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Sylvia Plath's Poems (A Critical Analysis by Qaisar Iqbal Janjua)

Sylvia Plath's Poems (A Critical Analysis by Qaisar Iqbal Janjua)



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Published by: Qaisar Iqbal Janjua on Jan 08, 2010
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ByQaisar Iqbal Janjua From Lahore, Pakistan. Contact (92) 300 8494678qaisarjanjua@hotmail.com
Sylvia Plath(1936-1967)
“How you insert yourself, Between myself and myself,Scratch like a cat”.
“Cold Glass” 
ByQaisar Iqbal Janjua From Lahore, Pakistan. Contact (92) 300 8494678qaisarjanjua@hotmail.com
Sylvia Plath was born in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, the older childof Otto and Aurelia Schoeber Plath. Her father was professor of German andentomology (a specialist on bees) at Boston University; her mother, a highschool teacher, was his student. Both parents valued learning. In 1940 Ottodied of complications from surgery after a leg amputation, and Aurelia'sparents became part of the household to care for the children when shereturned to teaching.Sylvia's interests in writing and art continued through her public schoolyears in Wellesley, Massachusetts, and at Smith College, where she attendedon scholarships. Her extensive publications of poems and fiction led to herselection for the College Board of Mademoiselle magazine in 1953. Thedepression that was endemic in her father's family troubled her during her junior year; when her mother sought treatment for her, she was given bi-polar electro convulsive shock treatments as an outpatient. In August 1953,she attempted suicide by overdosing on sleeping pills. Recovered after sixmonths of intensive therapy, Sylvia returned to Smith and her usualacademic success. A senior, she wrote an honours thesis on Dostoyevski'suse of the double and graduated summa cum laude in English; she also wona Fulbright fellowship to study at Newnham College, Cambridge. In the fallof 1955, she sailed for England.Plath studied hard but her life in England was also sexual. As herwriting showed, she was angry about double-standard behaviour, andclaimed for herself the right to as much sexual experience as men had. Shebelieved combining the erotic and the intellectual possible, and when shemet Ted Hughes, a Cambridge poet, she felt that life with him would beideal. The two were married in London on 16 June 1956, accompanied bySylvia's mother.After a honeymoon in Spain, the Hugheses set up housekeeping. Sylviapassed her examinations while Ted taught in a boys’ school; in June theysailed for America. The next year Sylvia taught freshman English at Smith;in 1958 and 1959 they lived in Boston and wrote professionally. Ted's firstpoem collection, The Hawk in the Rain, won a major poetry prize; Sylvia'spromise that she would make him a success seemed fulfilled. Unfortunately,giving such single-minded attention to Ted's work meant that developing herown voice as a writer was difficult. She visited Robert Lowell's class inpoetry writing, where she met George Starbuck and Anne Sexton; Sexton’s
ByQaisar Iqbal Janjua From Lahore, Pakistan. Contact (92) 300 8494678qaisarjanjua@hotmail.com
work became an inspiration to her. Plath worked part-time as a secretary inthe psychiatric division of Massachusetts General Hospital, transcribingpatients' histories, which often included dreams. She also resumed therapywith the woman psychiatrist who had helped her after her breakdown.The years in the States convinced Ted that he needed to live in England.After an autumn at Yaddo, the writers' colony, Ted and Sylvia sailed forLondon in December 1959. Sylvia was happy: she was writing good poems(she had written 'The Colossus' at Yaddo, where she had discoveredTheodore Roethke’s poetry), and she was five months pregnant. Soon afterFrieda’s birth on 1 April 1960, they began looking for a country house toescape cramped, expensive London. In late summer of 1961, they moved toDevon, where Sylvia was ecstatic about their centuries-old manor house.Before that time, however, they wrote efficiently (sometimes in theborrowed study of poet W. S. Merwin), and Plath was able to finish most of The Bell Jar. Influenced by J. D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, Sylvia'snovel narrated a woman's life from adolescence, ending with a positiveresolution of rebirth.Ted wrote programmes for the BBC and became a Faber author, incontact with T. S. Eliot and other important British poets; Sylvia waspublishing new kinds of poems, content that William Heinemann hadcontracted to publish her book, The Colossus and Other Poems. Itspublication in October 1960 was well received, and Alfred Knopf publishedthe collection in the States.Personal jealousies, differences in American and British views of gender roles, and a return of Sylvia’s depression complicated the Plath-Hughes marriage. Despite their happiness when Sylvia became pregnantonce more, after an earlier miscarriage, the marriage of two aspiring writersliving in an isolated village with an infant and little money was difficult.After Nicholas’s birth in January 1962, Sylvia faced the fact of Hughes’sinfidelity, expressing herself through increasingly angry--and powerful--poems. In contrast to such work as “The Rabbit Catcher” and “TheDetective,” her radio play for the BBC, ‘Three Women,” is a beautifullywrought, sombre poem about maternal choice.Plath had learned to find joy in her women-centred world, and the careof her children and friendships with other women were increasinglyimportant. But she could not tolerate male irresponsibility. Living with thechildren in lonely Devon, Plath wrote many of the poems that later appearedin Ariel. Her so-called October poems, written during the month after

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AOA.. mjhy adrienne rich ke poems ke explanations chye.... plz sir
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hi sir hw r u? sir plzzzzzzz mujy sylvia plath ka theme wala question bta dain kesy attempt kerna
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