Analysis Of Homage To My Hips

Decent Essays
For thousands of years, women are expected to conform to the roles each society gives to them. In “Homage to My Hips,” written by Lucille Clifton, the speaker expresses her love for her body, even though her big hips don’t fit other people’s standards. The speaker explains the confidence she feels, which all women can relate to. “Cosmetics Do No Good,” written by Steve Kowit, has a speaker who feels the need to conform to the roles that society gives to women. The speaker attempts to satisfy other people rather than being comfortable in her own skin. Both Clifton and Kowit develop their speaker’s identities by using symbolism, repetition, hyperbole, and simile in order to portray how women have different notions about their own body.
“Homage to My Hips” includes a woman who openly discusses her body in a loving way. The poem starts off with “these hips are big hips,” which already lets the reader know the speaker has a large body; however, the poet uses repetition to develop the identity of a confident, positive female. The constant recurrence of the term “these hips are” makes it a mantra, which reinforce ideas. This form of repetition in lines 1, 5, 11, and 12 emphasizes the sense of the speaker’s independence. The poet also uses symbolism to cultivate the speaker’s personality. In lines 4-6, it states, “they don’t fit into little/ petty places. these hips/ are free hips,” (Clifton). The speaker doesn’t care if her body neglects to meet society’s standards for women nor is
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