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

How do Heaney's words show what country life was like and how effective are the images he produces - Follower

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How do Heaney's words show what country life was like and how effective are the images he produces In "Follower", Heaney uses words such as "globed" and "strained". These are words which show that life in the country is difficult and that the work involved can be strenuous. They do however, produce good images about the country, because "globed like a full sail strung" conjures up many ideas of the hard work involved in life on the farm, and "strained at his clicking tongue" not only shows the difficult job of the horses, but through the effective image produced, it shows the reader how skilled Heaney's father is. Other words which show the skill involved in country life include "expert", "without breaking" and "exactly". These all show the reader what an accomplished farmer Heaney's father is, but they also have another use. They show us what country life is like, as mentioned previously, by illustrating how much skill goes into a seemingly mundane task such as ploughing a field, but they also produce very effective images. "The sod rolled over without breaking" not only illustrates skill in the country, but also beauty. ...read more.

Middle

It also has themes about the relationship between father and son in the country and especially on farms. In "The Early Purges" Heaney uses words such as "drown", "trapped", "snared", "shot" or "tug" to describe the various ways in which animals are killed on the farm. These words show that country life could be brutal because it was not necessarily enjoyable to kill these animals, but it was something that had to be done. The images which he uses here, such as "with a sickening tug, pulled old hens' necks." are not pleasant, but they are certainly very effective because the reader immediately knows what is going on, and can relate to both sides of the argument, i.e. Taggart and the young Heaney. Country life is seen here through the eyes of the young Heaney as brutal and unfair on the animals, "Dan Taggart pitched them [the kittens]...into a bucket". However, the words which Heaney uses are very clever, because the reader does not necessarily side with Heaney. The arguments put up by Dan Taggart, such as "Sure isn't it better for them now?" are seen to be reasonable later on in the poem when Heaney says "It makes sense". ...read more.

Conclusion

The continuation of farming from Heaney's grandfather, to Heaney's father, "the old man could handle a spade. Just like his old man" shows the reader that country life is very family orientated, and professions are often carried down from father to son. The images of Heaney's father being taught to dig by his father are very powerful and effective, because they show the reader the strong bonds between people on a farm, and in country life generally. The last line, "The squat pen rests. I'll dig with it." show that in the country, it is often expected that people like Heaney will follow in their father's footsteps, but Heaney is seen here to choose to be a writer. The image of Heaney digging out his memories with pen are very effective because the reader can visualise the likeness between poetry and farming. However, the image is also a surprise, because Heaney says in "Follower" that he wants to be like his father, but here he has changed his mind. This poem, like the other two, has main themes, and they are very similar to the others. It is all about the hard work involved in running a farm, the relationship between the father and son, and the expectation that profession and skills will be carried on throughout the family. ...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 Seamus Heaney 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 Seamus Heaney essays

  1. How do Heaney's words show what country life was like and how effective are ...

    The images which he uses to show this are effective because "the sweating team" can be pictured by the reader as man and horse working together in harmony to produce a perfect field, but the effort and will-power needed to do it are great.

  2. In “Follower”, Heaney uses words such as “globed” and “strained”.

    as quite funny, but they also give them an idea of the life in the country, where the children tend to grow up and follow in their father's footsteps. However, here, it is clear to see that Heaney is not just describing any father-son relationship, but a very special one,

  1. Explore Heaney's themes and poetic technique in 'Digging' and 'Follower'.

    milk to his grandfather he says that he 'corked it sloppily with paper.', after praising his father and grandfather he belittles himself. The grandfather doesn't even acknowledge him properly he just 'fell to right away'. Then he compliments his grandfather again 'Nicking and slicing neatly', contrasting himself with his grandfather.

  2. Mother - son relationship

    had happened For nothing had that had not always happened Beforehand, day by day, just touch and go, Coming close again by holding back In moves where I was x and she was o Inscribed in sheets she'd sewn from ripped - out flour sacks.12 This sonnet precisely and scrupulously describes and celebrates the work itself.

  1. In his poems 'Follower and Digging' Heaney is thinking about his father. How do ...

    Heaney has no control over this because cannot simply tell his father to go away. The poem 'Follower' tells us about Heaney's admiration for his father and how when he was a child he wanted to grow up to plough just like him.

  2. Discuss how Heaney portrays images of family and country life.

    After reading the poem through, I am inclined to believe that the poem is written in past tense, from the 1950's, about a boy who has been taken out of school during the mid - term, due to the tragic death of his younger brother.

  1. Poetry Comparison - 'Follower' and 'The Early Purges' by Seamus Heaney.

    But the fear came back". In this particular occasion, the full stop emphasises a space of time where Dan had no regret of what he had done with no disgust, but suddenly the opposite is true over a moment in time.

  2. How do the words in "Follower" and "Digging" show what country life is like ...

    The horse's tongue is stretched and pulled tightly like a string and this is coupled to the sail strung image of the father. It emphasizes the connection between the farmer and animals because they perform team works. The words 'sweating' and 'stumbled' emphasize that the father and the horse are

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