charge of the light brigade

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  • The charge of the light brigade by Alfred lord Tennyson
    • context
      • poet laureate- role to write about events in brutish history
      • many of the men leading the army were rich upper class and privileged.
      • the upper class men made a mistake and caused the death of hundreds
    • form meter and structure
      • ballad
        • ironic and dramatic , elegiac  to those dead
      • refrains
        • Untitled
      • dactylic diameter
        • structure- horses hooves, glory, ironic.
      • sibilance
        • violent and emphasis.
      • 6 stanzas
        • 600 soliders, long peom- glorious. monotous strcutre of war, inescapable.
          • ironic to have order- the charge was chaotic.
    • language
      • while horse and hero fell
        • euphimistic lznguage- "while"= the conjuction perhaps belittles the deaths as an after thought or background.  "hero" highlights courage and glory in their deaths, but the writer equates it with a horse. 3rd person narrative, disassociated with violence
      • valley of death
        • image of isolation and being surrounded. metaphor- courage and understanding of their sacrifice
        • biblical allusion to the story of david and goliath. in this case. appeals to majority catholic public to side with British war effort as propaganda. satirical use of the idea of an international superpower like Britain being seen as the man and not the giant. makes the battle appear divine as god guides David and is with him
      • when can their glory fade?
        • highlights the futility of war- actually questioning when will their glory fade?- questioning patriotism. glory is repeated throughout here he questions the use of it.
      • theirs is  but to do and die
        • syntax of line- die after do just like the men, role of a solider.
    • charge- cost of war and glory


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