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

GCSE English literature Pre 1914 Comparative poetry coursework assignment

Extracts from this document...


GCSE English literature Pre 1914 Comparative poetry coursework assignment Compare and contrast the different ways that "love and loss" are represented in the poems you have selected. You should comment on the ideas that the poets communicate, the way the language has been used and how each poet has used form. The selection of poems I will be looking at and analysing are all based on "Love and Loss" All these poems are written before 1900, and all focus on four different aspects of love. The first 'My Last Duchess' by Robert Browning is about jealous love... The second 'Villegiature' by Edith Nesbit is about disappointment in love, thirdly I will be studying 'A Woman To Her lover' by Christina Walsh, which is about equality in love. And lastly... 'A Birthday' by Christina Rossetti which is about a celebration of love. Each of the poems are very different and individual, no two are alike. Perhaps the one that stands out the most is 'My Last Duchess' because it is the only poem that is from a man's point of view, it is also the only poem that displays loss rather than love. The poem is a dramatic monologue because only one person is speaking throughout, and it's dramatic because it gradually reveals the Duke's most inner thoughts and feelings. The poem was written in the Renaissance Period, when a lot of fine architecture and art was being produced, which may have been Browning's inspiration. The poem is about a Duke who gives the woman he loves his "nine-hundred-year-old-name" or... in other words his hand in marriage. It tells a story of how he has a portrait of her on the wall "That's my last duchess painted on the wall. Looking as if she was still alive." That line is implying that she is no longer alive for some reason causing the reader to pause and wonder how she died. ...read more.


To make of me a bond slave...?" That phrase is quite emotive. It makes the reader feel sorry for her and as if her future husband takes her for granted. The use of the words 'conqueror' and 'vanquished' create quite a militaristic image in the reader's mind. "If that what be what you ask, O Lover I refuse you!" the use of the exclamation mark at the end, makes it seam more intimidating and intense! It's very serious and she comes across to the reader as being quite stern and determined. The poem uses a lot of emotive language that makes the reader feel as if this man is quite prejudice and stereotypical towards women... for instance "Wearing out my life in drudgery and silence." It's very one sided and causes the reader to take a dislike to her fianc´┐Ż with out even hearing his side of the story. Which is quite a powerful and hard technique to master. She carries on into the second verse informing him of everything she refuses to be, "I am no doll to dress and sit for feeble worship if that be what you ask, fool I refuse you!" Again Walsh uses an exclamation mark to convey how this woman is feeling. She's telling him that she's not just going to be something pretty he can look at, she's not just there to look good on his arm and that she has thoughts and feelings too. Walsh also uses the persuasive technique of the rule of three... 'Deed', 'word', 'wish' and 'Shame', 'Pity' and 'Abasement'. I think she does this to enforce the message she's trying to convey... and again it makes the reader feel obliged to dislike this man. In this verse Walsh also uses the imperative verb "Go!" followed by another exclamation mark... this also reinforces the idea of her being very strong willed. In the third verse she talks about the fact that she wants equality in their marriage, and that she's not just there to fulfil his needs. ...read more.


Again she's using a lot of images from nature. I think the way Rossetti manages to create these astonishing images so effortlessly is with the use of similes "My heart is like a rainbow shell that paddles in a halcyon sea". This builds up a picture of a beautiful shell with the colours of a rainbow reflecting off it floating in an idyllic calm sea. Similarly the phrase "My heart is like an apple-tree whose boughs are bent with thickset fruit" creates a picture in the mind of the reader of a huge apple tree with bent branches, full of healthy fruit. This causes me to compare how full the tree is to how full her life seems now she has found her perfect man. And also the phrase "My heart is like a singing bird whose nest is in a watered shoot" This builds the picture of a perfect birds nest built in a newly grown tree with a small bird singing a blissful happy tune. The repetition of "My heart is like" helps the reader to understand how this reflects and corresponds to her life with her new lover. After studying all four poems I decided that my favourite was "My Last Duchess" because it's the most effective and moving. I enjoyed analysing it because I liked the fact that unlike the other three poems I had to read it over and over again in order to comprehend the hidden meanings. I liked the fact that it wasn't straightforward and the ideas went a lot deeper than I first appreciated. I also liked the way the Duke implied things so tactfully... that you were left guessing. I've learnt that a poem isn't about the way it rhymes but more about the secret messages the authors trying to convey, and about how the linguistic techniques are used to make you feel a certain way. And "My Last Duchess" has all these qualities. Katie Cook 10AT GCSE English Coursework 'Love and Loss' ...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 Love 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 Love Poetry essays

  1. Love and Loss

    The poet conveys the pain of love in this stanza because of her memory and that he wants to forget her and that she has a painful memory of her that he will be very angry at and bitter. In "Remember" she wants him only to remember her a lot

  2. A Comparison of Two Pre 1914 Poems - Remember, Christina Rossetti, and Sonnet, Elizabeth ...

    The remembrance imagery that echoes throughout gives a feeling of distance as the reader is made aware of the time distance that the speaker is talking about. The writer uses a metaphor in line one where she writes, 'Remember me when I am gone away', with the metaphor being 'gone away' in place of dead.

  1. Comparing and contrasting 'Cousin Kate' to ' A birthday'

    which are full of seeds, this can be seen as an object related to fertility as the seeds portray the eggs within a female body. A contrast can be observed as she goes from talking about purity to intimacy and children.

  2. Pre-1914 Poetry Coursework

    he also realises that she's not as passionate of him as he is of her, and she just wants him for sex and that's it, he says 'to set its struggling passion free from pride, and vainer ties dissever' he realises that she is not that obsessive as the words 'passion free from pride' show how much she really cares.

  1. 'Why would someone wait until marriage to have sex? What benefit is there? Why ...

    A belief system which would force people to abide by a rule, where the person had no free will or option to get out of that belief system or circumstance, would be wrong. Most belief systems have a set of guidelines, which are intended for the benefit of the individual and community.

  2. Love and marriage in the poems 'How Do I Love Thee' by E.B.Browning, 'My ...

    she actually loves him maybe I believe that her love is fading for him and needs reminding so she has the strength to carry on loving him throughout life and even after death as she says 'If God choose, I shall love thee better after death' Also as you can

  1. ‘Why, Mr Stevens, why, why, why do you always have to pretend?’ What ...

    acting only in a manner he perceives as 'dignity in keeping with his position'. The above circumstance highlights the typically compassionate nature of Miss Kenton noted throughout the book, this in stark contrast to that of Stevens. This is important to acknowledge as it helps us to understand another reason why Stevens pretends.

  2. A Comparative Study of Three Pre-1914 Love Poems

    It is "love at first sight"; a thought which reinforces the theme of romance in this scene. Another important element of "First Love" is its rhythm. Stress is placed upon the most important words and the rhythm reflects the heart beat of the writer, changing depending on the scene.

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