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Comparative Essay

1107 words - 5 pages

John Donne was born in 1572 and died in 1631; he was a very religious man and had been ordained a priest at the age of 50. Donne was a well-known metaphysical poet and was also known to be very appreciative of women, and so this would typically show through his writing of poetry. Donne's poem "The Flea" was written in the 17th century and so would be perceived very differently in modern times to what it would have been when it was written. The type of love that is shown in "The Flea" would be described as desperate love, this is shown through the style in which its written, a conceit, this means there will be lots of imagery in it.
Christina Rossetti lived between 1830-1894, during her life ...view middle of the document...

This emphasises the fact that the poem is a persuasive text of a man attempting to persuade his fiancé that premarital sex is not a big deal - whereas the female obviously disagrees due to the fact women had little to no rights during the 17th century, and if they were to be found out, she would be ridiculed.

In "The Flea", there is much use of repetition and alliteration, this underlines that the poem is a persuasive text. The use of persuasive language is shown greatly in lines five and six, 'Thou know'st that this cannot be said/A sin, nor shame, nor loss of maidenhead,'. This line suggests that having sex isn't a shameful or sinful thing to do with the person you're going to marry, the loss of virginity is going to happen anyway. Donne uses personification when talking directly about the flea itself, shown on line seven, 'Yet this enjoys before it woo.' Because this line comes directly after when talking about how it's not a problem about premarital sex, you can assume that the voice of the poem is saying that the flea need not "woo" a lady before getting what they want, whereas humans have to flirt and impress the person before they achieve the ultimate goal.
In the second stanza, the male reminds his partner that in killing the flea, she will be killing him and herself. In the 17th century, religion was very important and suicide was a big sin, the voice of the poem later says that nothing bad came from killing the flea, so nothing bad would come from having sexual relations, which shows the desperation in his love and his use of much persuasive language.
There is use of phallic imagery in the first stanza when talking about the flee, 'And pamper'd swells with one blood made of two,' this shows the desperation of the males sexual frustration. There is also other language that could be related to phallic language, such as 'It suck'd me first, and now sucks thee,' which underlines the point of the narrators desperation.
In "Amen" Each stanza starts with a statement, followed by a question, the use of repetition of this feature highlights the fact that something is finished. There are...

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