I Rise Poem Analysis

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1. The main theme of the poem is one of strength and courage. I see it as a universal theme as it is applicable to everyday situations where we need to be determined and to persevere in overcoming difficult circumstances. It is also universal as we all need to conquer difficult situations and to triumph over it. The theme and poem refer to situations where people have been marginalized and struggles to make themselves heard. They have to rise above their situations as is evident from the words “You may trod me in the very dirt/ But still, like dust, I’ll rise.” Even if a situation seems extremely difficult you will stand up and fight back and rise again. It is especially applicable to the apartheid years and even today in our constant struggle…show more content…
The tone of the poem refers to the attitude of the poet as well as the poet’s emotional colouring of the poem. The tone of this poem is personal as she refers to “I” and “You” on a constant basis throughout the poem. She is also questioning the reader by the use of the words “you” which contributes to the personal tone of the poem. The overall tone of the poem is bitter, angry as well as self-confident. As you read the title of the poem and the repetition of the words “I rise” you realize that the poem’s tone is one of triumph and of winning. By the use of the word “sassiness” she emphasizes her boldness and that she is over-confident and fighting back. She is emphasizing her assertiveness and feelings of certainty. “Sassiness” also gives you the idea of cockiness which adds to a tone of bitterness, but also a spirit of fighting (defiance) and rising. The “Sassiness” is supported by the sarcasm in the poem and the pride and feelings of certainty. “The Sassiness” also gives a certain humoristic tone to the poem. The use of the words “haughtiness, sexiness” contributes to this tone of over-confidence, boldness and playfulness. She wants to overcome sexism and the oppression of women by the use of the following recurring questions: “Does my haughtiness offend you? “ “Does my sexiness offend you”, “Does my sassiness upset
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