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'Commentary on War Photographer' by Carol Ann Duffy.

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Introduction

Commentary on War Photographer by Carol Ann Duffy War Photographer by Carol Ann Duffy is based on a war photographer who has experienced and witnessed the reality of war. The war photographer has returned to his quite home in England from his latest job. He develops the spools of film, he took in the frontline. As he organizes the pictures, he remembers the terrifying situation he is in, "A stranger's features faintly start to twist before his eyes a half-formed ghost." Then, he sends those pictures to the Sunday newspaper, where his editor will choose the ones to be printed. However, the war photographer knows the pictures will not have a lasting effect as the readers "do not care" and sympathize with the sufferings of others. This poem is written in present tense, as if the incident is happening now, with the effect of making the picture more alive and shocking. ...read more.

Middle

The darkness in his room, "in his darkness he is finally alone", is a reflection of his depressed feeling in remembrance of the awful events he has witnessed. The horrific experience is so long lasting, which will dwell in his memory continually as represents by run-on-lines. The simile chosen to compare the photographer with "a priest preparing to intone a mass" is effective. The reader can clearly picture the inside of a catholic church in their mind, with red lights glowing softly. It also assures that what the photographer is doing is holy and heroic as danger and risks are involved, "fields which explode beneath the feet of running children in a nightmare heat." But the photographer still accepts the challenge. As for the sound effect, the alliteration of the "s" sound, "with spools of suffering set out in ordered rows", illustrates the silent and isolated atmosphere the photographer is in-the photographic studio. ...read more.

Conclusion

It reinforces the existence of the photographer in two separate worlds, which separate him from the newspaper reader geographically and emotionally as he has different views from the public towards the issue of war. He moves from place to place from time to time and cannot possess a stable home. The speaker hints the photographer's desire to return to rural England as in line one he is "finally alone", which stresses that he has been waiting for this moment for some time. After having a clear interpretation of the poem, I feel shame on the newspaper reader, as they are obviously more interested in their own lives as the readers will only shed tears over the tragic photographs as they are "between the bath and pre-lunch beers". Not only did they ignore the agonies of the victims, they didn't express much appreciation towards the heroic task performed by the photographer. I really hope that the public can focus more on the suffering of others some day. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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