Up the Wall Notes

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UP THE WALL WHAT THE POEM IS ABOUT - portrays domestic life in a suburban setting - stresses the tensions of that life as experienced by a wife and mother – her life is tedious and filled with petty crises - she finds no joy in her children, who are murderous in their behaviour, she feels “so alone” because she cannot have company because of them - in contrast her husband, who escapes this drudgery and turmoil in the home, thinks that the neighbourhood is “too quiet” - poem closes with the differences between husband and wife unresolved SUMMARY - every day is the same, full of drama and trauma - she has no comfort from anything, even the talk back radio - the mothers voice is heard repeatedly, which each of her…show more content…
ere authority is firmly in place SUMMARY - verbal onslaught monologue given by sergeant to his recruits - speaker demands absolute obedience from his men - abuses anyone who shows any signs of insubordination - regards them as idiots who need to be frightened into obedience - focuses on the damage that could be done to their genitalia if they are not alert to all the requirements of battle drill - closes his monologue by pointing out that inattention or inefficiency in the drill could cost them their lives STYLISTIC POINTS - Monologue – no broken up into stanzas because Dawe is trying to mirror the flow and pace of speech - Language is colloquial, sexist, racist, abusive and aggressive - Officers address is delivered like a gunshot, relentless, sharp and wounding - Rhetorical questions used where answer is implied in question “why are you looking at me are you queer?” - Language throughout is strong and confronting - Use of spacing in lines contributes to the sense of a monologue that needs to have particular emphasis and dramatic pauses ANALYSIS - Speaker of the poem is a drill-sergeant, shouting at a group of new soldiers - Negative tone of poem is established in the title, with its conception of men being trained to kill other men - Poem is in the form of a dramatic monologue - Through his dialogue the sergeant reveals his own character as well as the characters of those he is associated with - This is a one-sided dialogue in
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