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

How does John Donne and Emily Dickinson portrays the theme of Death in 'Death be not proud' and 'Because I could not stop for Death'

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Explore the ways in which John Donne and Emily Dickinson vividly portray death through language in ?Death Be Not Proud? and ?Because I Could Not Stop for Death? In because I could not stop for death, Emily Dickinson employed the use of extended metaphor of a journey through space and time. On various occasion, it is suggested that the author believed that Death ?stopped for me?. The idea of having more time is repeated throughout the poem. However, this obvious illusion ended when, in the last lines of the poem, the speaker realizes that ?the Horses? Heads Were Towards Eternity?. This illusion could be used to portray the entity of Death as being deceitful and unreliable. However, this description of Death juxtaposed the speaker?s description earlier on in the poem. Instead of the deceiving evil that was suggested in through when the speaker ?first surmised? that the horses? heads ?were toward eternity?, it was shown to be ?kindly? and have ?civility?. This could further contribute to the ?deceitful? persona of Death, showing that he is not what he seems to be, that he is always pretending to be something that he is not. ...read more.

Middle

This is suggested by the extended metaphor of a journey that ran through the poem, given that the journey is the journey of life. With this, it is possible that we do not meet death at the end, we are only delaying the time.The rhythm of the poem could also provide more description of the journey. The steady alternation between the iambic tetrameter in lines 1 and 3, and the iambic trimeter in line 2 and 4 of each stanza could be used to suggest the steady pace of our journey through life, with it being a continuous flow, not disrupted. With this, the break from the pattern at the end of the poem, with it the end of our life, could show the suddenness of death. The extra syllable in the last line could be an attempt to show present the longevity of death and death?s all-reaching omnipotence. In John Donne?s ?Death Be Not Proud?, the break from the general rhythm of iambic pentameter could be interpreted as an intended emphasis on the content of the line. ...read more.

Conclusion

This could be a metaphor depicting the journey of a human through life. When we are young, we are strong, influential, powerful. All of this fits with John Donne?s depiction of Death. As we proceed through life, we becomes older and weaker, nearer to our demise. This could be another connection to how Death is portrayed as a slave to ?Fate, Chance?, as both of these is believed to be the the deciding factor on when we will die. In addition, how John Donne stated that ?poison war and sickness? and ?poppy or charms can make us sleep? as well also enforced on the metaphor. By mentioning events that might have occurred in on?e life and how it may have killed us, he?s linking back to his metaphor of the human live. Finally, how John Donne states that ?though some may call? Death ?mighty and dreadful? but how ?thou art not so?, he many be referring to one?s dissipating authority. A person might still believed that someone past his prime still holds power, or the individual himself might still does, even though it is pure conjecture. The metaphor ends with the suggestion of the afterlife of how ?we?ll live forever?. ...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 Comparisons 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 Comparisons essays

  1. Compare and contrast 'Cousin Kate' and 'The Seduction'.

    he romantically seduces and flatters her, "He lured me to his palace home." 'He' is used in both poems to describe the character of the male. In 'Cousin Kate', she would have known who the 'great lord' was, but the way in which the narrator keeps his anonymity emphasises to readers her timid nature.

  2. comparing John Dryden(TM)s The Fire of Lond

    will happen to those that are caught in the sights of the volcano, that there future is set and they are doomed to suffer a catastrophic breakdown in their society. Byron also uses alliteration 'blind and blackening' to accentuate the unpleasantness and horrid nature of the eruption.

  1. Compare and Contrast the depiction of the countryside and the language techniques used by ...

    I believe that his use of the emphatic and anguish in the cry, 'O if we but knew what we do....' is written to remind us of Christ's words on the cross, 'Forgive them, O my Father, for they know not what they do,' and is his way of showing how important this is to him.

  2. Compare and contrast the way in which Marvell and Donne deal with the theme ...

    In this poem, Donne is envious of the flea and its freedom to roam on his mistress' body. Donne uses the fact that the flea bites both the man and the woman into a game of seduction. In comparison, Marvell chooses to base his poem to lots of different things with love and time as his main themes.

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