Explore how Peter Porter presents his thoughts on life in A Consumer's Report

Authors Avatar

Explore how the poet presents his thoughts on life in 'A Consumer's Report'

Use examples from the language of the poem to support your answer                        [15 marks]

Peter Porter focuses on the consumerist society and the problems of life that a person goes through in his poem 'A Consumer's Report'. This is explored by the sustained metaphor of life and the monologue used which has an implied listener which is the reader. The tone drifts from a solemn one to a cynical one to highlight life's problems in that to portray how people see life as a bad thing. The main issue from the poem is that it is a life is satirical and people have become too indulged by product that it has become a consumerist capitalist state of society.

The first line of the poem, "The name of the product I tested is Life" expresses the poet's feelings that to him life is just a product and this adds to the title as it is a comparison of life to a product. Products, being tangible goods, have "different labels, sizes and colours". The poet comments on this because he feels that there are different races of human beings and that now everyone is being mixed together into a much more multicultural society. Since a product is anything that can be bought anywhere and anyhow, the poet compares this to life to show that nowadays life has been taken for granted and that it has not been valued. There is the irony used also "that my answers are confidential", when the poet articulates the answers to the question throughout the poem. This tone also resembles life as such because people end up doing things that they do not intend to - which are listed as problems in the poem.  

Join now!

        Things are piling up so fast

        after all, the world got by

        for a thousand million years

        without this, do we need it now?

In this section the poet uses metaphorical language to show two meanings. Firstly that there is so much that needs to be looked after in this developing world and we are losing this out of control by the line "things are piling up so fast". We are all building up our possessions and it is becoming hard to see our needs and wants, but nevertheless we just keep on buying. On a more ...

This is a preview of the whole essay