Compare how effectively the 3 dramatic monologues use the form to explore a particular milieur

Essay by niky_devilHigh School, 12th gradeC, November 2006

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The three poems that we will discuss, "My Last Duchess", "Ulysses" and "The love song of J.Alfred Prufrock" are called dramatic monologs because it consists entirely of a single speaker who reveals though his poems his own nature and remarkable circumstance that the poet is found in. All these three poems successfully uncover the psychology in which Browning, Tennyson and Eliot found themselves in, respectively.

In "My Last Duchess", by Browning, the speaker is the egotistical art collecting Duke who speaks to us directly though a mediating narrator. As a reader we might feel that we were eve's dropping because as the poem unfolds we learn that the duke is speaking to a representative of his fiancé's family, Browning vividly shows us the Duke standing in front of 'last Duchess painted on the wall', and he continues to talk of her imperfections. We might feel that he is showing off his painting more than his wife that shows that his view of the world is that he is over confidant and is the center of the universe.

However Browning has more in mind than just showing us this Duke and his character and placing him in a historical setting. This leads us to understand that the historical setting has a lot of meaning: the Italian renaissance held a fascination for Browning as he represents the flowering of beauty and humans, thus, the background allows Browning to explore the themes of sex, violence and the love for beauty as if they were all one issue. This Victorian age was a male dominated era and in this poem a reader gets engaged on a psychological level. The Duke seems to have, in this poem, eliminated his last duchess because he felt she under valued him and treated him the same...