What has Dylan Thomas tried to achieve in this passage? How has he used language to try and achieve this?

Essay by will_fangJunior High, 9th gradeA+, May 2008

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Under Milk Wood is a 1972 play written by Dylan Thomas. He has tried to set the mood of the play through the use of contrast, the use of sound devices as well as the use of a narrator.

The use of contrast is a key factor in setting the mood of the play. Dylan Thomas has achieved this through the comparison of animate and inanimate objects with their opposite characteristics. Thomas has given humans the descriptions of inanimate objects while the inanimate are given characteristics not dissimilar to those of humans. These descriptions compare the stillness and movement of the sleepy town. For example, Thomas has used similes‘The houses are as blind as moles’to create the image of darkness and desolation. This shows that they are dark and quiet and the simile has given the inanimate house the characteristics of the mole. As well as the use of similes, Thomas has also incorporated personification‘…shops in mourning…’to describe the sleepy town.

This quote shows that the shops have little business and that the town in desolate and isolated. It created a sense that the people of the town are still while the shops and houses are given the emotions of humans. It is through the use of contrast that Dylan Thomas has created the mood of the play.

Furthermore, sound devices create a sense of eeriness and mystery when used by Thomas to create the mood of this play. The use of devices such as alliteration and compound adjectives further emphasise the mood of the town and also provides others with the sleepiness engulfing the small town. For example, the use of alliteration‘…widow’s weeds…’represents the sadness over the town because it seems to show the grief and mourning across the town. Also, the use of compound adjectives‘…bible-black…’emphasises the evil...