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Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan

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Introduction The poem " Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan" is about a young girl called Monzia Alvi, which additionally is the writer. She emphasises about her clothes and jewellery that her aunts have sent over from Pakistan. In her writing conveys an image of self-confidence and ambivalent about her self. The structure and language of this poem is spread out across the page to make the reader read the poem slowly. The have to read it loud as well to emphasis the image and to give a better feel and understanding. For example "I longed for denim and corduroy" This is read slowly to create an image to the reader that she is sad or homesick and ambivalent. ...read more.


This is a traditional trouser bottoms from Pakistan. This brings us back to the culture and gives us a sense of direction where the writer is getting at. Remind us of what her country is like and wanting to back. The type of clothing is describe as stunning amazing and vibrant which feel your emotions with a sense of freshness for example "The presents were radiant in my wardrobe." It is describing the colours as 'radiant.' Another example of her personification "I tried each satin-silken top was alien in the sitting room. I could never look as lovely as those clothes." Here she is describing the way in which her clothes are as beautiful as her and the material is silk which shows a sign of quality and better off. ...read more.


This is why she is ambivalent about her clothes and jewellery. She is not sure what country she should been heir's or someone else's. How ever she use this ending: "Or there were beggars, sweeper-girls and I was there no fixed nationality, staring through the fretwork at the Shalimar Gardens" This all links together now because she uses this image as a cliffhanger to make you now, use your brain and work out why she has done this. She leaves us with a good image because throughout the whole of the story she has gave us a bad image of what is expected of her country. ?? ?? ?? ?? Harvey Holdgate ...read more.

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  1. Peer reviewed

    .Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan by Moniza Alvi

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    with an end-stopped line to give a harsh effect to the stanza. This relates to the start where Alvi feels uncomfortable wearing the jewellery as she did the clothes on the other hand her mother even though she was English she is able to wear decorative Asian accessories without feeling uncomfortable.

  2. Comparing and contrasting 'Presents from my aunts in Pakistan' by Moniza Alvi, and 'Search ...

    This is cause she dresses differently to others. This makes her feel kind of uncomfortable, because, even though she really likes these presents from her aunts, she sometimes feels, that she would like to look the same as the rest of her mates. Moniza Alvi's poem is mainly showing her feelings to us by using the presents given to her, as examples.

  1. Problems faced by the personas in the poems

    is free-verse with no set structure or rhyming pattern, illustrating confusion and informality. However, the fact that two out of the three stanzas are in English may imply that English is becoming the dominant language, and that she feels more comfortable writing in this language rather than Gujarati.

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    To emphasise her comments, the writer starts a new line to get the readers attention. She also uses adjectives to describe her thoughts and alliteration to do the same, like 'consider the cruelty' this has been written like this so it can bring out the words to us.

  1. Presents from my aunts in pakistan on context structure and imagery.

    I think this has a nice effect as it lets her imagination drift on flowing through the page, making us drift from one image to another just as the poem does, as it carries on with her imagination. As there is no pattern to this poem, Moniza Alvi cuts off her sentences in places to create emphasis.

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  1. Presents from my Aunts in Pakistan - review

    The things the poet may have wanted us to think about is how people manage to deal with cultural differences for example, another aspect of the school friend scenario may be trying to show how Alvi thought people may react in seeing her in her own cultural clothes.

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    Or perhaps, as fire has a purifying effect, she felt that she couldn't be fully purified, as she was half English and half Pakistani. The poem says that she "longs" for denim and corduroy indicating her English side, but she also wants her parent's Pakistani camel skin lamp.

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