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Presentation on theme: "Medusa."— Presentation transcript:

1 Medusa

2 Read the poem…

3 Stanza One Dramatic Monologue
The suspicion appears to be about an unfaithful lover – Duffy has recreated the myth by giving psychological reasons for her physical change Based on the Greek Myth A suspicion, a doubt, a jealousy grew in my mind, which turned the hairs on my head to filthy snakes as though my thoughts hissed and spat on my scalp. This poem could be read from the perspective of any scorned woman = extended metaphor Onomatopoeia and alliteration Medusa was a priestess for Athena who was seduced by Poseidon. Athena was so angry that she turned her into a Gorgon so that if she looked at a man she would turn them to stone.

4 Stanza Two Sibilance My bride’s breath soured, stank
in the grey bags of my lungs. I’m foul mouthed now, foul tongued, yellow fanged. There are bullet tears in my eyes. Are you terrified? Plosive alliteration

5 Stanza Three imperative Be terrified. It’s you I love,
perfect man, Greek God, my own; but I know you’ll go, betray me, stray from home. So better by for me if you were stone. She wants him to be stone so he physically can’t leave – possessive love She loves him, yet is terrified he will leave her

6 Stanza Four I glanced at a buzzing bee, a dull grey pebble fell
to the ground. I glanced at a singing bird, a handful of dusty gravel spattered down The speaker is demonstrating her powers

7 Stanza Five Why do you think she uses the swear word ‘shit’ instead of the more polite ‘poo’? I looked at a ginger cat, a housebrick shattered a bowl of milk. I looked at a snuffling pig, a boulder rolled in a heap of shit. The speaker is demonstrating her powers

8 Stanza Six The speaker’s power has grown I stared in the mirror.
Love gone bad showed me a Gorgon. I stared at a dragon. Fire spewed from the mouth of a mountain. In the last three stanzas the verbs have become stronger – glanced – looked – stared, why do you think this is? In the last three stanzas, note the half-rhyme – what does it suggest?

9 Stanza Seven And here you come
with a shield for a heart and a sword for a tongue and your girls, your girls. Wasn’t I beautiful Wasn’t I fragrant and young? This stanza addresses Perseus directly (from the myth). He is prepared to fight her and is protected In the last two lines of this stanza, Medusa’s sadness seems to be the same as most women’s – fading beauty and looks

10 Stanza Eight Simple and direct language is used throughout the poem
Look at me now. This is ambiguous – if we do look at her we’ll be turned to stone however, we are almost tricked into looking at her through sympathy

11 In the poem Myth and modern age are mixed
The poem has a timeless quality – beauty is still a concern nowadays Her suspicions and jealousy have turned her physically ugly Her ability to love has destroyed her through the male’s betrayal The poem shows psychological depth, the inability to love through fear of abandonment

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