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Review of Enter Without So Much as Knocking, Big Jim, Up the Wall and Weapon Training

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Introduction

Julie Gu 09-18-08 Second Period Review of "Enter Without So Much as Knocking" - The poem began with an epigraph in Latin, "from dust you come, and in dust you will return." This struck me to be an incredibly powerful proverb in the sense that the entire piece of literature discussed the cycle of birth and death. The first verse of the first stanza started with "Blink, blink. HOSPITAL. SILENCE." This obviously spoke of a newborn waking into life. The baby opened his eyes and heard the advertisement on the TV. This particular incident referenced to consumerism as one had to pay in order to be born into the world. On the other hand, the first voice after the birth of an individual was the voice of materialism reflected the influence of media on a person even from an early age. The next stanza described the next stage of the child's life where a year or more had passed since the child was born. The verse "A year or two to settle in and get acquainted with the set-up" illustrated the systematic habits that one had to go through in life. ...read more.

Middle

This led to a more personal voice. When the speaker was declaring that he was "every bloody bit as good as you are," the characteristic of self-confidence showed through the speech. Big Jim might be less educated, but he certainly was careless of what others thought of him. The last stanza of the entire poem had a more relaxed and soft atmosphere to the words. Big Jim was reflected in the stanza as a much lovable character that was cared and respected by the community in large. The message was stated in the last stanzas starting with "yet through men like Big Jim shines that pride of life no language can define." Review of "Up the Wall" - The poem "Up the Wall", although brief, had contained important references and an overall concept of life. The structure of the literature was set to be 14 lines which meant that the poem was a sonnet. There could be seen the iambic pentameter, and the emotions expressed in the poem was similar to the sonnets written by William Shakespeare. ...read more.

Conclusion

"Weapon Training" can either be referring to the physical preparation in the army in order to fight in wars. It may also be seen as the emotional preparation for wars as soldiers must be coarse on the outside as well as in the inside. Therefore the sergeant employed harsh and abusive on the soldiers to harden the feelings. In a sense, the weapon of language can be just as malicious and deadly as the actual war weapons. The use of the pronoun "I" in the very first verse of the entire poem had defined the ultimate authority of the soldiers to be the sergeant himself. The rhetorical question in the fourth verse "are you a queer?" was a form of psychological attack on the personal feelings of the soldier. After hearing the direct insult, the anger of the insulted soldier was aroused as hatred began to form. The question in the fifth line "what are you laughing at?" showed the strict discipline in the camp as no emotion can be expressed from the soldiers. Although the poet never mentioned any laughter in the scene, the readers automatically presumed that someone had laughed because of the sergeant's query. ...read more.

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