English 1022E Lecture Notes - My Last Duchess, Dramatic Monologue, Rachel Mcadams

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16 Nov 2011
english lecture november 4, 2010
“My Last Duchess” by Robert Browning
On Board:
Enjambment or Enjambement
Caesura or Pause
Trasyllabic or Heroic Couplets
pairs of iambic pentameter)
Trochee: falling rhythm (strong stress, weak stress) Rachel McAdams
Iambic: rising rhythm
pyrrhic: soft
spondee: hard
LOOKing as IF she WERE alIVE. i CALL
that PIECE a SONder, NOW.
toGETHer DOWN, SIR NAY, we’ll GO
(all caps means that there’s a strong stress, lowercase weak stress)
Robert Langbaum, The Poetry of Experience
Dramatic Monologue Characteristics
1. Speaker who is not the poet
2. Listener who is other than the reader
3. An occasion or event
4. Interplay between speaker and reader
5. Tension between attraction and repulsion
tetrameter, pentameter, hexameter (most common) 4,5,6
My Last Duchess
-published in 1842, just after Queen Victoria became Queen
-a time when women dressed in crinolines and concealed their body, very
hierarchialized culture. men went to their clubs and smoked.
-1815 Congress of Vienna set in place new European Order.
-Time of great formality and a time when things are going to burst out because people
can’t be repressed for very long
-What was the effect for poetry? Writers were asked not to write about anything
disturbing to families, social orders, nothing that would upset young women. No sex, no
violence, no insanity.
-Push them down and away out of the realm of poetry
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