Critical Analysis of Anne Sexton's Cinderella Essay

1290 WordsFeb 19, 20116 Pages
Trusha Agashi Professor Rebekah Starnes English 252 January 24,2011 Despondently Ever After… In the familiar more traditional version, Cinderella is a poor maid girl that, with the help of fairy godmother, gets a chance to meet prince charming. They fall in love, get married, and live happily ever after, and then what? What is a happily ever after? Is this even a realistic thought? In the dark comedic poem Cinderella, Anne Sexton forces the reader to examine this question. Utilizing literary devices such as tone, imagery, and style, Sexton encourages the reader to think about how silly and unlikely a fairy tale ending actually is. Sexton’s take on the story Cinderella is not based off of the well renowned Disney version, but rather…show more content…
The prince has every girl in the kingdom try on the slipper. Once the prince arrived at Cinderella’s house her two stepsisters immediately did whatever they needed to do to get their feet to fit in the slipper. The first one cut off her toe, and the second cut off her heel. When Cinderella came out, because it was her slipper, her foot slipped right in. On the day of the wedding the two stepsisters came and tried to benefit from Cinderella’s good fortune, but pigeons came and pecked their eyes out, punishing them to be blind for the rest of their lives for the malicious way they treated Cinderella. We assume that Cinderella and the prince marry, and of course, lived happily ever after. From the start of the poem Sexton sets a sardonic or caustic tone saying, “You always read about it,” implying that as an audience we always assume this is how it happens. She then continues by listing off rags to riches stories. She mentions the plumber, nursemaid, milkman, and charwomen, all of whom, in some unlikely circumstance go from poor to wealthy. Though we know the chances that these occurrences will actually happen are one-in-a-million, everyone is still searching for the happy ending. Sexton continues to convey her cynical ideas when she says “Next came the ball, as you all know” and “That’s the way with stepmothers.” In both examples she

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