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Satire In Anne Sexton's Cinderella Essay

755 words - 3 pages

In Anne Sexton's "Cinderella" one may ponder what the purpose and tone is. Anne Sexton uses a strong satiric and humorous undertone when poking fun at marriage. The use of dark humor adds life and body to the poem. Anne Sexton's placement of witty understatements is impeccable and allows the reader to imagine Anne Sexton's dark humorous laugh as they read the poem."You always read about.../...the nursemaid some luscious sweet from Denmark / who captures the oldest son's heart. / from Diapers to Dior. / That story." Satiric poetry like "Cinderella" often blends criticism with humor to convey a message that the author is trying to convey. Satire can be seen in "Cinderella" without even finishing the first stanza. In Anne Sexton's case she is using satire to describe marriage. Sexton has prime examples of her satiric undertone in the first four stanzas. She shows how trite these traditional stories about marriage are. When reading this section, one may imagine a slight cackle of chuckle in the voice of the reader."Next came the ball, as you all know. / It was a marriage market." In a line like this Sexton is able to use her poetic power to bring across her personal thoughts on arranged marriage as well as superficiality and "love at first sight". Sexton conveys that the fairy tale like meeting and love in a Cinderella or Romeo and Juliet setting is very cliché. After enticing the reader with her transformation of the evil stepmother, she ends the stanza with, "That's the way with stepmothers". Her sort of casual tone and understatements shows just how twisted of a mind she has and how she feels about similar situations.In the eighth stanza Sexton uses yet another satiric comment on the irony of a story, she brings across the feeling that some things are too good to be true, when she uses the line, "back to cinders." Sexton also has uses of sarcasm and irony in the eight stanza in "Cinderella" she states "However on the third day, the prince / covered the palace steps with cobbler's wax / and Cinderella's gold shoe stuck upon it." Sexton took the traditional element of Cinderella's shoe falling off when...

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