Speak By Laurie Anderson Analysis

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How would you deal with being nsexually assaulted or knowing that you are hated for calling the cops when you wanted help? “Speak,” by Laurie Anderson follows Melinda, who chose not to speak after she was raped at the party last summer. During her art class, Melinda was assigned to draw a tree. Anderson uses the process of drawing a tree as a comparison to her struggle to grow stronger following her experience of being sexually assaulted. Just like a sapling vulnerable to strong winds that grows into a tall tree, Melinda is able to overcome her traumatic experience. In the “First Marking Period,” Melinda’s artwork symbolizes that she still is mortified and wants to keep the assault a secret. A week after the pep rally, Melinda is…show more content…
While Melinda and Rachael are exchanging notes in the library, Melinda wrote, “I didn’t call the cops to break up the party, I called them because some guy raped me” (Anderson 183). Melinda finally reveals to her friend why she is so unsociable. She has been getting bad grades because she is constantly preoccupied by the memory of the rape and can not concentrate on anything else. Melinda shows that she is growing stronger. She is finally coming to terms with the assault. Melinda knows that she made a mistake, but she did nothing to deserve the consequence. At the mall, Melinda and Ivy take turns drawing a tree. Ivy says, “Layer the leaves and make them slightly different sizes and it will look great. You have a great start there” (Anderson 146). Melinda knows Ivy is right. Melinda starts to realize that if she speaks up for what at the party, she will feel more empowered. She can finally begin to feel better about herself. Melinda becomes more social once she starts realizing that it was not her fault. Yeas she made a mistake by getting drunk, but she did not deserve to be sexually assaulted because of
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