In “Lady Lazarus” by Sylvia Plath, the title is the first indication that the speaker is a woman, and underlines the tone and attitudes towards death. “Lady Lazarus” presents three main conflicts concerning the life, death and revival. First, Lazarus is a man from the New Testament Gospel of John. He had been dead of an illness for four days, and Jesus bring him back to life. Sylvia Plath used this literary allusion to foreshadow that she was going to talk about death, and following by the inevitable revive.
Chanel Courant Poetry Analysis As two 20th century female poets who served as feminist figureheads for the literary genre, Sylvia Plath and Adrienne Rich's works experience some expected crossover in thematic content and overarching ideas about the stifling entrapments of womanhood, abuse of power, and pain as means of freedom. Plath's "Lady Lazarus" focuses on the control that comes with the vulnerability and entertainment tied to public displays of mental illness, while Rich's "Valediction Forbidding Mourning" depicts the female struggle to express emotion within the confines of male dictation, and the two find their commonality in the search for autonomy in a world where women are not afforded the luxury, and where their feelings are watered down to spectacles to be watched or immaturity to be subdued. Plath's works are overwrought with autobiographical sentiments of suicide and depression, and
The story "Marigolds" by Eugenia W. Collier is a short story that goes through the journey of Lizabeth. Lizabeth is a young girl that goes through an event that transitions her from a child to a woman. She shows many different sides to herself. She is wild, immature, and conflictual. Throughout the story, she comes to show that with maturity comes compassion.
According to Joyce Carol Oates, Sylvia Plath, an extraordinary yet discouraging poet who has published pieces of poetry that have a heartbreaking quality about them. I agree, simply because it is in fact true. Plath has had a disturbing history of imagery situated in her poems. “Mirror,” “The Times are Tidy,” “Child,” “Poppies in July,” and many more. Within in one of my favorite poems, “Mirror,” Plath experiments by telling the hidden story of this piece of poetry in the mirror’s point of view.
Plath is in fact the female foil to this biblical figure, and through the chaos and loneliness her husband, father, and friends cultivate, she is ultimately driven to suicide. However, despite her attempts, the poet unfailingly rises from her deathbed to confront an increasingly harsher world. Similar to Plath, singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell introduces themes of turmoil and confusion, specifically in her 1971 album Blue, in which she considers her complex relationship with the man she loves. Written during Mitchell’s trip to Europe, Blue includes the songs “All I Want” and “California,” both of which encapsulate Mitchell’s journey away from her lover as well as evoke the same sense of isolation that Plath conjures in ‘Lady Lazarus.’ Blue, while arguably Mitchell’s most poignant album, is not her only collection to share themes with Plath. Within their respective works, Sylvia Plath and Joni Mitchell explore tortuous relationships, loss of self, dissolution, and at times hope thus expressing their unique and dysfunctional realities; however, whereas Mitchell presents a gloomy world, heavy with
Her way of showing it just happened to be strange. It involved bashing her with wooden spoons and words at various intervals.” (Zusak Page 35). The love shown by both Rosa and Hans was most certainly reciprocated by Leisel, especially in their final moments, “In her final visions, she saw her three children, her grandchildren, her husband, and the long list of lives that merged with hers. Among them, lit like lanterns, were Hans and Rosa Hubermann…” (Page 544). This quote shows Liesel looking back on her long life at her beloved foster parents, Rosa and Hans, with affection after losing them in the war many years prior.
In the Lady Lazarus, Sylvia Plath demonstrates an allusion between her life and the Holocaust; the mass murder of some European Jews by the German Nazi regime during the Second World War. Jews were a less important race, an alien threat to German racial purity and community, to the Nazi leader Adolf Hitler. Plath makes a parallel with her emotional suffering to the jews physical suffering and deaths. By doing this she incarnates their hardship to her own. For example, she describes her face as a “Nazi lampshade” and as a “jew linen”.
In “ Blizzard” Sylvia Plath shows us the ritual a woman practices every day by looking into a mirror.The author gives the mirror a voice for it to communicate its thoughts across to us. Sylvia Plath uses imagery figures of speech and symbolism to show us that everyone will be forced to face the truth of aging , and death which in the end is inevitable. The author uses particularly strong figures of speech to show us the perspective of a mirror in a such a way, which is easy for us to relate to. The honesty of the mirror is proven to us with the lines “Just as it is, unmisted by love or dislike. I am not cruel, only truthful.” The mirror has only one job which is to show the truth, even if the person on the other side disagrees with it.
Sylvia Plath, born October 27, 1932 in Boston, Massachusetts, was a poet, and short-story writer (Hobsbaum, 2003). As part of the Confessionalist movement, she commonly wrote about topics such as death, depression and victimization. She has published a series of poems and a semi-autobiographical memoir that depicts her life, with the names of people and places changed. Her semi-autobiographical memoir, The Bell Jar, depicts Esther Greenwood’s slow downward spiral to madness. Plath was deeply affected by the premature death of her father, her mental instability being worsened by the absence of her mother.
As a confessional writer, Plath openly addresses issues and topics that were never discussed publicly before. Plath incorporates her own voice into her works, and therefore her depression impacts her work greatly. While “Critics praised her imaginative, direct verse, that was sometimes witty and at other moments somber.” (Kort), critics lacked the knowledge that Plath herself suffered from the sorrow that appears works. For example, in The Bell Jar, Esther Greenwood turns a drunken friend to the curb, despite her pleas for aid. She “decided [decides] the only thing to do was to dump her on the carpet and shut and lock [her] door and go back to bed”.