POEM - 1 Composition II Craig Crowder Detachment From Human Suffering In the poem"Musee des Beaux Arts W H Auden introduces the theme of how people

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1 Composition II Craig Crowder March 12, 2007 Detachment From Human Suffering In the poem “Musee des Beaux Arts,” W. H. Auden introduces the theme of how people feel of others’ suffering through the paintings of Pieter Brueghel with the use of imagery and symbolism. In his poem, Auden proposes how man feels about the anguish of others. He agrees that we cannot feel the sorrow of others, but when we realize someone is in pain how do we detach ourselves from that situation. He uses three of Brueghel’s paintings to portray these feelings of indifference towards others. Because he uses painting the reader may not necessarily see, he paints a literary picture help visualize the situations. The first four lines of the poem introduce the author’s theme of human suffering and provide a plausible justification as to why humans seem detached from each other’s feelings. “About suffering they were never wrong, | The Old Masters: how well they understood| Its human position; how it takes place| While someone else is eating or opening a window or dust walking dully along;”(1-4). “The Old Masters” refer to the painters of the renaissance. They understood that one cannot physically or emotionally feel the suffering of someone else. He uses very tedious, everyday activities to illustrate how one person could be in so much pain while others are eating, opening a window, or walking down the street. The author uses these activities to emphasize how humans are so unaware of each
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2 other’s hardships. The fact that humans do not feel, and are therefore unaware
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This note was uploaded on 04/09/2008 for the course LANDSCAPE 001 taught by Professor Brittenum during the Spring '08 term at Arkansas.

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POEM - 1 Composition II Craig Crowder Detachment From Human Suffering In the poem"Musee des Beaux Arts W H Auden introduces the theme of how people

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