• Created by: fazza
  • Created on: 14-05-13 20:27


the poem is about audens apathy to tragedy. this revals the personality of auden as described by bernard bergonzi as auden being a misanthropist.he is discontent woth the world because of their immunity to tragedy this is defined through aspects of the poems language ''expensive delicate ship that must have seen something amazing, a boy falling out of the sky. taking a marxist approach it is nce.possible to see this as the fault of the upper class rich arrogancehe tells the story of icarus a renowned moral mesaage in the most ironic way by using the ballad form normally used for its narrative form this is also paired with the use of enjambment. making it more like a story than rather letting the reader directly perceive it as a moral message.this may be a representation that auden feels that it is worthless to make man aware of the tragedies of the world. but rather darwa aspects to wards using language that comes accross as ambiguous and confusing. ''children who did not specially want it to happen, skating on a pond at the dge of the wood.''. the true depiction of how tragedy is random and you will never know when it will attack.the poem is supposed to make you wonder why anyone can be so blind to the signs. the moral compass of the poem is resonant in which it confuses the reader and makes them think in a typical critic audenesque way.

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narrative features / point of view / initial aims

as itis about audens apathy to trgaedy this must be audens monologue, it is a personal acccont of how man is immune tragedy.Auden tells the poem from the 1st person narrator being himself and to an extent can be seen as intraspective as he expresses the ignorabce of man through his own voice ''everything turns away quite leisurely from the disaster''.we also see the admiration of the ''old masters'', someone who auden looks up to '' how wel they understood its human position'' from his we can learn indeed tragedy is from the human error, also echoed in '1st september 1939

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from and structure in the mix

auden has constructed the poem of 1 stanza, hover it reads like two different stories because of the canhge of tone that almost appears as an afterthought, ''Anyhow in a corner''. it introduces to the second part of the poem which focuses on the exploration of the art. it allmost dismisses the first part of the poem as a tangent.the poem is written in a free verse menaing that the poem is free of any rhyme schemein which auden creates a regular conversational tone. whic is ironic when talking about tragedy. the long irregular lines subtly enforce the irregularity of the poem,so the poem becaomes more prosaic than petic. the poems intention as a new critic would say is not to be aesthetic but to be of some moral intrinsic value. the lack of structure is employed and works to illuminate the point of the poem. in audens lyric the long irregular lines introduce audens misanthropist approach to human kind and its ignorance of tragedy. the poem quite ironically is of 21 lines which is half a sonnet and this poem is at the least considering love.

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setting and time and a ''little'' charcterisation

the poem starts quite abruptly and sharp much like the appearnce of tragedy in the story of icarus as he falls. the poem is based on audens visit to the poem in 1938 to the museaum in belguim brussels the afterthough : ''anyhow'', makes the reader be placed where auden is at the time suggesting that the poem is written psychologically at the time. as auden is experiencing the poem so are we. certain aspects of the picture are portrayed for example the characterisation of the ploughman, although literally still life. we can also explore his ignorance as he may have ''heard the splash'', but as told by auden it was not ''imporatnt''. ther may also be marxist approach to the characterisation of the ship , as it is described mockingly as a ''expensive delicate''. this may be a portrayal of the owner.

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auden also uses enjambment which combined with his narrative technique allows him to become an effective striy teller however this paired with the onomatopeic language effects the purpose of the moral and becomes ambiguous. ''walking dully along'', creates the effect that tragedy is just a normal every day occurance and so auden is adament in trying to portray that is how it shall go on. and this is shown in breughels icarusas everything ''turns away''. he rejects the idea of a punishment apart from icarus who is the moral base of the poem a warning not to be over ambitious. not even pathetic fallacy is used to become an impact on punishment the ''sun shone as it had to on the white legs dissapearing into the green''. an innapropritae use of colooquail term in order to portary the irony of the poem. as well as mock the social implications of the class system

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