Emily Dickinson - She Rose to His Requirement
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“She Rose to His Requirement” – Images, Theme, and Relevance
Emily Dickinson is an extremely respected, renowned, and talented poet. Her poems contain images and some themes that are still relevant to today’s world. Her use of images aids readers in visualizing her theme. In She Rose to His Requirement, Dickinson depicts images of a young woman’s potential being denied through the theme of supposed female inferiority that still exists somewhat in the modern world.
The images that Emily Dickinson presents in She Rose to His Requirement are of a young woman about to be married and lose her characteristics in the process. “She rose to his requirement, dropped/The playthings of her life.” (ll. 1-2) The image that is presented in these lines is of a young woman that is about to get married, and drop her personal characteristics. Additional metaphoric images that are displayed are the pearl and the weed in the sea. “It lay unmentioned, as the sea/Develops pearl and weed.” (ll. 9-10) The image of a pearl is generally a precious development of nature, while weed’s image is not regarded as anything spectacular. Both the pearl and the weed are developed under the sea, but one is more precious than the other. In society, the pearl is man and the weed is woman. By comparing the woman in the poem to the weed in the sea, it shows that even if the woman has potential, her worth will remain unchanged.
Emily Dickinson is using She Rose to His Requirement to show what a woman has to give up when she is married.
If aught she missed in her new day
Of amplitude, or awe,
Or first prospective, or the gold
In using wore away,
It lay unmentioned… (ll. 5-9)
Dickinson discusses and gives examples of how a woman’s potential is less significant than that of a man’s. If the woman was unhappy with her marriage, she had to remain quiet; one of the things a woman has to give up after marriage is her opinion....
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