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In order to write effectively about poetry, one needs a clear idea of what the point of writing about poetry is.
When you are assigned an analytical essay about a poem in an English class, the goal of the assignment is usually to argue a specific thesis about the poem, using your analysis of specific elements in the poem and how those elements relate to each other to support your thesis.
Here are some examples of commonly discussed figures of speech: Cultural Context: How does the poem you are looking at relate to the historical context in which it was written? How does John Donne's devotional poetry relate to the contentious religious climate in seventeenth-century England?
For example, what's the cultural significance of Walt Whitman's famous elegy for Lincoln "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloomed" in light of post-Civil War cultural trends in the U. These questions may take you out of the literature section of your library altogether and involve finding out about philosophy, history, religion, economics, music, or the visual arts.
Writing about poetry can be one of the most demanding tasks that many students face in a literature class.
Poetry, by its very nature, makes demands on a writer who attempts to analyze it that other forms of literature do not.
It is useful to follow some standard conventions when writing about poetry.
First, when you analyze a poem, it is best to use present tense rather than past tense for your verbs.
Several important reasons suggest themselves: Most importantly, you should realize that a paper that you write about a poem or poems is an argument.
Make sure that you have something specific that you want to say about the poem that you are discussing.