Stevie Smith And Marriage Research Paper Essay

Stevie Smith And Marriage Essay, Research Paper

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Stevie and Marriage: Foreword

Florence & # 8220 ; Stevie & # 8221 ; Smith grew up in unstable household conditions - Stevie Smith And Marriage Research Paper Essay introduction. Her household was falling apart, and she observed every minute with muted animadversion. These pent-up feelings can be seen in her poesy. Her unfortunate childhood experiences attribute to a mistrustful, misanthropic tone in her verse form & # 8220 ; Marriage I Think. & # 8221 ;

For beginnings I have consulted three separate degrees of libraries. At the high school library I found a series called Critical Survey Of Poetry that has been most helpful in supplying background information on Smith, every bit good as critical reappraisals of some of her verse forms. The Shippensburg Public Library every bit good as the Bosler Library has provided a aggregation of Smith & # 8217 ; s subsequently verse forms ( of which I chose my focal point verse form ) called Me Again, every bit good as The Norton Anthology Of Literature By Women that has helped with happening out about Smith & # 8217 ; s childhood and other biographical information. The Dickinson College Library has been most helpful. There I checked out Stevie Smith, In Search of Stevie Smith, and Stevie, all of which contain huge sums of research into her childhood and younger old ages as related to her ulterior verse form, therefore supplying a wealth of both unfavorable judgment and biographical information. I have besides consulted legion web sites to look for her verse forms and other information, but with really small success.

I have two chief subdivisions to my paper, excepting my debut and decision. The first subdivision contains information about Smith & # 8217 ; s position of the establishment of matrimony. This subdivision provides grounds from the focal point verse form, Smith & # 8217 ; s friends, every bit good as her ain life. The 2nd subdivision of my paper contains information sing the manner in which she saw work forces or interacted with them as a consequence of her childhood. It has grounds from her farther literary plants, her ain life, every bit good as interviews with friends.

Stevie and Marriage

Florence & # 8220 ; Stevie & # 8221 ; Smith grew up in unstable household conditions. Her household was falling apart, and she observed every minute with muted animadversion. These pent-up feelings can be seen in her poesy. Her unfortunate childhood experiences attribute to a mistrustful, misanthropic tone in her verse form & # 8220 ; Marriage I Think. & # 8221 ;

Smith & # 8217 ; s poem & # 8220 ; Marriage I Think & # 8221 ; contains many mentions to her belief that the bond of matrimony between a adult male and a adult female is deceitful, peculiarly for the adult female. Her poem reads,

Marriage I think

For adult females

Is the best of opiates

It kills the ideas

That think about the ideas,

It is the best of opiates.

( lines 1-6 )

By comparing matrimony ( for adult females ) to a mind-numbing narcotic, Smith clearly uses a pessimistic tone. She contends that the matrimonial bond, contrary to popular belief, hurts adult females on the interior. In 1906 4-year-old Smith, her sick female parent Ethel, sister Molly, and aunt Margaret are deserted by her male parent Charles, the chief support of the household. Charles grows bored with the matrimony, and suddenly sets out on his childhood dream of going a naval officer ( Sternlicht 4 ) . At this point, Smith & # 8217 ; s household of four adult females, including two kids and a ill female parent, are left to fend for themselves, with the attention of Smith & # 8217 ; s aunt. In another one of Smith & # 8217 ; s poems entitled & # 8220 ; Papa Love Baby, & # 8221 ; she writes that she & # 8220 ; wished mamma hadn & # 8217 ; t made such a foolish marriage./ & # 8230 ; it showed in my eyes unfortunately/And a two weeks subsequently papa ran off to sea & # 8221 ; ( Barbera and McBrien 9 ) . As she grows up in a preponderantly feminine family, Smith dwells on her male parent & # 8217 ; s household abandonment. She jokes that & # 8220 ; for many, matrimony is a opportunity clasp upon a hen-coop in middle Atlantic & # 8221 ; ( Barbera and McBrien 65 ) . The grounds in the verse form points to feelings of solitariness and forsaking. Smith besides wrote in her verse form & # 8220 ; Every Lovely Limb & # 8217 ; s a Desolation & # 8221 ; about adult females who are caught up in dead-end relationships fussing over solitariness ( Magill 3075 ) . The grounds from & # 8220 ; Marriage I Think & # 8221 ; shows that subsequently in her life, she focused on the forsaking of her female parent in a purportedly sacred matrimony. Smith grew up in an England where adult females were to back up and subject to the furthering of work forces, but & # 8220 ; broke out of that trap, non with a powerful rebellious push of a blade, but subversively, with the stealing of oil ( Stevie Smith 16 ) . In her adulthood, Smith maintained a composure, inactive outside. & # 8220 ; Inwardly she laughed, cried, seethed, suffered, and defended & # 8216 ; self & # 8217 ; & # 8221 ; ( Sternlicht 24 ) . No affair how much she resisted the female stereotype, Smith was non in the least a women’s rightist. Rather, & # 8220 ; Stevie fought the ancient conflict against male control entirely and in the lone manner she could: by being herself & # 8221 ; ( Stevie Smith 105 ) . After turning up cognizing the harsh reali

ty of an detached hubby, Smith realizes that a matrimony is nil more than a mental narcotic that dulls a woman’s perceptual experience of world.

Smith & # 8217 ; s realisation of matrimony as a fraud leads to loneliness and heartbreak in her life, most of which stems from her male parent & # 8217 ; s abandonment. & # 8220 ; Stevie nursed a womb-to-tomb bitterness against her male parent. She took the abandonment personally, and it made her leery of work forces and their committednesss ( Stevie Smith 2 ) . Evidence of this score can be found in Smith & # 8217 ; s womb-to-tomb devotedness to poesy.

But excessively long in purdah she & # 8217 ; vitamin D dwelt,

And excessively long her ideas had felt

Their strength. So when the adult male drew nigh,

Out popped her ideas and covered him with fright.

( lines 8-11 )

Within Smith & # 8217 ; s authorship, a clear and ominously lonely tone appeared. She maily wrote with three separate voices: a kid, an stripling, and a lonely old adult female, but the lonely old adult female seems to talk the loudest in such verse forms ( Stevie Smith 101 ) . Finally a beam of hope dawned on the skyline in the signifier of a German who Smith became aquainted with. Even after this love affair was dashed because of a war, Smith met another male child named Eric Armitage. Unfortunately Armitage was looking for a conventional married woman, which Smith practically detested, so they went their separate ways ( Stevie Smith 6 ) . In her book Novel On Yellow Paper, she describes their wooing & # 8220 ; like a game that has no significance but to play we are engaged & # 8230 ; and in our Black Marias we are get downing to believe: Never ne’er can we get married & # 8221 ; ( Barbera and McBrien 59 ) . Throughout all of these relationship catastrophes, Smith has one solid relationship that she relies on. This pillar of friendly relationship is based around her Aunt & # 8220 ; Lion & # 8221 ; whom she was cared for by as a kid. In an interview Peter Orr, Smith talks about this relationship. & # 8220 ; I live with an aunt who is 90. I & # 8217 ; m really fond of her, but we live entirely & # 8221 ; ( Sternlicht 37 ) . Finally Smith learns to accept the manner adult females are treated in her society. She goes on to compose in her verse form,

Better that she had kept her ideas on a concatenation,

For now she & # 8217 ; s entirely once more and all in hurting ;

She sighs for the adult male that went and the ideas that stay

To problem her dreams by dark and her dreams by twenty-four hours.

( lines 13-16 )

Through credence, Smith sees her life for what it truly is due to her picks. However, & # 8220 ; she did non expect the solitariness waiting in the middle-age desert of biological singlehood & # 8221 ; ( Sternlicht 8 ) . This solemn nothingness has a important impact on Smith, but she remains firm. Even after staring over the huge barren of this desert, Smith regains a sense of endurance that her & # 8220 ; archly crafted, strongly equivocal poetic public presentation strives to negociate & # 8221 ; ( Sternlicht 110 ) .

The mistrustful, misanthropic tone in Stevie Smith & # 8217 ; s poem & # 8220 ; Marriage I Think & # 8221 ; is a consequence of her alone childhood fortunes. This tone can be traced back to conceal feelings from a immature age, in which Smith observed the atrocious state of affairs of her environment. Smith is one of many poets that rely on stripling experiences to pass on maintained attitudes.

Appendix

& # 8220 ; Marriage I Think & # 8221 ;

by Stevie Smith

Marriage I think

For adult females

Is the best of opiates.

It kills the ideas

That think about the ideas,

It is the best of opiates.

So said Maria.

But excessively long in purdah she & # 8217 ; vitamin D dwelt,

And excessively long her ideas had felt

Their strength. So when the adult male drew nigh,

Out popped her ideas and covered him with fright.

Poor Maria!

Better that she had kept her ideas on a concatenation,

For now she & # 8217 ; s entirely once more and all in hurting ;

She sighs for the adult male that went and the ideas that stay

To problem her dreams by dark and her dreams by twenty-four hours.

600

Barbera, Jack, and William McBrien. Me Again: Uncollected Hagiographas of Stevie Smith. New York: Farrar Straus Giroux. 1981.

Barbera, Jack, and William McBrien. Stevie: A Biography of Stevie Smith. New York: Oxford University Press. 1987.

Gilbert, Sandra M. , and Susan Gubar. The Norton Anthology Of Literature By Women: The Tradition in English. New York: W. W. Norton & A ; Company. 1985.

Magill, Frank N.. Critical Survey Of Poetry. Vol. 6. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Salem Press. 1992.

Sternlicht, Sanford. In Search Of Stevie Smith. Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press. 1991.

Sternlicht, Sanford. Stevie Smith. Boston, Massachusetts: Twayne Publishers. 1990.

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