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Compare how Ted Hughes writes about animals in two of his poems.

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Introduction

Compare how Ted Hughes writes about animals in two of his poems. You should think about: * the way the animals are portrayed * the words and images Hughes employs * how you respond to the animals in the poems Below is a possible answer to the question above. It is not a model answer, and has several things wrong with it, but would achieve a grade C in the English literature exam. Read through the answer and try to see why it should gain a C. Here are the criteria it needs to match. * Sustained knowledge of text * Structured response to task * Personal involvement/empathy * Appropriate comment on meaning/style * Effective use of reference/supporting textual detail * Sustained comment on social/cultural/historical issues or context Response In both "Work and Play" and "Hawk Roosting" Ted Hughes writes about birds. ...read more.

Middle

Hughes makes his hawk a very violent creature with its "allotment of death". This is quite shocking and almost repulsive. In contrast to the arrogant and almost repulsive attitude of the hawk, the swallow is portrayed as a creature of beauty and grace ("a rainbow of purples") although there is a suggestion of violence ("whiplash") in the swallow too. Hughes uses a variety of linguistic devices to portray his swallow and hawk. He uses personification as the major device to portray the hawk. The hawk is given human qualities and a voice that Hughes uses to portray his hawk's unique personality. Hughes uses violent images to add impact to the hawk's violent nature ("tearing off heads"). ...read more.

Conclusion

However, this is changed at the end to leave the reader with a lasting image of beauty. Hughes uses structure in "Hawk Roosting" to portray the hawk as an orderly animal: keeping the verses the same length creates an image of order. The hawk is portrayed as a violent beast. It comes across as very arrogant and has a very limited view of the world. I think that the hawk was portrayed very effectively as a killing machine. It made me think about how a real hawk might view the world. So I think Hughes portrayed the hawk very well, making it seem as if these could be the thoughts of a real animal. The swallow is portrayed as a very beautiful and elegant creature and I feel that Hughes created such beautiful images to inspire awe and respect for the swallow in the reader ...read more.

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