Essay - Gender Criticism of Poetry: to His Coy Mistress' by Andrew...


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Gender Criticism of Poetry:

To his Coy Mistress" by Andrew Marvell versus "When I am dead my dearest" by Christiana Rossetti—A masculine defiance of mortality through sexuality, a female acceptance ***** the inevitable nature of death

When examining ***** poem "To ***** Coy *****" by ***** Marvell, in comparison to the ***** "When I am ***** my dearest" by Christiana Rossetti one can see that, although both explore a similar theme of the transience of human sexual life and physical, romantic love in the face of mortality each poet approaches this ********** in very different ways, based on the gendered ***** ***** each author towards sexual c*****gress and religious faith. At first, it might seem to be unfair ***** compare the male Cavalier poet with the Victorian member of the Oxford Movement Christina Rossetti. Marvell lived an active ***** as a court *****, soldier, and adventurer. ***** ***** a quiet and retiring life at home, as did most women of her day, ***** she w***** intim*****ely involved in ***** pre-Raphaelite movement spearheaded by her brot*****, Dante Gabriel Rossetti. (Marsh, 1995)

However, both poems take the form ***** apostrophes or addresses in the mind of the poet, to an absent lover. Rossetti's alternative title for her work is "song" or a lyric voice to the *****'s lover after her death, while Andrew Marvell's speaker in "To His Coy Mistress" *****vokes "Petrarchan convention, a poetic mode origin*****ting in ***** fourteenth century ***** which a m*****le lover uses exaggerated metaphors to appeal to his female beloved." (Ephraim, p.1)

Yet in contrast ***** Rossetti, Marvell begs his beloved to engage in a tryst with him bec*****use ***** the transient ***** of human life. Through sexuality, Marvell states, human beings may avoid or at least ***** defy death.

As ***** poet states, his mind is constantly filled ***** thoughts of h***** impending demise, and of t*****e sh*****tness of ***** life, both his own and his mistresses.' at my back I always hear

Time's wingèd chariot hurrying near;

And yonder all be*****e us lie

Deserts of vast eternity.

***** poem's most famous lines are:

Thy beauty shall no more be found,

*****, in thy marble vault, shall sound

My echoing *****; then worms shall try

***** long-preserved virginity,

And your quaint honor turn to dust,

***** in***** a*****s all my lust:

***** grave's a fine ********** private place,

But none, I think, do there embrace.

In contr*****t, ***** *****gins her poem with these lines. "When I am dead ***** de*****st, sing no sad songs for me." *****n contrast to the ***** speaker ***** Marvell's poem, Rossetti accepts death and how ***** ends love and human ***** desire, ra*****r than desiring to, as Marvell does:

Let us roll all our strength and *****

Our sweetness up into one ball,

And tear our pleasures ***** rough strife

********** the iron gates of life:

**********, though we can*****t make our sun

Stand still, yet we will make him run.

In comparing these two apostrophic poems to the *****'s lovers,

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