Blues essay

Baldwin challenges the common beliefs of morality between white people and black people. With whites as the targeted audience, he associates his black characters with traits commonly associated with whites, such as “godliness, courage and braggadocio." [6] His white characters possess the weaknesses stereotypically attributed to blacks, such as “lust, lack of moral strength, and violence." [6] By situating his characters to reflect the opposite of what is expected by his audience, Baldwin places the viewers in a position to acknowledge the complexities of human nature. His restricting the white community to one dimension of human nature, as the white community does to blacks, compels the white audience to come face-to-face with how humanity may be stripped by the simple act of shrinking one’s complexities. [7]

The Mood in Funeral Blues by . Auden


The poem, "Funeral Blues", by . Auden tells about a
person's grief and is successful in creating a very sad and depressing
mood. This is achieved by the poet's use of language, word choice and
sentence structure. The way in which the author describes his feeling
- along with the use of rhythm and rhyme - was created in a very
effective way which made it clear to the reader.

In the first stanza the depressing mood is created straight away by
the poet's use of commands, which created the impression that he
wanted the whole world to come to a stand still:

"Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,

Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone"

These particular commands are demanding silence from everyone as he is
requesting silence from everyone as he wants the clocks to stop
ticking, the phone to stop ringing, the dog to be quiet and basically
every aspect of normal, everyday life to come to a halt. By doing this
the author has made it obvious that the person he has lost was his
whole world and he feels as if the world cannot go on anymore without
this person.

Auden also made effective use of rhythm and rhyme in order to
create the atmosphere, which exists at a funeral:

"…with muffled drum,

Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come."

By the use of the word 'muffled' I was given the impression of a
foggy, depressing and cold day with the coffin being removed from the
black hearse. I thought it to be effective when 'drum' was mentioned
as normally it is at state funerals for very important people where
drums are used. The impression I received was that it...


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...der to swallow pills. This is then continued as the next line
is telling of the complete despair that he feels and shows the lack of
hope and happiness he possesses:

"For nothing now can ever come to any good."

The use of the word nothing also shows he does not see a future for
himself anymore. As it is a short sentence and if you follow the
rhythm intended it is a drowsy beat which again extends the overdose
idea as it is him falling asleep and puts him out of his misery but at
the same time the ending remains sad and does not give a happy ending.

In conclusion, Funeral Blues by Auden was successful in creating a
very depressing mood that was full of despair and contained absolutely
no hope. This was effective by the use of simple language, sentence
structure and most importantly the use of rhythm and rhyme.
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Blues essay

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