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Senior Presentation: Sylvia Plath

AP Literature and Composition

Mahmuda Ahmed

on 28 May 2013

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Transcript of Senior Presentation: Sylvia Plath

Conclusion Sylvia Plath is a great writer and poet, as she uses herself as inspiration in her works, such as her poems in the collection "Ariel" and her popular novel, "The Bell Jar".
Her use of literary devices strengthens her novel and poems, to pull in readers. Thesis Statement: Sylvia Plath Sylvia Plath, author of "The Bell Jar" and many collective poems, writes about herself in her works, which depicts her own poor mental state, and presents her style of writing. Reasoning for Topic Sylvia Plath was a disturbed person, and had many psychological issues, which was interesting to research.
Plath's personal experiences makes her poems and novel much more interesting to read. Sylvia Plath: Basic Biography Research Coe, C. (2003, July). Lady godiva: The naked truth.
Ueng, S. (2008, January). "Sylvia plath’s love and hatred to her father: The contradiction in sylvia plath’s 'daddy'".
"Sylvia Plath". (2013). The Biography Channel website.
Plath, S. (1960). "Ariel", "Daddy", "Edge", "Lady Lazarus", "Medusa".
Plath, S. (1971). The bell jar.
O'Reilly, C. (n.d.). Sylvia plath. Biography (continued) Went to study at Newnham College, England.
Married a fellow poet, Ted Hughes, in 1956.
Went back to MA.
Gave birth to her first child, Freida in 1960.
Her first collection of poems were published.
Had their second child, Nicholas, in 1962.
In 1963, Plath committed suicide. by Mahmuda Ahmed Focus of Study To present the similarities between Sylvia Plath and her many works.
To analyze the different literary devices used to strengthen her works. Born October 27, 1932 in Boston, MA
Attended Smith College (in MA)
Spent a summer in New York Sylvia Plath was a depressed and disturbed writer. Attempted to commit suicide. "The Bell Jar" (continued) Sylvia Plath's, "The Bell Jar" "The Bell Jar" (1971) was one of her most successful and popular works. Biography (continued) Ted Hughes became Plath's "literary executive".
In 1982, Sylvia Plath won the Pulitzer Prize. Now, let's begin... To this day, Sylvia Plath is still considered a great writer. This story is about a young, brilliant, and successful woman named Esther Greenwood that gradually begins to turn towards insanity, which mirrors the authors experiences and amplifies Plath’s use of literary devices, all of which has made this an American classic. The Bell Jar in "The Bell Jar" Poems by Sylvia Plath Neurotic Esther... "The Bell Jar" (continued) "The Bell Jar" (continued) The
Meanings Quote:

"Only I wasn't steering anything, not even myself. I just bumped from my hotel and to work and to parties and from parties to my hotel and back to work like a numb trolleybus. I guess I should have been excited the way most of the other girls were, but I couldn't get myself to react. (I felt very still and very empty, the way the eye of the tornado must feel, moving dully along in the middle of surrounding hullabaloo.)" (Plath, pg. 3, 1971). Esther tells us that she takes a trip to New York, in the summer, to work for a magazine. Literary Works Sylvia Plath went to NY as an editor to the magazine, "Mademoiselle", much like Esther. Why did Plath attempt to kill herself the first time? Caitriona O'Reilly states: "'The Bell Jar' (1971) deals with the theme of isolation and unhappiness in greater detail. The book is really a roman à clef detailing the traumatic summer of Plath’s breakdown in 1953...” (O’Reilly, pg. 358). Before I move on... Further on in the novel, Esther has a flashback of a conversation with her former lover, Buddy Willard.
Explains how she is neurotic. How many of you... prefer the country?
prefer the city?
prefer both? "If neurotic is wanting two mutually exclusive things at the same time, then I’m neurotic as hell. I’ll be flying back and forth between one mutually exclusive thing and another for the rest of my days” (Plath, pg. 94, 1971). Process Researched secondary sources
Compared it to primary sources
Effective note taking
Poem analysis This (left) is a bell jar.
Metaphorical in novel. What it MEANS "...because wherever I sat -- on the deck of a ship or at a street cafe in Paris or Bangkok -- I would be sitting under the same glass bell jar, stewing in my own sour air” (Plath, pg. 185, 1971). Esther is feeling trapped within herself, like being in a bell jar. "Ariel"
"Lady Lazarus"
"Medusa" Next, poems. 1. Death
"Suicidal, at one with the drive/ Into the red/ Eye, of the cauldron of morning” (Plath, stanzas 9-11, 1960).

2. Sylvia Plath's horse. "Ariel" "Daddy" Death
Father is already dead.
Dr. Sue-Han Ueng states: "While her words want to “kill” her father (line 6), Plath herself, indeed deeply loved him, which can be perceived in the poem between the lines" (Ueng, 2008).

"Daddy" vs. "Father" "Lady Lazarus" Death
Woman's attempted deaths

Doctor "Edge" Death
Woman and children

The moon "Medusa" Mother
"The Bell Jar" and "Medusa"
"The piggish noise irritated me, and for a while it seemed to me that the only way to stop it would be to take a column of skin and sinew from which it rose and twist it to silence between my hands (Plath, pg. 123, 1971).

Nothing like "Daddy". Overall... Sylvia Plath inserts herself into her literary works and bases them off of her life and her experiences.
"The Bell Jar" "Lady Lazarus" Questions, anyone? ~FIN~
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