My Last Duchess Theme

Good Essays
Power comes in various forms whether it's having control over certain counterparts, political power or in status. Power only enhances the unsavory values and traits of the person that holds it. It's more commonly associated with the male counterparts than it is of the opposite gender. Many believe it to be known as a God-given right that's handed to down from man to man, whether it's making him the man of the house, institution, and government, etc. A prime example of how power and control can amplify the unflattering characteristics of a person can be seen in the poem "My Last Duchess" by Robert Browning. This dramatic monologue portrays a controlling, arrogant and jealous traits of Duke Ferrara and his obsession that surrounds his late wife's…show more content…
The tone is achieved throughout the entirety of the poem and how the speaker of the poem carelessly reveals all his flaws by the way he's describing his last duchess to the emissary. His tone of entitlement and the objectification of women shows how he expects and commands things to go his or he'll simply get rid of it, in lines (24-25)"She looked on, and her looks went everywhere. Sir, 'twas all one! My favour at her breast." explains how he expected his Duchess to be beautiful and well put together physically for everyone to see and envy but to always remain loyal to him. The tone of arrogance is shown in the way he's talking to the emissary about his demands and what he expects from his future wife. The Duke expects his wife to be beautiful and loyal to only him; he wants another ornament to be on his arm, one that'll appreciate his gifts and not flirt or blush as his previous duchess did. In lines (45-47) In lines (45-47) "I gave commands, then all smiles stopped altogether." It explains how his Last Duchess didn't live up to his expectations, so he commanded to have her permanently silenced. His words are seen as gold; because he can afford to do whatever he so pleases, so when his Last Duchess no longer satisfied him, with her less than flattering behavior he had her disposed of…show more content…
The Duke apparently hasn't learned a thing about his past transgressions and believes that women are merely an object or ornament to have your arm. It is seen in the way he speaks about his Last Duchess that is set upon a mantle for all eyes to observe, and even when she's not physically there it's still her duty to only please him. This poem makes way for more important issues when it comes to equality within a relationship; the Duke shows us how toxic a marriage can become if the man holds all the power. The suppression of women in marriages and even in relationships is seen in our daily lives as of today, and as unsettling as it may seem, there are men in the society that holds the same thoughts and values like the Duke. Browning's poem brings light to the way of how many women are treated more like an ornament rather than an equal counterpart, and his poem still rings true even to this
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