A Comparative Analysis Of Shakespeares "Shall I Compare Thee And Donne's The Flea

1812 words - 7 pages

A Comparative Analysis of Shakespeares "Shall I Compare Thee and Donne's The Flea

In "shall I Compare Thee" Shakespeare is addressing a woman, although
it is not clear who, the most likely person is his dark lady.
Shakespeare addresses this woman directly in a charming way.

The poem is not said to of been set in a particular place but I
believe it is more then likely to of have been set in a garden because
the things he compares the woman with are found outside. The poem is
about Shakespeare trying to explain he deep his love is for this
woman. Although I would like to believe that this poem is about
platonic love it is my opinion that Shakespeare is trying to ensure a
sexual relationship with this woman, because he already has a wife.

In "The Flea" the poet addresses the woman directly. The poem, unlike
"Shall I Compare Thee" is set inside in a bedroom, which shows just
how close they already are to having sex! In "Shall I Compare Thee"
the poet's ulterior motive is much more subtle then in "The Flea", in
fact in "The Flea" the subject of the poem is about Donne trying to
seduce the woman into having sex with him, even thought they are not
married and it says that "parents grudge" their relationship.

The poems have two different tones "Shall I Compare Thee" is all about
eternal love and "The Flea" is about immediate love.

In "Shall I Compare Thee" the type of love being expressed seems to be
a genuine love; Shakespeare is trying to persuade his dark lady that
he really, really loves her.

The first argument in "Shall I Compare Thee" is expressed in the first
two quatrains when Shakespeare tries to compare the woman to a
summer's day, and then realises as he is writing the poem that a even
a perfect summers day is not as beautiful as her.

The poems second argument is marked with a discourse marker, in this
case "But". The poems second argument is why the woman is better then
summer, Shakespeare says "Sommers lease hath all too short a date….but
thy eternall sommer shall not fade" Shakespeare is saying that summer
ends and fades, but you never will.

The last two lines of "Shall I Compare Thee", "So long as men can see,
so long lives this, and this gives life to thee." The first thing I
noticed about the final couplet is that they are indented from the
rest of the text; I believe this is to give this final couplet the
feel of a conclusion. These two lines mean that as long as people can
read then this woman's beauty will live forever and that in the poem
she can never die.

In "The Flea" the poems first argument is when Donne uses the flea to
add impact and emphasise his point that her losing her virginity is
not a big deal. He says it has already sucked from him and from her
and that in this flea their blood is mingled. Donne uses this type of
sexual innuendo a...

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