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Pathedy of Manners Essay

Decent Essays
PATHEDY OF MANNERS Although we all strive to obtain the best in life, we quickly learn that there is much more to life than just filling an empty void with luxuries. This is the prime theme in the narrative poem titled "Pathedy of Manners" by Ellen Kay. Kay uses strong imagery to describe this woman's superb lifestyle and the change of winds that occur as time passes. The woman in this story appears to be everyone's envy, however we quickly learn that perception is not always reality. Material things simply cannot fulfill and empty void of one's life. The poem begins with the author describing this perfect woman. As she goes on to say in line one, "At twenty she was brilliant and adored." The soft choice of words Kay choose create…show more content…
This woman instead did not keep her thoughts to herself and spoke her mind freely. This shows her liberation that sets her apart from the other, average women. The third stanza goes on to describe her continued success and accomplishments as time passes on. "She hung up her diploma, went abroad" as line 9 states, describes her graduation and the continuance of her education. She goes to a more refined, prestigious school abroad. This is symbolic to how much opportunity she has that has set her apart from others. She in fact continues her education as at that time most women probably did not. Lines ten through twelve, "Saw catalogues of domes and tapestry... learned to tell real Wedgwood from a fraud" depicts her extensive knowledge of all topics. She is exposed to lavish thing often such as tapestries and is so familiar with Wedgwood that it is practically of second nature to her. She returns back to her home and weds a man who is on par with her level. We can see that he also is successful and comes from an affluent background as Kay writes in line fourteen "A bright young man whose pearl cufflinks were real." We then learn about their ideal lifestyle they share together- an ideal marriage, an ideal house. But we learn that their children infact do not live an "ideal" life. Infact, they are "lonely children." Although this woman has many luxuries to keep her mind off her inner void,
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