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Comparing Cousin Kate and the Seduction

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    Comparing Cousin Kate and The Seduction Cousin Kate is a pre twentieth century poem, written in ballet style (set in verse0 in a very rural countryside. It was written by Christina Rosseti, her voice is that of a young woman working as a cottage maiden that falls in love with a lord and gets pregnant, and is then discarded for her cousin Kate who marries the lord. The second poem “the seduction” is a more modern poem with an urban setting, and is written in narrative form. The rhyme and rhythm is disjointed and irregular.

    A teenage girl goes to a party and leaves with a young man who gets her drunk and seduces her. Shortly after the young girl discovers she is pregnant as a result of this one night stand and her whole life is shattered. Both poems have many similarities although were in different eras. They are both about love and the exploitation of it. The voice in both poems is of the seduced, who were virgins before and now share the same sentiments of bitterness and public ridicule; however their feelings towards being pregnant were different.

    In the seduction the teenager was distraught when she realised she was pregnant. She tore up all her glossy magazines and broke the heels of her high white shoes, and cried that shed missed all the innocence of her teenage carefree years, now her future is bleak, her childhood gone, and her dreams of a successful future evaporated just like her deceitful lover. However, the cottage maiden in Cousin Kate sees her child as a consolation.

    In spite of the public ridicule she faces she loves her baby and to her he is a treasure and a great gift, she was even more protective of him because she knows Kate is infertile and the lord would give anything for a son. The age and class of the men are also very different, in Cousin Kate the man was an older important lord who choose Kate because he thought she was unsullied. In the seduction the boy was very common and ignorant “he spat into the river” and “fumbled in a bag”

    Both women let themselves be seduced for different reasons. In the seduction the girl was under the influence of alcohol and only knew the boy for a few hours. In Cousin Kate the maiden truly loved the lord. Both poems have the same gloomy and depressing mood but Cousin Kate lightens towards the end when she triumphantly expressed pride in her child and her satisfaction that the lord still wanted something belonging to her.

    For a modern reader the seduction is probably preferable because we can identify with the images more readily than with the more old fashioned language and images of Cousin Kate. The language in both poems is very different; Christina Rosseti used metaphors “might have been a dove. ” Eileen McAuley” uses modern slang such as “little slag. ” MLA Citation: “Comparing Cousin Kate and The Seduction. ” 123HelpMe. com. 15 Oct 2011 .

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