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 Mistress" by Andrew Marvell, in comparison to the ***** "When I am dead my dearest" by ***** Rossetti one can see that, although both explore a similar theme of the transience of human sexual life and physical, romantic love ***** the face of mortality each poet approaches this theme in very different ways, based on the gendered ***** ***** each 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 of ***** Oxford Movement Christina Rossetti. Marvell lived an active ***** as a court poet, soldier, and adventurer. ***** lived a quiet and retiring life at home, ***** did most women of her day, although she was intim*****ely involved in the pre-Raphaelite movement spearheaded by her brot*****, Dante Gabriel Rossetti. (Marsh, 1995)

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

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

***** the poet states, his mind is constantly filled ***** thoughts of ***** impending dem*****e, and of the shortness ***** human life, both his own and his mistresses.' at my back ***** al***** 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 song; then worms shall try

That long-preserved virginity,

And your quaint ho*****r turn to dust,

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

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

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

***** contrast, Rossetti *****gins her poem with these lines. "When I am dead ***** *****, sing no sad songs for me." In contrast to the ***** speaker ***** ********** poem, ***** accepts death ***** how ***** ends love and ***** ***** 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 ple*****ures with rough strife

T*****ough the iron gates of life:

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

Stand still, yet ***** will ***** him run.

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

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