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

I am contrasting the poems, "My Last Duchess" and "On the Departure Platform". Both poems, although are written in very much contrasting styles, share a central theme of loss and separation of a women

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

ENGLISH COURSEWORK: These poems present contrasting attitudes towards women and relationships. Explore these attitudes and the ways in which each poet portrays them. I am contrasting the poems, "My Last Duchess" and "On the Departure Platform". Both poems, although are written in very much contrasting styles, share a central theme of loss and separation of a women. It must be taken into consideration that these poems would have been written in the 19th Century when society may still have been very patriarchal. The attitudes towards relationships would have been very much centred on the male being the decision making partner emphasising this feeling of a patriarchal society. However these themes in themselves, contrast also. "My Last Duchess", by Robert Browning is written in the style of what's known as a dramatic monologue. It is called that because it consists entirely of the words of a single speaker who reveals in his speech his own nature and the dramatic situation in which he finds himself. The dramatic monologue reveals its own place and time as it proceeds to uncover the psychology of the speaker at a significant moment in his or her life. The use of this dramatic monologue allows the reader to get into the mind of the character which is vital for understanding this poem. ...read more.

Middle

This shows his lack of love for women and respect for the opposite sex, portraying a poor attitude. However one could argue that the Duke does have a really strong love for his wife. His choice of getting his wife painted by Fra Pandolf (a renaissance artist) must be considered a signal that he found his wife beautiful and must have loved her deep. His decision to keep the painting hung up in his place of residence is an indication that he is not ashamed of her and what she did, showing he does not detest her, although she wounded him deeply. Perhaps, killing her was a bit too extreme but I believe the Duke's belief was that his wife was either his, or no-ones which is quite harsh but is a true reflection on the society in which the poem is set. Thomas Hardy's poem "On the Departure Platform" is a poem of separation and loss of a loved one. Unlike in "My Last Duchess", this poem deals with this theme in a more contrasting way. The narrator may well be the poet himself looking at the departure of the lady in white, white being used to indicate her purity, "wee white spot", "soft white array". ...read more.

Conclusion

It is also possible to heighten the emotion of the poem adding effect. To sum up, I believe that both of the narrators in both poems have very contrasting attitudes towards women and relationships. The Duke in "My Last Duchess" is possessed. He is jealous. His wife, the Duchess is seeing other men out of friendship. She let's painters such as Fra Pandolf paint beautiful paintings of her, yet the Duke is not satisfied and arranges for her killing. I don't think that the Duke is mad, but I believe it is more of what possesses his mind and his heart. He has this burning love for this woman but does not understand why the love is not returned. However the lover in "On the Departure Platform" shows a great deal of emotion. His woman has left him and left him empty handed and heart broken. In reality, this familiarises itself with the Duke as both men face rejection from their loved ones, however the way in which the chose to deal with this rejection couldn't be more different. One kills his wife and the other allows his lover to go. This point emphasises the contrasting attitudes toward women and relationships of the characters. ...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

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

This essay shows a knowledge of both texts and an engagement with poetry techniques. The writer should learn to embed quotes more effectively and address the question with more focus throughout the essay. ***

Marked by teacher Karen Reader 28/04/2012

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. Marked by a teacher

    "My Last Duchess" and "To His Coy Mistress" Compare the presentation of the men ...

    4 star(s)

    There is also a sense that he prefers her on the wall because now he has control over her. This is further proven when he says, "since none puts by // The curtain I have drawn for you, but I."

  2. In conclusion, the poems which I have studied describe a range of emotions from ...

    Sidney says, "Both equal hurt, in this change sought our bliss", and this goes to show that everyone can be hurt throughout life. However, when you have someone who is willing to go through the "rough times" with you, everything becomes better and your sadness becomes joy.

  1. To what extent does Wendy Cope, embody or defy the 'courtly love' tradition?

    She makes no mention of him being divine, and she perceives him as human, and an equal to herself, not of higher status. She places a time limit on herself, showing she is not completely captivated by him. In a traditional love poem, the lovers do not enjoy the pain of their unrequited feelings, and Wendy Cope also feels this.

  2. Select two poems about 'Relationships' Compare the poets' version of the relationships

    She did not see people as a priority. "My grandmother" looks at a strong point of regret. This was an opportunity the speaker missed where a relationship could have blossomed with her grandmother. The sadness that is created is that the grandmother had no friends and no relationship.

  1. First Love' and 'How Do I Love Thee?' are both very personal experiences as ...

    We know that this experience is very perplexing for Clare through phrases such as; "Trees and bushes round the place Seemed midnight at noonday" Not only this, but Clare also uses colour that symbolises love. In the first verse, Clare uses phrases that illustrate the colour white.

  2. Lucretius on Love

    The lovesick attempt to cure the burning passion by physical appeasement. Unfortunately, as Lucretius states, the opposite happens, and the stricken end up wanting more physical appeasement. "The more of it we have, the more fiercely our breast burns with dire craving," Lucretius explains.

  1. Love is best! (Love Among the Ruins) Does Browning persuade you that this is ...

    In a dramatic monologue, the speaker unknowingly reveals his personality through his speech. In this poem, the audience listens to a conversation between the Duke and a nameless envoy that are making the final arrangements for the Duke's second wedding.

  2. The poem Go and catch a falling star is written by the humorous poet ...

    This could be because Donne?s conclusion states that find a faithful woman is impossible is analogous to the impossible tasks in the first stanza.

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