Unformatted text preview: Commentary - The Unknown Citizen Jacky Chong “The Unknown Citizen” by W. H. Auden, is a poem that consists of different kinds of people and organizations judging on the characteristics of our dear “Citizen”. From the first few sentences, we learn that the poem we are going to read is a documentation dedicated to “The Unknown Citizen”. The first line is not-so-friendly-sounding, which clearly establishes a tone of superiority and formality of the government. Written in third-person, the narrative mode of nearly omniscience and omnipotence, the narrator has access to every single detail (though they are all quite superficial) of the “citizen’s” life, reestablishing the superior tone. The poem conveys that the government knows everything about the “citizen’s” life, which is full of stirring “accomplishment”, except whether he was “free” and “happy”. The inscription on the monument, which is the poem, tells us almost nothing about the man whom it is dedicated to; instead, it tries...
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This note was uploaded on 12/31/2011 for the course LANG 111 taught by Professor Lancebeck during the Spring '11 term at Ave Maria.
- Spring '11