Literary Analysis Of Elizabeth Alexander's 'Nineteen'

1138 Words5 Pages

Essay Outline (5%) 1. (Introduction) a) Thesis statement: In her poem “Nineteen”, in which she remembers about one summer, Elizabeth Alexander mentions the need for continuous psychological transformations, which are triggered by the curiosity of differences and the desire of learning from others. b) Plan of development: Through the use of symbolism, tone and contrast, Alexander puts the emphasis on the coming-of-age of the persona, which is significant regarding her personal growth. 2. (Body paragraph 1) a) Device under analysis: symbolism b) 1st Quotation in MLA (can be made shorter, but should be easy for the teacher to understand): “all there was to eat was white: / cauliflower, flounder, white sauce, white ice cream.” (1-2) c) Explanation (how does the quotation support the theme?): Along with the repetition of the word “white”, Alexander uses the white color to symbolize virginity, a common meaning of the white color, as well as the purity of youthfulness. In the first stanza, the persona is portrayed as carefree, naïve and almost childish, which corresponds to the author’s initial psychological state, prior to any maturation. d) 2nd Quotation in MLA (can be made shorter, but should be easy for the teacher to understand): “His beard …show more content…

The nineteen year old girl has never left her parents’ house, whereas her partner has physical and psychological scars from the Vietnam war, in the jungle. This contrast between the two individuals’ origin shows the influence one has on the other in their relationship. They mutually help each other getting over their different difficult reality by using their opposite characteristics. They are curious of discovering the other’s current reality, as the girl wants to become an adult and the man needs a hint of innocence. In short, this complementary relationship implies that one’s psychological evolution comes from his/her positive and negative

Show More
Open Document