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How do poets from other cultures and traditions show suffering because of their identity?

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Introduction

How do poets from other cultures and traditions show suffering because of their identity? All sorts and types of people suffer through things like racial or cultural identity, because they may be a different colour or come from some where else, or even just because they talk differently. In the poems I have studied Half-Caste, Ogun and Nothing's Changed, the poets put across feelings of hurt and anger mostly because of this discrimination. The main message in the poem of half-caste is that the writer, John Agard, feels as if people only see him as half a person because of this term 'half-caste.' It tells us that he suffers every time people look or talk to him because he assumes they immediately think he is 'half-caste' which is what he believes means half a person. In reality he does not want anyone to look at him any differently from themselves. This is brought across by many techniques. The imagery that John Agard puts into people's mind with the poem is that it is about just half a person: '...I close half-a-eye, consequently when I dream, I dream half-a-dream...' ...read more.

Middle

All of these pieces he makes become alive because of the soul and effort he has put into his creations. '...Quick sandpaper until it shone like his short-sighted glasses...' The quote above tells us that he would put lots of effort into every piece of woodwork he makes. The alliteration in the quote almost gives a sawing sound with the 's', that when read should be emphasised to give a real effect. All through out the poem there are images that show us the man is very talented: '...There was no shock of wood, no beam of light mahogany his saw teeth couldn't handle...' This quote gives an effect that nothing is too hard for the talented and highly skilled man the world chooses to ignore. '...As he cut, he heard the creak of forests...' This tells us that when he makes his pieces of woodwork he can hear the forests and the wildlife who live on the trees; it shows he cares for the things he makes and that he is not synthetic like the products the world wants. The writer's uncle's pieces of woodwork have soul and life, rather than the hollow emptiness of the rubbish that people want. ...read more.

Conclusion

Some of the words in the poem such as 'haute cuisine' gives an effect of expense and exoticness so that only rich people could afford it, which lets you know that things are strange to the writer. The form of this poem is put across in short simple words. The first stanza tries to imitate footsteps. '...Small round hard stones click, under my heels...' The tone of the poem is angry, upset, hurt and very serious this is put across by the whole feel of the poem to show that he feels out of place, in the place he was brought up. This inevitably causes pain and inner suffering The poets want to put across the fact that readers should learn and understand that just because something is different, it may be a lot better than what you thought, and that you should treat people as you wish to be treated and not discriminate. They also show that poets from other cultures and traditions show suffering because of their identity because people are prejudiced and feel threatened by something that is different. The poets suffer because they do not feel as if they can fit in, as people treat them differently or are not so easy to get on with as someone from the same sort of background. ...read more.

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