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Comparison between 'Vultures' and 'Daddy' poems.

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Introduction

Both poems, Plath's 'Daddy' and Achebe's 'Vulture' share many similarities and differences. Below I have compared and contrasted how each poet conveys such moments in their poem which has haunted them in their lives. Perhaps the most striking similarity between both poems is the fact that both poets allude to Nazi imagery in order to exemplify the unresolved imagery they face. To define love and evil Achebe uses the atrocities done by the 'Commandant at Belsen camp', a human who used to return to his 'tender offspring' everyday even after murdering thousands of innocent Jews. Similarly Plath uses the inhuman acts of the Nazis to symbolise male domination and more specifically the female oppression she felt under the hands of her father and her husband. Within the poem both poets attempt to define love and evil by analogy to the Nazis. Achebe uses atrocities done by the 'commandant at Belsen camp' to define evil whereas Plath uses her 'German' father who was a 'fascist' and her husband with a 'Meinkampf look' to provide a visual representation of evil and to investigate the oppression she felt under such men. ...read more.

Middle

As a result Plath grew up to hate her father whilst the 'Commandant' became a hypocrite towards his children. Both poets appeal to a greater being (God) in order to overcome their tyranny. Plath would pray to this greater being 'to recover' her father whilst Achebe is praising 'Bounteous Providence' to keep love within society to combat evil. This shows that they have given up hope that anyone on Earth can eradicate the negativity in their lives. Both poets use mythical and horrific monsters to depict evil. Plath uses 'a vampire' to evoke how the bloodsucking monsters, her 'Daddy' and her husband, weakened her as they slowly drained all the life out of her. Similarly Achebe uses an 'ogre', a creature who potentially embodies no good, to illustrate that love ( a 'tiny glow-worm) can immerse itself in such a despicable being. In order to emphasize the ultimate frustration and anger of each poet in relation to their struggles, they use explicit language such as 'bastard' and 'evil'. ...read more.

Conclusion

He fears that evil will overcome love and society will not be able to prevent this. He wishes to show society the 'tiny glow worm of tenderness' that exists in every 'ogre'. The Juxtaposition of imagery in Plath's 'Daddy' creates a stream of consciousness mirroring the confusion she felt since her fathers death- 'A bag full of God', 'an engine, an engine', 'the snows of Tyrol'. On the other hand Achebe's poem is more organised. He uses metaphorical language to describe evil by firstly describing it as a 'Vulture' and then secondly a 'Commandant'. Any juxtaposition of imagery in the poem mirrors the relationship between love and evil and is intentional. The conclusions of the poems are both different. In the end of 'Vultures', Achebe' issues are resolved, as the reader remains haunted by the 'perpetuity of evil' as written on the final line of the poem. In contrast Plath announces to herself that she is 'through', meaning she has abandoned and moved on from the abusive portion of her life and is continuing to convince herself that her father and husband can no longer influence her. ...read more.

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