History Lesson Poem Analysis

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Poetry Analysis

Once the poem “History Lesson” was written numerous poetry foundations celebrated it for many reasons. “History Lesson” not only makes an impact on literature today it has also impacted people also. This poem inspires people and moves them to the point to where they can find a personal connection to the poem itself and to the writer. Not only does it hold emotional value for those who were victimized and those whose family were victimized by the laws of segregation, but the poem is also celebrated for its complexity. The poem uses many techniques to appeal to the reader. In this poem the writer uses imagery to create logos, uses connotation convey ethos,
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When an individual reads something historical they cannot fully comprehend the story because they did not live in that time period nor did they experience the event in the character’s shoes. In this story the writer uses imagery to make the reader feel as if they were present during the event. The entire story takes place on a beach where the author is a young child posing for a picture her grandmother is taking. While narrating this event in her life the writer describes the ocean, she says “The sun cuts the rippling Gulf in flashes with each tidal rush” The way in which she described the sunset on the ocean illustrates the event in a descriptive way in which the reader can imagine it and feel as if they were there. She also uses forms of imagery to create nostalgia, for example she states “ I am four in this photograph…My hands on the flowered hips of a bright bikini.” This can transport a reader to a time where they were young and visited the beach so that they may better understand this…show more content…
The poem “History Lesson” written by Natasha Trethewey has a unique form of style and rhythm that causes the reader to rely more on their comprehension of the story than the presented facts. Specifically, in the beginning of the poem the writer describes herself standing, with her hands on her hips in a flowered bikini while her grandmother, beaming, takes a photograph of her. In the middle of the poem she states that the beach has recently been opened to people like her and her grandmother. Finally, at the very end of the poem she says “Forty years since the photograph where she stood on a narrow plot of sand marked colored, smiling, her hands on the flowered hips of a cotton meal-sack dress.” The writer formatted this poem in a way where she did not put the information together in order to create ambiguity. The poem was formatted in this way so that the reader would have to logically assume that the grandmother was not only taking a picture of her granddaughter at the beach, but was reflecting back to her past and admiring the opportunity that her granddaughter was getting to have that she did
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