• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What impression do we form of childhood in "I Remember, I Remember" and "Growing Up"? What similarities/differences do we recognise in the poets' approach?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

What impression do we form of childhood in "I Remember, I Remember" and "Growing Up"? What similarities/differences do we recognise in the poets' approach? In the poem "Growing Up", by U.A. Fanthorpe, the main theme of childhood is trivialised by the poet in the first stanza. "Shoplifting daintily into my pram" implies gracefulness and therefore is a humorous. However, at the same time, it is light-hearted and trivialises the age of being a baby. The poet mocks the years when you are a baby, too, describing her action of "burrowing my way through the long yawn of infancy". This suggests that she is hiding from the years of infancy. At the same time, it mocks infancy as the "long yawn" refers to the fact that babies tend to sleep a lot when they are very young. Fanthorpe's choice of words shows her dislike for childhood. "Nudging" implies that childhood was urging her insistently and annoyingly to grow up, and she did not want to go through childhood. "Nudging" implies persistence, which can be perceived to be annoying. Moreover, she relates sordid and negative experiences with growing up. "Hairy, fleshy growths and monthly outbursts" and "blood-thighed" are examples of this. ...read more.

Middle

because roots implies stability, solidity and a positive anchorage symbol. It is a positive question, full of optimism, in contrast to the friend's view on Coventry and his childhood. The enjambment and illogical order of his recollections of his childhood memories suggest a feeling of spontaneity, which may reflect the author's view on growing up. The poet appears to be sarcastic towards his "unspent" childhood as the use of "no" and "never" throughout the poem helps to distinguish this. It gives a negative, pessimistic, bleak outlook on childhood. The bitterness is emphasised when the poet adds, "Who didn't call and tell my father There before us, had we the gift to see ahead". The abrupt ending suggests that the next phrase might have been that the boy has a gift for writing. The bitterness is brought out by his dreams never being fulfilled in his childhood. The poet may not blame Coventry for his lack of fulfilling his dreams in childhood. It is hard to tell whether this is the case when the character in the poem gives a lacklustre reply; "Oh well, I suppose it's not the place's fault". The use of "oh well" and "I suppose" give us an indication that the poet is not convinced of the statement he made. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, Larkin shows growing up to be spontaneous and disorderly as the inconsistent, erratic rhyme scheme is like the dreams of his childhood wasted. At the same time, Fanthorpe gives the idea of childhood being sordid by giving horrifically intimate details about puberty. Such an example is "hairy, fleshy growths and monthly outbursts". However, Larkin is not warm towards childhood as he describes it as "cold". He does not mention any intimate details, or recollections of sordid experiences. Larkin shows his embarrassment and bitterness to his childhood when he "wishes the place in hell" and "staring at my boots". Fanthorpe describes childhood as imminent and a force that you cannot fight against. It is a definite thing that is inevitable. We get this feeling when she "was caught...a criminal guilty of puberty". Finally, in Fanthorpe's account, there appears to be something sinister about childhood. The use of "dark", "Masonic", "sabotaging", "masking" and "shoplifting" emphasises this point. However, in Larkin's poem, he associates childhood with boredom. This is shown to be the case when "staring at my boots" is used to show boredom. These are the impressions we form of childhood in the two poems with similarities and differences shown in each poet's approach. 08/05/2007 Mr A.R.Taylor Kamran Gaba (Hg) English Set 1 Block II 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Philip Larkin section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Philip Larkin essays

  1. Compare and Contrast "Trees in the Garden" by D.H.Lawrence And "The Trees" by P.Larkin

    may be that they are so cheerful when he is not. "...thickness..." may be that they are large, oafish and get in the way too much. The poem also uses many non- committal phrases such as "...almost... a kind of...

  2. Comparing four or more poems, including those of Brian Pattern - Show how the ...

    'It deepens like a coastal shelf' Larkin explains that his hurt and hatred built up and deepens more every time he got hurt. Larkin obviously cannot forget about this childhood and forgive his parents for the way he has turned out. He states 'get out as early as you can'.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work