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English 332 - Writing Assignment

Autor:   •  March 8, 2011  •  Essay  •  598 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,488 Views

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English 332

Writing Assignment #5

1. Eliot's poem, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" is extremely modern in style, content, form and tone. First, there is no noticeable rhyme or meter to the poem. While several lines in the poem do rhyme, there is no specific pattern. For example it does not rhyme in a AABB, or ABAB pattern. The poem is also extremely dark and pessimistic in nature. The man, presumably, J. Alfred Prufrock, is downtrodden in life, and doesn't quite know where he fits in. He is looking around him and sees a dirty city, he's going bald, he's thin and frail, and no partner in life. The title is ironic, because it does not seem to be a love song at all, but a poem reflecting on the darkness of his life and what it turned out to be. He says he's had good days, but it means nothing. He even calls himself a fool at the end of the poem. There is no clear theme to the poem. There does not seem to be any reason to be writing or reading it for any specific purpose, but "art for art's sake." The tone of the poem seems dark and melancholy as well. Almost as if you could imagine this man sitting in a corner talking out loud to himself in a dark room with no one listening. Eliot ends the poem with the image of death, suggesting that it really doesn't matter who we become in life or what we do, in the end we all die.

2. Repeated phrases in the poem are a common theme. Eliot uses these repetitions to exaggerate the fact that life just keeps repeating itself in everyone who lives, and makes us ask what it all means. Specifically, one phrase repeated is, "In the room the women come and go / Talking of Michelangelo." This phrase is repeated twice, and while it seems to be just "thrown" in the poem, it is emphasizing the "superficialness" of human beings.

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