Analysis of Poems 'Eurydice' and 'Mrs. Midas' by Carol-Ann Duffy

1020 words 5 pages
Analyse how a writer used language to strengthen your understanding of their ideas.
“Behind every great man is a woman.” The famous saying reflected through countless couples over the course of history, Barack Obama and his wife Michelle, Alexander the Great and his Mother Olympias, and Prince Charles and Princess Diana. However this famous saying not only reflects the success of a man, but also how a woman is always “behind” a man. Behind the scenes is where a woman has spent most of her time, with a substantial focus on ‘history’ not ‘herstory’. A woman’s voice, her opinion and her viewpoint have all been heavily disregarded in the past centuries, with a woman being seen as an accessory to a man rather than an individual with the
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Duffy uses language to design Mrs. Midas’ character as a pretentious housewife trying to be in a higher social class than she is. Through subtle sentences like “We’d a caravan in the wilds, in a glade of its own” where she brags that her caravan has its own glade, gives Mrs. Midas a pretentious attitude. Additionally Duffy uses assonance in “He asked where was the wine…a fragrant bone dry white wine from Italy…” with a long ‘I’ sound slowing the pace and creating a genteel sound that mimics the middle class accent. However Duffy uses the language feature of diction to change the nature of the poem. From smooth, rolling words of imagery – “…as he picked up the glass, goblet, golden chalice, drank.” to direct, short, monosyllabic sentences -“He came into the house. The doorknobs gleamed.” The change of tone and following short sentences are used to show how through the surfacing anxiety of Mrs. Midas, she is able to carefully explain her every action with comments such as “I locked the cat in the cellar. I moved the phone. The toilet I didn’t mind.” The use of humour not only breaks down the barrier between the reader and herself, but also releases her previous pretentious attitudes. Yet looking through this use of humour, we can see how Mrs. Midas is still taking control of her situation which effectively place her in a more dominant and authoritative role in the relationship between herself and King Midas.
In both Mrs. Midas and Eurydice,

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