ENGB30 Lecture Notes - Sylvia Plath, Storge

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20 Nov 2012
Some Significant Innovations in Shelley’s Version of the Myth
Prometheus is freed, but not through reconciliation with
Jupiter falls from power
Invention of the Demogorgon
o Does not originate from Greek mythology
o Etymology: “demons” =world/earth; “gorgos” =
terrible/that which strikes terror into
In Shelley’s work, Demogorgon is described as follows:
o Equated with darkness/ gloom (1.207; 3.2.6)
o Self-identifies as “Eternity” (3.1.52)
o Self-identifies as the child of Jupiter (3.1.54)
Prometheus’ sense of personal wrong eclipsed by a greater
sense of cosmic wrong
Celebration of love
- Shelley begins by regretting; saying that he “takes back his words”
- familial love that overcomes the differences
- him forgiving Zeus is different from “giving–in to Jupiter’s demands
Ted Hughes (1930-1998)
- married to Sylvia Plath 1956-1963
- kick-ass Poet Laureate of Britain 1984-1998
Prometheus on his Crag
Begins with Prometheus regaining consciousness on his crag;
ends with Prometheus “easing free” his only action in the
Populated only by Prometheus, birds, vulture and lizard
Intense sense of repetition, of circular motion
o Repetition of “Prometheus on his crag…”
o Various explicit references to a return to where one
began (ex. 1;4;13;15;20)
Repetition of the vulture constantly returning
o Reference to Ecclesiastes (6)
Ecclesiastes 1:4-9
o Many recurring motifs
Sun; God; Birds; Earth; Vulture; Birth;
Poem 4 has reference to the vultures
Strong focus on Prometheus’s internal state
Read 2;5;8;10;11;13;16
o “spiral motion”- eventually get from point a to point b
o the recovery takes form in resignation
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