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

Compare and contrast the poems "Vultures" and "Night of the Scorpion", analysing how they communicate a sense of their cultural background.

Extracts from this document...


Ashleigh Rothwell 10WX Poetry Coursework Vultures and Night of the Scorpion. Task Compare and contrast the poems "Vultures" and "Night of the Scorpion", analysing how they communicate a sense of their cultural background. Vultures I feel that the title "vultures" denotes a sense of scavenging as I view vultures as scavenging birds. As the title is vultures it must be set in a hot country as this is the traditional habitat of this species. My view of vultures is that they are ugly, unpleasant, greedy and savage. The setting is in Nigeria which is a part of Africa where many of these birds are found. At a glance it looks as though it is free verse but as you study it more carefully it actually has four verses each with a different part to play. All the observations; "greyness", "drizzle", "sun-break" and "nestled close" are all found in the first verse. This verse sets the scene for the reader. In the second verse the author is commenting on the observations he has made. He mentions the "charnel house" which is a place where the bones of dead people are placed. ...read more.


In fact the monsoon conditions had affected the scorpion and all that it wanted to do was to shelter from the torrent. However it was disturbed by the poet's mother who was probably searching for rice to feed her family. She was stung and the poison from the tail entered her bloodstream like a foreign invader defiling the enemy territory. Many neighbours arrived and the author compares this to a "swarm of flies". I would compare it to students who clamour around desperate fro entertainment around a schoolyard fight or would be helpers around an accident victim. The neighbours like the helpers all had their suggestions many of their ideas involving the power, rituals and beliefs of religion. The scorpion is thought to be evil when in reality it is only trying to protect itself. The people believed that the victim and the scorpion were still linked. This bond meant that when the scorpion moved the poison inside the mother moved around her blood invading and conquering. Many prayers were said for the victim. The neighbours also felt that out of this tragic accident some good would emerge. ...read more.


Whereas 'vultures' is set in the middle of nowhere, somewhere like the deserted plains of Africa. It isn't something that would be found happening in a village. 'Scorpion' is a true story of the poets' family and it comes across through the detail and building of atmosphere the poem contains brought about by the phrase "ten hours of steady rain had driven him to crawl beneath a sack of rice". As he was there at the time his thoughts and feelings are brought across very well in his writing. The poem shows compassion when the "mother only said Thank God the scorpion picked on me and spared my children." Conclusion I prefer 'vultures' as I like the way in which evil is contained in good. This is shown in the phrase "in the very germ of that kindred love is lodged the perpetuity of evil". The evil is described in phrases such as "picked the eyes of a swollen corpse", "ate the things in its bowel" and "fumes of human roast". The good however is conjured up by "inclined affectionately" and "tender offspring. I feel it is more of a poem compared to Night of the Scorpion because Scorpion is a very much narrative style of writing. It is too narrative for my liking. ...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 Chinua Achebe: Vultures 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 Chinua Achebe: Vultures essays

  1. Vultures - poem review.

    'Attitude' can be thought of as a combination of the poet's tone of voice, and the ideas he or she is trying to get across to the reader. To decide on the tone, you need to think about the ideas and attitudes in the poem, and then decide how you would read it aloud.

  2. To what extent do you feel that Achebe intends the reader to be sympathetic ...

    true depth of Nigerian culture and history hundreds of years before colonisation. The Ibo use of language, particularly their use of stories and proverbs shows the richness of their culture. A community with these aspects is clearly as rich in culture as any society can claim to be.

  1. From two / three poems you have studied, write about how the poets bring ...

    The poets are clever in the chosen viewpoint in which the poem is written from. In Vultures, Achebe has written the poem from someone who can discover both bad and evil in everyone. "A dump of gross feathers" is a metaphor used to describe the vultures in a bad manner,

  2. Comparison Between "Vultures" and "What Were They Like?"

    All these adjectives emphasize the evilness of the vultures. The language in the poem is based around negative words but has a few positive words which are meant to show the tiny element of love. The description of the vultures is in the past tense whereas the commander part is in the present tense.

  1. Comparsion of Anthology Poetry (Two Scavengers and

    In the same way, the poet of Vultures uses similar techniques when describing a vulture, "Bone of a dead tree" Here Chinua Achebe uses metaphorical images of death to confirm in the readers mind the grotesque bird which she is describing; also the image of death corresponds with the cruelty the commandant imposes upon others.

  2. Haggard's King Solomon's Mines and Chinualumogu Achebe's Things Fall Apart written within a century. ...

    Africa is known for its majestic beauty, flora and fauna. King Solomon's Mines offers wondrous descriptions of the landscape and wilderness found in the untamed, uncivilized, unadulterated land. "There are the deep kloofs cut in the hills by the

  1. Do you agree that Achebe shows an "awareness of the human qualities common to ...

    The use of the phrase 'as is the custom' emphasises the African nature of what is to come in the novel. This would appear to suggest that the novel can be viewed as both 'uniquely African' and 'common to men of all times and places', but specifically as uniquely African.

  2. Compare the ways in which poets present their ideas and attitudes in Vultures and ...

    The poem although quite short, is very detailed, but one has to try and look beyond the words to see what the poet is describing e.g. 'knees spread wide and the water is hiding' this is telling you of the poor women slaves who were raped by their inhuman masters.

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