My Last Duchess and Porphyria Seminar.pdf - Seminar...

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Seminar Questions For “My Last Duchess” and “Porphyria’s Lover” You will prepare at least two strong responses for an in-class seminar. Make sure you include specific references to the poem, and you have a full understanding of the poems. Please see the seminar rubric on D2L. Response My Last Duchess "She had A heart--how shall I say?--too soon made glad, Too easily impressed; she liked whate’er She looked on, and her looks went everywhere.” (21-24) The Duke felt that his wifes pleasing and kind attitude was stubborn and solicitous. To the Duke it seemed that every man that passed his wife was receiving an intimate and seductive glance even though she was just smiling and being a kind woman, and the Duke did not like this. It seems as though her kind attitude opposes against the societal norms of the Victorian era. She is not quiet, nor submissive, but a modern and strong woman that will not change her personality, and continues to smile. The Duke had not wanted her to smile to anyone but himself emphasizing his selfish behaviour. “Oh sir, she smiled, no doubt, Whene'er I passed her; but who passed without Much the same smile? This grew; I gave commands; Then all smiles stopped together.” (43-46) The smile the Duchess gave another man arose an anger so deep in the Duke that he commanded to have her killed, stopping the smiles all together. His jealousy stemmed from the lack of control he had over his wife resulting in her death. The Duke saw this as a chance to finally have the utmost control over her, in the painting, this way she can no longer go against his ideals of what a wife should be. His controlling nature clouded his morality and love for his wife, showing his true nature of the jealous and sadistic person he truly is. The Duke's selfish characteristics only furthered this. He feels as if he is of such high standing power that he is not to be bothered by annoyances such as his so called disobedient wife. He will not stoop below his hierarchical power to even tell his wife to stop her behaviour that is upsetting him. Instead he commands someone to kill her because even the acts of killing her are beneath him; it would mean he has to care in order of doing so. Porphyria’s Lover “That moment she was mine, mine, fair, Perfectly pure and good: I found A thing to do, and all her hair In one long yellow string I wound Three times her little throat around,
And strangled her. No pain felt she; I am quite sure she felt no pain.”” (36-42) These lines are revealed to be shocking. I had expected the speaker to either reject or accept Porphyria's love, but I was not expecting for the speaker to commit a heinous crime out of his anxiousness. But it does make sense. Out of this heinous act, he now has complete control over her which he did not did before. Porphyrias is considered a strong-willed woman. She has chosen her own desires over the social constraint of society when indulging in them. But once she gave into

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