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The Raven

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  1. The Raven By Edgar Allen Poe

  2. Elements of Poetry to examine: SPEAKER: the voice telling the poem SYMBOL: a person, place, thing, or event that stands for something else RHYTHM: the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables THEME: the poem’s meaning or main idea DICTION: the poet’s word choice FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE: metaphor, simile, personification, hyperbole MOTIF: reoccurrence of a word, phrase, or image in service of theme

  3. According to Poe: “Beauty must be the atmosphere and essence of a poem, and beauty’s tone is sadness” “Beauty, of whatever kind, invariably excites the sensitive soul to tears.” “Melancholy, then, is the most legitimate of all poetic tones.” from The Philosophy of Composition

  4. Poe’s “The Raven” relies heavily on sound devices for effect. These include (but are not limited to): ALLITERATION: repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words INTERNAL RHYME: a rhyme that occurs within a line REFRAIN: a phrase or line that is regularly repeated, usually at the end of a stanza ASSONANCE: repetition of vowel sounds METER: a generally regular patter of stressed and unstressed syllables In “The Raven”, these sound devices create a hypnotic effect as the speaker descends into an increasingly irrational world. This almost creates a “shared” state of hallucination

  5. Rhythm (revisited) A. Verse Rhyming verse Blank verse (has rhythm, usually iambic pentameter, but has no rhyme) Free verse (has no regular rhythm or rhyme ) B. Rhythm Poetic foot (a combination of stressed and unstressed syllables) anapest (~~/ ) iamb ( ~/) spondee (//) dactyl ( /~~) trochee ( /~ )   Meter (the number of poetic feet in a line of poetry) dipody (2 feet) triameter (3 feet) tetrameter (4 feet) pentameter (5 feet) octameter (8 feet)

  6. Now—while listening to Christopher Walken narrate “The Raven” consider the elements to analyze and appreciate this poem. http://instruct.uwo.ca/mit/204f/audio/raven.mp3