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

A Comparison of the Presentation of Women in the Poems

Extracts from this document...


A Comparison of the Presentation of Women in the Poems "La Belle Dame Sans Merci" by Keats and "Mariana" by Tennyson Though both poems have the common theme of unrequited love, Keats and Tennyson assign very different characteristics to the women in their poems. In "Mariana", the woman is submissive and a victim of cruelty, whereas La Belle Dame in "La Belle Dame Sans Merci" is the more powerful of the man and woman in the poem, and the one inflicting the cruelty. In both poems, the landscapes mirror these characteristics, and even the feelings of these two women. The landscape is also symbolic of Mariana, as she is mortal and will eventually die as plants die, and seasons change. ...read more.


La Belle Dame even rides the knight's "pacing steed" herself. This use of the landscape around La Belle Dame by Keats to help shape her character is also used in "Mariana": "From the dark fen the oxen's low..." Tennyson's use of pathetic fallacy portrays a depressed, "low", Mariana. Especially Mariana's aversion to light associates her with death, or unhappiness, as opposed to life or happiness. However, perhaps even La Belle Dame is unhappy, as she is forced to spend her whole life abandoning men, without change. This is shown by the number of Kings and Princes she has wounded: "...pale Kings and Princes too, Pale warriors, death-pale were they all." As there have been so many men ruined by her, it seems likely she has been doing the same thing all her life. ...read more.


Tennyson does this by changing the repeated "My life is dreary" at the end of each verse to "The night is dreary", or "the day is dreary". This is very effective as it shows the only thing that changes in Mariana's life is day or night, and her age: "Old faces glimmer'd thro' the doors, Old footsteps trod the upper floors, Old voices caller her from without." The repeated use of "old" accentuates how long Mariana has actually spent alone, and also implies that Mariana's entire life was wasted in the tower. Stuck back in time... Archaic language, "Hath thee..." "He cometh not..." legends, Arthurian, Shakespeare... more magical, naturalistic... Escapist feel of poems... to escape grim reality of industrialisation... In conclusion, more cynical, love makes people upset, or all terrible, or through terrible times, find solace in love? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Alfred Lord Tennyson 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 AS and A Level Alfred Lord Tennyson essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The English Patient

    5 star(s)

    Driving through the desert, his truck exploded. He assumed it had been sabotaged by one of the Bedouins, as there were spies from both sides among them. Escaping the explosion, he set out in the direction of a plane he knew was buried at one location in the desert.

  2. Comparing the Role of Women in Sense and Sensibility and Othello

    Therefore, being a daughter of a senator, she has to act a certain way and do what women of high class would do. Elinor and Desdemona both marry the men they loved and they married for love and they get status and money with it.

  1. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost and If Sleep and ...

    Even within its descriptive mode, the poem shifts from the visual details of the first stanza ("He will not see ... To watch his woods") to the sounds of the third stanza ("harness bells ... The only other sound's the sweep").

  2. Lord of the flies comparison

    Hierarchy in Victorian times often dictated how a person was treated. Oliver is particularly poorly treated as his mother is seen to be without a wedding ring. On the other hand, in Lord of the Flies, there is an initial attempt by the boys to establish democracy and equality through use of the conch to call meetings.

  1. Father Quigley(TM)s sermon and the presentation of religion.

    However this is particularly more evident in the role that the Catholic Church played, in forming his negative attitude towards organised religion. Moore continuously reveals religion of all descriptions very negatively, for example according to Donoghue he hates Belfast "such is his bitterness that the bitterness applies to all aspects

  2. 19th Century Mystery Stories Coursework

    "The flames dwindled and vanished," this gives a very simple yet effective description of the flames that vanished one by one. "...turned to where the flames were dancing between the glowing coals, and splashing red reflections upon the furniture," the use of words and language is used very well to create excellent imagery such as dancing flames, which is personified.

  1. Comparison Of Love Poems.

    yet he uses a large variety of adjectives that personify every day things as being sad and emotionally scarred. He uses words like 'crusted, rusted, broken, sad and strange, weeded and worn' and the phrase 'lonely moated grange'. He uses the alliteration in these phrases to add to the similarity

  2. Compare and contrast American playwrights presentation of masculinity in Death of a Salesman, Whos ...

    This clear lack of caring friends shows how w***y?s entire philosophy of being well liked is a lie and his entire perception of life is disproved and his masculinity is undermined. Moreover ?Loman is haunted by the hollowness of the objects in which he has invested his selfhood.?[5] His desperate

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