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Compare the way the characters of Salome and Anne Hathaway are presented in Carol Anne Duffy's poems.

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Introduction

Megan Field 11MJO October 04 CKE Compare the way the characters of Salome and Anne Hathaway are presented in Carol Anne Duffy's poems. Carol Anne Duffy wrote both Salome and Anne Hathaway. In this essay I am going to be comparing how the characters of Salome and Anne Hathaway are presented in Duffy's two poems. Duffy's intention as with all of her poems is to give historically famous women who were previously unheard a new voice. Both these poems are written in the women's view like a monologue, both deal with death and have a sexual content. Anne Hathaway is Shakespeare's wife. It is written in the style of a sonnet to celebrate her husband's work, Shakespeare wrote many sonnets. I can tell this because there is a rhyming couplet at the end, it is a fourteen line poem about love with a regular rhythm pattern of 10 syllables per line where the second syllable is stressed. It is therefore an iambic pentameter. It uses lots of heavy imagery written as metaphors and similes throughout the poem. ...read more.

Middle

Salome is a murderer with no morality and likens her habit to that of any other more 'normal' habit. "Never again! I needed to clean up my act, get fitter, cut out the booze and the fags and the sex". The four stanzas in the poem reflect her mind, insanely flicking from one point to another. All the stanzas in the poem are about something different. The poem uses enjambment it is where a sentence at the end of one verse runs over to the start of the next. Enjambment makes the poem run faster and reflects Salome's mad mind. "Peter? "Simon? Andrew? John?" In Salome the historical view and the new view are the same, the only thing that has changed is that Duffy has bought Salome into the 20th Century so we can relate more to her. In contrast, in Anne Hathaway the historical view and the new voice are contrary to each other. Before we read the poems, we think that both women will be bitter; we learn that Anne is not, however Salome is. ...read more.

Conclusion

Anne is thankful for the life and time she spent with her husband, "I hold him in the casket of my widow's head as he held me upon that next bed". Whereas cold-blooded Salome never feels any remorse after killing undeserving men, infact she holds them in part to blame for their death. "Woke up with a head on the pillow beside me-whose?-what did it matter?" She doesn't seem to care about the men she kills and knows she will do it again sooner or later. "In the mirror I saw my eyes glitter". She likes the feeling of being in control of someone's life. "And there like I said-and ain't life a bitch-was his head on a platter". The language used in this quote is slang it shows me that Salome has been bought forward to the 20th Century. It seems that Duffy has based her modern character on a promiscuous Salome that gets what she wants and cares very little about the consequences. This is quite the opposite to how Duffy presents Anne Hathaway. Anne Hathaway misses her husband terribly, she celebrates his work and their passionate love affair with each other. Salome is a very negative poem whereas Anne Hathaway is a positive, uplifting poem. ...read more.

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