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How do the words of Tennyson's poem express Marianas frustration and depression?

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Introduction

How do the words of the poem express Mariana?s frustration and depression? Although ?Mariana? is comparable to ?The Lady of Shalott?, in that both poems focus on a lonesome and isolated woman, ?Mariana? has much more emphasis and focus on her frustration and depression. Tennyson successfully portrays her emotions through a variety of creative uses of words: the personification of the landscape subtly shows how she has no other human contact, thus it seems that ?her mind? is subconsciously making the surroundings into animate objects to show this. The other effective, and sometimes more evocative, technique is the regular use of onomatopoeic vocabulary, which, aurally, vividly annunciates Mariana?s frustration, such as with long vowels. These, and other features, create a lucidly presented mood that supports the underlying meaning that the poem is written upon. ...read more.

Middle

This therefore shows how she inevitably has become depressed. ?blacken?d waters slept? also provides support for this, but at the same time, draws the reader?s attention to the fact that, as Mariana?s surroundings have become stagnant and lifeless, she too must be the same. On a more explicit level, onomatopoeia is widely used throughout ?Mariana?, and it is these words that are often repeated, adding even more emphasis to the images that they portray. For example, in the refrain of each stanza (and therefore is repeated throughout), ?dreary? and ?aweary?, create a slow and miserable sound, by the use of assonance of the ?ea? vowel sound, which naturally seems long, and drawn-out. Also, both these words are part of her direct speech, so there is added emphasis on how emotionally despondent Mariana is, as if she is moaning. ...read more.

Conclusion

Although nowadays, this may be classed as fairly clichéd, it still yields the necessary meaning for the final stanza, which seems to be a final plea for her life to end. In conclusion, this variety of levels of word use, from the almost automatic and self-perpetuating sounds effects that the words create, to the deeper significance of the personification of the landscape, creates a very expressive poem. The reason this is so effective is that, instead of just giving direct information of Mariana’s frustration and depression, Tennyson has skilfully used other ways of showing this. Whilst these aren’t immediately apparent, the reader becomes aware of their effect, as they create a powerful image of the entire setting, in which Mariana is centric to. It is far more interesting than just being told that Mariana is depressed, instead, we are led to believe it through a creative build up of language. ...read more.

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