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 of the inevitable nature of death

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

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

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

***** the poet states, his mind is constantly filled with thoughts of his impending demise, and of the shortness of ***** life, ***** ***** own and his mistresses.' at my back ***** al***** hear

***** wingèd chariot hurrying near;

And yonder *****l be*****e us lie

Deserts of vast eternity.

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

Thy beauty shall no more be found,

Nor, in thy marble vault, shall sound

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

***** long-preserved virginity,

And your quaint honor turn to dust,

And in***** ashes all my lust:

The grave's a fine and private place,

But none, I think, do t*****e embrace.

In *****, ***** *****gins her poem with these lines. "When I am dead my dearest, sing no sad songs for me." *****n contrast to the masculine speaker ***** *****'s poem, Rossetti accepts death and how death ends love and human ***** desire, rat***** than desiring to, as Marvell does:

Let us roll all our strength and all

Our sweetness up into one ball,

And tear our pleasures ***** rough strife

Thorough ***** iron gates of life:

*****, though we cannot make our sun

Stand still, yet we will make him run.

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


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