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

Discuss the Theme of Resistance in two of Martin Carter's poem.

Extracts from this document...


MARTIN CARTER COURSEWORK. ESSAY TITTLE-Discuss the Theme of Resistance in two of Martin Carter's poem Martin Carter was born in Georgetown, the capital of British Guyana on June 7 1927. He attended a prestigious boys school, Queen's college. He became a civil servant after living school and started writing militant political journalism under a pseudonym. In 1953, he was imprisoned without trial for protesting against British rule. In 1954, he wrote the "Poems of Resistance" where he expressed his fierce anger and developed an international reputation. He served for 1 year as a UN representative after the independence from British rule was granted in 1966. His poetry contrasts of Guyanan life from hope to sadness and misery as at the time of writing Poems of Resistance Guyana was under British Government and suffering from oppression even though Guyana was given adult universal suffrage in the 1950s. Through his poems, Carter fought strongly for universal suffrage and expressed loyalty to his people and country. Martin Carter died on December 13, 1997 at the age of 70. This essay will discuss the theme of resistance in two Carter's poems, looking specifically at main themes, narrative, key symbols & images, colour/light/dark, repetition, alliteration & sound, mood & tone and structure. The first poem I will be discussing is called "This is the dark time my love". The main theme of this poem is resistance from oppression, destruction of Guyanese culture and the presence of the British troops. For example, the oxymoron "festival of guns" suggests a war-like environment and the term festival could refer to the large number of people involved or to the usually happy or 'festive nature of Guyanan people contrasted with the oppressive 'gun'. ...read more.


In the fourth stanza, Carter refers to the night as being silent "night comes from the river in a boat of silence" and also talks about death "dark is the shroud", "the shroud of night". Carter then goes on to write about the death of the slave "his drum is silent" signifying the cease of heartbeat. Carter shows in this poem that, morally, slavery is wrong and that it leaves a society scattered and angry; "time plants the seed of anger. Carter uses a lot of symbols in this poem. For example "cane field" symbolises a place of work and could also represent a prison for the slave. "Day" suggest torture and a period of work; "river" refers to life, escapism and freedom. He also uses other symbols like "birds" to convey freedom, peace, life and dreams "Night", implies death and rest, "forest" could symbolise nature and life Earth suggests burial, death and the possibility of growth. Seeds may mean beginning of life and the whip is an instrument of torture that drives the slave on. Carter also used lots of colours in "Death of a slave". Example, green to convey life, nature, happiness, brightness, Red signifies blood, danger and the slave's heart, White could refer to peace, joy, beauty and happiness, Day suggests brightness but in contrast dark may refer to death, torture and pain. Carter also uses other colour representatives like dim, deep, sun, river, forest, earth and seeds, so that the reader has a vivid image in their mind of the world in which the slave exists. ...read more.


Judging from the way the poems were written, a reader comes to the conclusion that Carter uses figurative language more than sound effects. In the first poem "This is the dark time, my love", Carter mostly used metaphors and it is short but well structured. But, in the second poem "Death of a Slave", Carter mostly used similes. He structured the poem to reflect the different parts of the day so that the poem is long and in my opinion, brilliantly structured. Martin Carter is a Guyanan poet and the two poems discussed in this essay form part of the poems of resistance collection. The poems use for resistance from the ownership and encourage readers to think about human rights cultural needs. The first poem, "this is the dark time, my love" is mainly about British military presence, destruction misery and dashed hopes. "Death of a Slave" was written more like a story about slavery describing the slave's life from the beginning of the day to the end, night. I think the themes of resistance in these poems are clear and effective because Carter emphasises it with the use of repetition and figurative or poetic language. I think the poems are interesting because they are informative. They inform the reader of the British presence in Guyana slavery, amongst other things. These poems also inform us about the people of Guyana and how slavery and colonisation have affected them historically and culturally. My opinion is that slavery, racism and oppression shouldn't be encouraged. As Carter expresses in his poetry, They leave people in misery. Do you think they should be encouraged? ...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 War Poetry 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 War Poetry essays

  1. The theme that links my three chosen poems, 'Cold in the Earth', 'TheToys' and ...

    to come to terms with it and then move on and be happy. The narrator refers to the lover as the 'Sweet Love of youth' this is emphasising that his/her first love might have died but in most cases, people do not forget their first love but do move on, accepting that all things must pass.


    They conclude that "this enigmatically powerful poem is an astounding assertion of 'masculine' artistic freedom" (p. 610). 3.Dickinson's BECAUSE I COULD NOT STOP FOR DEATH In "Because I Could Not Stop for Death" (J712), Emily Dickinson uses remembered images of the past to clarify infinite conceptions through the establishment

  1. What were they like

    Denise Levertov uses the word "buds" as a metaphor to refer to the starting of a human life. In the third question, Denise Levertov asks us if the Vietnam were happy or not "quiet laughter". She is asking us if they were happy enjoying their lives and if they were a close unit (close family).

  2. Compare and contrast the ways in which writers present their attitudes to the First ...

    'Anthem for Doomed Youth' by Wilfred Owen is about how soldiers that die in the war don't get proper funerals, and how the only funerals they get are the sounds of the guns and the memories of people back home.

  1. WW1 peotry coursework

    if it does not matter about getting hurt mentally or physically during the war and when people read it makes them think that it does matter. Its satirical because he is saying that people who come back from the war with injuries that it wont matter because you are a

  2. A Network of Comparisons and Contrasts in Dylan Thomas's

    With this situation, he wants nothing more than for his own father to not go easily out of this world. In "After a Time," there is not much of a happy twist. This work, in simple terms, finds death and loss to be inevitable and repetitive.

  1. Alabaster Chambers and Hope's Feathered Wings: A Contrast/Comparison of Two Dickinson Poems.

    The feelings that one derives from reading this poem are of peace and warm tranquility. The image that one receives is of an enormous yet gentle creature whose wide, white and gray-feathered wings are a haven to those in need.

  2. GCSE War Poem

    are riding to death and Tennyson is commenting on the lack of questioning to an irrational command. In stanza three, the Light Brigade are in the peak of battle. Repetition of "Cannon" all around them creates a picture of an ambush.

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