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Man Versus Monster in "The Death of the Loch Ness Monster"

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Lydia Pearson

on 26 September 2013

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Transcript of Man Versus Monster in "The Death of the Loch Ness Monster"

Man Versus Monster in "The Death of the Loch Ness Monster"
2nd Paragraph- Contrasting Language
MacEwen uses many contrasting or opposite words such as
- "dark" vs. "luminous"
- "died" vs. "lived"
- "lost" vs. "found"

2nd Paragraph- Contrasting Language
MacEwen uses many contrasting phrases, which furthers her contrast:
- "Consider that the thing has died" vs. "before we proved it ever lived"
- "in his mind's dark land" vs. "where he dreamed up his luminous myths"
- "this water-snake, this water horse, this water-dancer"- gets progressively more graceful
3rd Paragraph- Change in Perspective
The first stanza uses the pronoun "it" when referring to the monster, thus dehumanizing it and is, therefore, seen from man's point of view.
The second stanza switches the pronoun of the monster from "it" to "he," and the perspective switches, MacEwen ponders the notion that the monster thinks man is the myth.
The third stanza also uses "he" and there is even more sympathy for the monster. The last line states that the monster was "dream[ing] up" man.
SO WHAT? This shift in perspective could challenge the reader's idea of reality, further showing the oftentimes "noble... soul" of thinngs which we fear and do not understand.
4th Paragraph- A Deeper Look
MacEwen not only describes the loch ness monster specifically. She also is challenging man's false view of all things of which we are afraid. Oftentimes we are afraid for no reason, MacEwen shows this deeper level through her repetition that the monster "died of loneliness." This shows that, despite the inhuman characteristics described by man in the first stanza, the creature is just as lonely as we are.
Gwendolyn MacEwen constructs a moving and well-expressed poem entitled "The Death of the Loch Ness Monster," wherein she effectively contrasts man's shallow and judgemental view of the loch ness monter, a seemingly dark creature that man does not understand, with the altogether "noble... soul" that is possesses. MacEwen creates this contrast with contrasting language and a shifting in pronouns and perspectives, bringing the poem to a deeper, more applicable level, where MacEwen challenges both man's tendency to falsely judge things we does not understand and our somewhat naive view of reality.
Working Thesis and First Paragraph
MacEwen also challenges our view of reality. Instead of merely presenting the loch ness monster as a myth, she also presents man as a myth. In the second stanza she puts forth the idea that the monster is "tired of pondering the possible existence of man." The very first line, "Consider that the thing has died before we proved it ever lived" shows that things exist on their own, regardless of our validation of their existence.
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