Poetry Analyses (2) - ENG 112-075 Poetry Analyses The...

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ENG 112-075Lindsay HarmonPoetry AnalysesMay 7, 2008“The Market Economy” by Marge Piercy“The Market Economy,” written by poet and social cause activist Marge Piercy, isfree verse, with no rhyme or rhythm, and possesses very few poetic devices.Piercy wasborn in 1936, and grew up during the rise of capitalism and the New Deal in the U.S.,which suggests that her intended speaker is a mother in search of work during wejrowiejf.The speaker could also be Piercy herself.The tone of the poem is relatively consistent throughout.Marge’s topic matter aswell as her selection of blatant words creates a gloomy, morose, depressing,disheartening tone.It seems to me that this tone reflects the attitude of American societyjust after the Great Depression: “You’ve been out of work for a year and they’re hiring atthe plastics factory.”Although the tone is consistent throughout the poem, there is acontradiction in argument from the first stanza to the second stanza.Piercy uses mostly denotative words in “The Market Economy,” which sheintends to be perceived by dictionary definition.The only connotative expression I cameacross in the poem is “Smog City,” referring negatively to a capitalist nation full offactories that produce hazardous, harmful waste.The short poem is broken up into only two stanzas.The first lays blatantly laysout the harsh truth about the various health affects the capitalist economy can have onsociety.She argues that capitalism is harmful by laying out her examples in ahypothetical manner, but in reality, these things that she’s talking about really do happen.The author almost contradicts her arguments in the first stanza by claiming in the secondstanza that it’s virtually impossible to stay away from a capitalist economy in order to besuccessful in life.She does this by presenting questions: “But where else will you work?Where else can you rent but Smog City?”In other words, she is questioning, what otheroption/choice do we have but be a part of capitalism?The poem lacks any sort ofparticular rhythm, but the shift or change in ideas from the first stanza to the secondstanza provides for an appealing message to the audience.“The Market Economy” also contains very few figures of speech as I found nosimiles in the poem at all.Piercy presents much of the first stanza in a way that appearsto be metaphorical, but is actually a horrifying, deliberate truth.She writes, “you canhave polyvinyl cups and wash and wear suits but it will cost you your left lung rottedwith cancer,” and she also seems to use “Smog City” as a metaphorical item.Byproviding these blatant examples to argue that capitalism is causing harm to consumerhealth, her warrant is backed up effectively.“Smog City” also serves as a symbol

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Term
Fall
Professor
PETERSEN
Tags
Poetry, Capitalism, Free Verse, Rhythm, Marge Piercy, capitalist economy

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