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

Compare the use of the absent presence in Havisham, My Last Duchess, Hitcher, and Kid.

Extracts from this document...


Literature Poems: Section B Compare the use of the 'absent presence' in Havisham, My Last Duchess, Hitcher, and Kid. In Havisham, the speaker expresses feelings of love and hate towards the absent presence. "Beloved sweetheart bastard." Through this powerful oxymoron, we understand that even though he was her lover, he has caused her pain; therefore we see a confused persona who has the two extremes of love and hate instilled in her. Automatically, this oxymoron makes the reader think that the absent presence is evil, but rather than Havisham talking about what act he had committed towards her, she only talks of revenge. "...then down till I suddenly bite awake." Although she never reveals what he did, the revenge is more effective to the reader because they see her reaction towards him, and understand how much that action affected her. In Kid, the absent presence is also introduced as an enemy. "Batman, big shot..." It is almost as if in both poems the absent presence is being used so that the personas can plead their innocence; the personas never speak of any good actions the absent presence may have done. ...read more.


In Havisham, the structure of the poem is such that it is laid out in four equal length paragraphs. This could be to create the effect that the persona is reflecting on what she is saying, and it doesn't seem like a rant towards the absent presence; however she is fooling herself because the use of enjambment means it is read as one long paragraph. This mirrors the persona's own thoughts because she fools herself thinking that she will gain revenge and wishes for it, but never gets a result. "Prayed for it so hard I've dark green pebbles for eyes." The absent presence is almost killing her even though he is not there to cause pain. This connotes precisely how much pain Havisham is experiencing because she is deteriorating at the hands of haunting memories, and she is willing to go through much more just to cause him a small amount of suffering; the absent presence releases her desperation. In both My Last Duchess and Hitcher, the absent presences are presented as nature loving, free people. In My Last Duchess, the Duchess is said to have loved "The dropping of the daylight in the west." ...read more.


The Duke killed her as though she was his possession and because he felt he had been disrespected. Ironically, the poem is written in rhyming couplets presumably to make the death sound beautiful; but only adds a sadistic twist. One difference is that the Duke still felt betrayed and unhappy about the Duchess disrespecting him, but the persona in Hitcher had almost forgotten that he had just murdered someone. Both personas mock the death of their absent presence. In My Last Duchess, the Duke says, "Looking as if she were alive." He says this mockingly and with pride because he feels as though he had gotten his revenge, however she might still appear alive to him because of her vibrant soul that shines out of the painting. In Hitcher, the persona says, "He'd said he liked the breeze to run its fingers through his hair." The persona sounds like he is trying to justify his act, but he doesn't need to justify it to anyone because he gives the impression as thought he couldn't care less. The absent presences in My Last Duchess and Hitcher are the innocent ones. The ones in Kid and Havisham are the culprits. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...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 Pre and Post 1914 Comparison 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 Pre and Post 1914 Comparison essays

  1. The poems Stealing, Hitcher, My Last Duchess and The Laboratory all share the theme ...

    His coldness is further shown by how he simply states 'you can walk from there', conveying his sick, twisted sense of humour. Form is also used in the poems to show disturbing behaviour. In S, the form is four equal stanzas. This emphasises the speaker's calculated thoughts.

  2. Compare and contrast how the poets have presented their speakers in 'My Last Duchess' ...

    There she stands (next line) As if alive. This gives the poem real flow and also adds a slight mental pause which helps make the duke seem real. The chatty language used by Browning in this poem is used to make the duke seem friendlier.

  1. Compare the ways feelings are presented in Anne Hathaway, Kid, My Last Duchess and ...

    'Kid' is also set out in the form of one single stanza but is longer, so not in the form of a sonnet. This structure could represent how all the feelings the narrator has "now I'm the real boy wonder", are linked directly back to how he felt when "Batman", "let me loose to wander leeward".

  2. The poems Kid, Havisham, Sonnet 130 and The Laboratory are my four most memorable ...

    The scattered layout parallels with her scatted thoughts. Whereas, the enjambants add emphasis to certain words. Another poem which uses structure effectively is Sonnet 130. The poem is written in a sonnet form which, after saying his mistress 'reeks', will reassure the reader that the poem is supposed to be in a lovingly honest way after all.

  1. Compare how women are presented in: Anne Hathaway; Sonnet 130; My Last Duchess and ...

    I call That piece a wonder, now: Fr� Pandolf's hands Worked busily a day, and there she stands. Salome: Colder than pewter. Strange. What was his name? Peter? Simon? Andrew? John? I knew I'd feel better for tea, dry toast, no butter, The different structure in rhyming pattern clearly allows

  2. In My Last Duchess and Porphyrias Lover, how does Browning condemn the male personas ...

    When the lover realises Porphyria's affections for him he becomes so crazed by power that he strangles her with the "long yellow string" of her own hair. In contrast to "My Last Duchess", the poem makes completely clear to the reader that Porphyria is cruelly murdered by her lover.

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