ength: 750 word minimum; 1,000 word maximum
In MLA format, write an essay about either Margaret Atwood's "Siren Song," "Variations on the word love," Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan," Percy Shelley's "Ozymandias," or John Donne's "Death be not Proud" based on one of the following writing prompts. Remember to include a topic sentence and thesis statement near the beginning of your essay and provide ample support for your assertions. Also be sure to properly reference your quotations and sources and to include a “Works Cited” page at the end of your essay.
Some topics you may wish to consider are:
1) "Variations of the word love" addresses the overuse and thus the dilution of the meaning of the word "love." The poem was originally published in 1974. Think about how the proliferation of the Internet and social media has since affected our use of language such as words like "love." Do you "love" your new phone? Do you "love" caramel macchiatos? Do you "love" your children, parents, spouse, boyfriend, or girlfriend? What does it mean to "love" an object as opposed to a person? Does the overuse or misuse of a word affect its meaning? Discuss the meaning of the word in the context of the poem.
2) Atwood's "Siren Song" is ironic on numerous levels. Discuss some of these ironies in the context of the speaker's implied gender. How are they significant? Irony itself doesn't really have any meaning, so how do these ironic situations in the text emphasize the meaning of the poem?
3) Shelley's "Ozymandias" is also a deeply ironic poem. The main focus here seems to be on the ephemeral nature of existence and the significance of life, death, and materialism. What does the poem have to say about these concepts? What is ironic here, and how does that irony work in the text?
4) Donne's "Death be not Proud" personifies Death. Why does Donne do this? What is the significance of this personification? Again, irony is heavily utilized here. What is the significance of the irony in relation to the topic? How does this technique assist in articulating the poem's message?
5) In many ways, "Kubla Khan" serves as social criticism. Lightly research 19th Century English culture and write an essay that discusses which aspects of 19th Century English society that the poem is specifically criticizing. What was England like at that time? What do you think were the social norms and conventions that the speaker in the poem is trying to subvert?
--For this assignment you should quote from the poem at least once, and the quotation must conform to MLA standards: the quotation should be properly introduced and grammatically correct with proper documentation in a “Works Cited” page at the end of the essay. If you choose to use secondary material, it must be quoted properly with proper documentation
Failure to do so constitutes plagiarism, a very serious offence. Copying sources from the internet and not citing them is plagiarism; paraphrasing without acknowledging the source is plagiarism; submitting work that you yourself did not do is also plagiarism. I have no tolerance for plagiarism and will always advocate the most severe penalties possible!
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