion of tones contribute to the representation of excitement in Krapp’s attitude and opinions. Krapp’s Last Tape is an excellent play with a profound and intriguing character that expertly utilizes the literary conventions of imagery and tone in order to provide the reader with a play that focuses one a man’s obsession with the past.

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