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Barbie Doll - Marge Piercy
Courtney Pottson 27 May 2011
Transcript of Barbie Doll - Marge Piercy
and presented dolls that did pee-pee
and miniature GE stoves and irons
and wee lipsticks the color of cherry candy.
Then in the magic of puberty, a classmate said:
You have a great big nose and fat legs.
She was healthy, tested intelligent,
possessed strong arms and back,
abundant sexual drive and manual dexterity.
She went to and fro apologizing.
Everyone saw a fat nose on thick legs.
She was advised to play coy,
exhorted to come on hearty,
exercise, diet, smile and wheedle.
Her good nature wore out
like a fan belt.
So she cut off her nose and her legs
and offered them up.
In the casket displayed on satin she lay
with the undertaker's cosmetics painted on,
a turned-up putty nose,
dressed in a pink and white nightie.
Doesn't she look pretty? everyone said.
Consummation at last.
To every woman a happy ending. Paradox/Oxymoron - This connects to the main idea in that it shows how puberty, which isn't magical at all, effects the girl fitting into society Speaker - Bystander seeing a girl who wasn't perfect and didn't fit into the stereotype of a woman, be treated wrongly
Speaking To -A girl whp doesn't fir into society's stereotype of a woman
Main Idea - If you don't fit into the woman stereoype, you aren't accepted in society Onomatopoeia - The pee-pee is a sound made by the doll that all girls are expected to play with at a young age. Parallel Structure - This emphasizes the toys the stereotypical girl plays with to fit into society. Diction - The negative diction to describe the girl after puberty shows that she isn't being accepted into society. Asyndeton - This emphasizes what the girl enjoyed and how she acted. This connects to the main idea because she was intelligent and didn't fit into the stereotype made by society. Simile - This shows how society got into the girl's head and caused her to break as a fan belt would. Hyperbole - This shows how when people keep pestering you and putting you down, you do extreme things. The girl went to extreme measures to please society. Diction - The "turned up putty nose" descirbes the girl after she has died and how everyone accepts her now that she looks the part of the woman stereotype. Allusion - "Consummation at last" was the last thing Christ said on the cross. This was the last thing said about the girl who didn't fit into society. This shows that now she's dead, she fits into society. Connection to Author - Marge Piercy didn't fit into society's sterotype of women. She didn't meet Freudianism. She was an intelligent woman and thought for herself. She didn't want to stay at home and cook and clean all day. This caused her first marriage to end. There are many aspects of modernism in Marge Piercy's poem "Barbie Doll." Piercy uses disillusionment in that she doesn't sugar coat what society thinks of the girl in the poem. She blatantly explains the situation. Alienation is in the poem in that she is being rejected until she is dead. In Memory of Sigmund Freud by W.H. Auden
This poem was written in 1940. W.H. Auden was a Premoderism poet. His poem addresses the Fruedian concept of how women should act. "If he succeeded, why, the Generalised Life
would become impossible," shows how he thought all women should act a certian way but in reality, it wouldn't work out. It connects to the poem "Barbie Doll" beacause they both address the woman stereotype of not being able to think for themselves. Cited Sources