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Difference between poems

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Comparing and Contrasting 'Still I Rise' And 'Half-Cast' Both poems are a response to other people's idea of the poet's cultural identities. The poems are written as though the poet is replying to some one directly. 'Half-Cast' is about a multi cultural person who is standing up against racism and against people look down upon them because of their ethnicity. John Agard is arguing with the person who is being racist to him by questioning if 'Half-Cast' means he is half a man. 'Still I rise' is about a woman, Maya Angelou who has had a traumatic personal and cultural history but still she rises above it. She has had to face racial and sexual prejudice, but she still stands strong. In 'Half-Cast' John Agard opens the poem with a polite but angry request. This opening is only an angry one because of the following lines. 'Excuse me; standing on one leg, I am half-cast' This sarcasm is showing that he is trying to be nice but is annoyed about it. ...read more.


This is questioning it Tchaikovsky's music should be seen as inferior because he mixed black and white notes. The poem is well structured and the language is perfectly composed. I have keep using this quote as it very strong and uses a lot of poetic techniques. 'Explain yu self, Wha yu mean'. The comparisons are very good because you can understand and relate to his point as he compares his situation using metaphors. 'Still I rise', it is set out in 8 stanzas, and in which 7 out of 8 are all the same lengths except the eighth as it is the last stanza and is the climax of the poem. The language she uses is mostly formal but it very up beat. 'You may kill me', but she is not bothered. In some stanzas it seems as she is mocking the person/people who are putting her down; like they are pathetic. 'Does my sexiness upset you' the word 'sexiness' in this context does not only imply that she is beautiful and believes that she is, but that she feels proud of her culture, which makes her confident. ...read more.


'History's shame' this is a direct reference to the struggles faced by her ancestors in her cultural history. I think that Maya's technique clearly puts her point across and the last stanza finishes the poem with a strong phrase of 'I rise, I rise, I rise, I rise' presenting that life is hard but what ever it throws at you, you shall rise above it. In each of the poems Maya Angelou and John Agard use repetition which emphasises their subliminal messages in the poem. John Agard gets quite defensive and angry, whereas Maya Angelou although angry and annoyed she stays calms and 'rises' above it. I think the message of the two poems is that even when we are faced with prejudice and discrimination we can be the better people by not complying with it. I also believe the most effective techniques used to present their opinions of their cultures and peoples perception of them were repetition, similes and rhetorical questions; this created the tense moments that draw the reader in to go on and finish the poem. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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