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

With reference to "The Telephone Call" and "Telephone Conversation" discuss and compare the effectiveness of the poet's choice of form, style and use of poetic techniques in order to convey their messages.

Extracts from this document...


With reference to "The Telephone Call" and "Telephone Conversation" discuss and compare the effectiveness of the poet's choice of form, style and use of poetic techniques in order to convey their messages. The overall message carried in Wole Soyinka's poem "Telephone Conversation" is the fact that blacks are treated with unbelievable ignorance. I believe that Soyinka conveys this message very effectively through the use of form, style and poetic techniques. The form of "Telephone Conversation" seems to almost represent a dramatic monologue. This is quite ironic because there are actually two people speaking. Perhaps by giving the poem this form, Soyinka is trying to suggest that the African man feels like he's talking to himself, since the landlady is almost ignoring what he says. I believe the continuous form of the poem can reflect the continuing ignorance of white people towards black people. Soyinka's style exposes r****m in a fairly critical, yet humorous way. This is clearly shown with the comical line of "You mean - like plain or milk chocolate?" ...read more.


In this example, the criticism can be thought of from two different points of view. The man could be degrading the landlady with his wit, or the landlady could be degrading the African man with her ignorance, forcing him to make the sarcastic comments. Soyinka also provides irony to her message. Throughout the poem, the African man has proved to be much more sophisticated and well-spoken than the white landlady. Soyinka uses contrasts to show that the landlady is rather shallow and less witty than the African man. The landlady is first described as having "pressurized good-breeding" , as is stereotypically expected of whites, however she later shows her true self when she says things like THAT'S DARK, ISN'T IT?" and "DON'T KNOW WHAT THAT IS". Through these quotes, Soyinka shows the full extent of the white landlady's stupidity. Fleur Adcock's poem "The Telephone Call", in my opinion, can carry two messages. One could be that experiences shouldn't be tempered with and the other could deal with disappointment as a result of deceivement. ...read more.


extreme disappointment of the ending, thus making the reader realize how disappointed the woman in the poem was to find out that it was all a scam. Adcock mocks companies that invent rather pathetic marketing names by calling the prize an "Ultra-super Global Special". This sounds very exaggerated and appears to be a bit of a mouthful to the reader. Through this quote, Adcock conveys her message by mocking the people who bring about such disappointment with artificial experiences. If I was to look at only Soyinka's poem, I would definitely agree that she has conveyed her message to the reader effectively through form, style and poetic techniques. However, I feel that it is rather unfair to compare it to Adcock's poem, which is made uniquely effective through the absence of the techniques altogether. Adcock's poem is extremely effective in its own right, due to the detached view, colloquial style and big understatements. I think that Adcock is more skilled in conveying her message, because it seems harder to do it without form, style and poetic techniques. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Larkin 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 University Degree Larkin essays

  1. Peer reviewed

    Some critics suggest that Larkin portrays human existence as bleak in his poetry - ...

    4 star(s)

    This implies that the narrator is frightened of what and who he has become. The first line of the last stanza summarises the main themes of everything in the poem 'That how we live measures our own nature'. This line conveys Larkin's feelings about lifestyle reflecting personality.

  2. A critical analysis of Philip Larkin's 'Mr Bleaney'.

    The metaphoric language is not the only interesting feature of 'Mr Bleaney'. There is a complication of metre, line endings and syntax. The syntax reaches its climax in the final stanza where "there is a wealth of subordinate clauses"11, rather than constructed sentences that had characterised the previous stanzas, and

  1. The Whitsun Weddings" is Larkin's longest poem and describes the protagonists long, leisurely train ...

    His isolation of the word "struck" shows that his attention has been captured and he becomes in awe of the tiny detail of the wedding parties. Larkin's isolation is also symbolised by the solitary train journey, on which he can see others in the outside world through an impermeable window.

  2. A Critical Appreciation of Campos De Castilla

    The fact that the reader feels in his place is important since we can now experience the change in viewpoint. Machado depicts a broad view, somewhat majestic by including the scattered armour of a historical warrior amongst the mountains. He then concentrates on the minute figures in the distance, that

  1. By referring to at least two poems, discuss by what means Larkin illustrates the ...

    Even as he leaves, in the end, in his dismissive phrase, 'Bosomy Rose,' one suspects he is still in thrall to the charmer. To the end, he carries a photo of both women. Romance appears to be an illusion to Larkin that delivers none of its promises.

  2. In What Ways Does Larkin Present the Glory and Successes of Life?

    nature or emphasing how people are not fresh and nature only starts again to die. In 'To put one brick upon another' it is clear that working life is not imprisonment, as if routine is taken away there is nothing.

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