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

Compare the effectiveness of the poet's use of the dramatic monologue in 'My Last Duchess' and 'Porphyria's Lover'.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Assignment 2: English Literature: pre 1914 Compare the effectiveness of the poet's use of the dramatic monologue in 'My Last Duchess' and 'Porphyria's Lover' These two poems are both about love and a relationship; however they are not the type that ends happily ever after. They both represent a man's love for a woman and reveal faults they have in their relationships. As in all dramatic monologues the personality of the narrator is revealed through what he says, the words he uses and his point of view about events. For instance, in 'My Last Duchess' we see an example of a man with too much pride from his line 'I choose to never stoop'. We then see possesiveness and insecurity in 'Porphyria's Lover' when the protagonist strangles his love because he wanted her to 'give herself' to him 'for ever'. In both poems setting is very important in revealing character. The scene is set in Porphyria's Lover at the beginning with personification, saying that the wind 'did its worst to vex the lake'. ...read more.

Middle

We see immediately what sort of a character Duke is from his intriguing attitude towards the picture while he explains about his 'Last Duchess'. He seems to present her as 'just another object in the room' as we have already seen with his possessive pronouns however he describes her in great detail and depth. 'Her mantle laps' and the 'Half-flush' that dies along her throat' shows his surprising attention to her, of course it seems to be her physical beauty he has observed rather than her inner person. Porphyria's Lover's main character seems to unravel more steadily, beginning with the weather characteristics which have already been stated and moving on to describing Porphyria earlier rather than revealing details about her lover. There are many sensual and rich descriptions about her including ''Her smooth white shoulder' and 'her yellow hair displaced' which shows how attractive Porphyria is and helping the reader to see how the lover is jealous of her life when away from him. Through the words in 'My last Duchess' we can tell that the female is a warm and passionate character with his affectionate vocabulary to explain her features before his absent minded murder. ...read more.

Conclusion

His obsession was so great that he could not take the fact Porphyria may have had 'vainer ties' when perhaps she did not have any at all. He did not want to face losing her in any way and was deep in thought until he found what he thought was the only solution. I thought 'My Last Duchess's' main character was far more critical of the woman and had found an irritating factor about her which he used as an excuse to kill the poor Duchess. He had had more wives before that as obviously stated in the title and I began to wonder whether he was just using them to create a better appearance for himself and wondered what had happened to the others. I also found it a shame he had wasted a life he seemed to know so little about. It was as if he just thought about her as a beautiful possession like the other works of art in his home. Ben James English 1 08/05/2007 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Robert Browning 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 GCSE Robert Browning essays

  1. Robert Browning's Use of the Dramatic Monologue.

    In Fra Lippo Lippi we come to know - almost intimately - one of the great painters of his of the Renaissance as he is imagined by the poet: we learn about his escapades, his introduction into a religious order, and his ideas on art all of this through what Fra Lippo and beauty and religion.

  2. Examine Browning's use of the dramatic monologue in 'Porphyria's Lover' and 'My Last Duchess'. ...

    every move, as she, "Withdrew the dripping cloak and shawl, / And laid her soiled gloves by, untied / Her hair and let the damp hair fall". Each comer in the phrasing indicates a pause so the audience is able to absorb each piece of information.

  1. Compare the presentation of relationships in My Last Duchess, Porphyrias Lover and ...

    It is left suspicious for the reader. "That's my last Duchess painted on the wall, /looking as if she were alive" From this we are aware that she had died in the past as her portrait is on the wall as a remembrance. However, in The Laboratory the death is about to take place.

  2. English Literature Coursework - My Last Duchess & Porphyria's Lover

    she came to him that night which Porphyria goes to him during the storm and he then realises that she does in fact worship him. At this point his jealousy stops for a few moments and he wants to keep this moment forever and the only way he thinks he can do this is by killing her.

  1. Compare and contrast Robert Browning's dramatic monologues 'My Last Duchess and 'Porphyria's Lover', by ...

    However they also pose stark contrasts to one another. The Duke chooses 'never to stoop' and is overly conscious of class and social etiquette. The Lover on the other hand is a total contrast to this. Instead of trying to be magnificent and powerful, like the Duke, the lover is

  2. Porphyria's Lover/ My Last Duchess comparision. Women and relationships in the19th century

    By contrast, the Duke in 'My Last Duchess' is shown as a formal, cold-hearted man who despised his late wife's lust for life. He wanted her respect, though all he could see was her pleasure from all around her, as the following quote shows.

  1. How do the poems "Havisham", "The Sisters" and "Porphyria's Lover" present the theme of ...

    However, the Lover doesn't realise he is being used, but truly believes Porphyria loves him, 'Porphyria worshipped me', and believes she wants to be with him forever, 'and give herself to me forever'. As affairs were frowned upon, he believes there is only one way he can help his 'worshipper'

  2. "Browning is a good storyteller but is he better as a poet?" Discuss merits ...

    The narrator, having become the active character, realizes that Porphyria "worshipped" him, and that she was "mine, mine, fair, perfectly pure and good" meaning that she was pure as if she were a worshipper of a god, he feels like she is worshipping him and followers would do to a god in a temple having cleansed (purified)

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