The Unknown Citizen Analysis W. A phonograph, a radio, a car and a frigidaire. Auden in the 20 th century on which it was characterized as one of modern poetry. This feeling makes the poem eerie and prescient; one often thinks of the dystopian, totalitarian states found in the writings of George Orwell and Aldous Huxley or the data-driven surveillance state of today. Supporting quotes: Quotes 1 One against whom there was no official complaint line 2 The Unknown Citizen isn't the only passive person in the poem. The report describes the standardization of contemporary life, which is at odds with the value involved: individual freedom. Written in free verse, although using many couplets, this poem is a poem that describes the life of a certain person through his records and documents.
He began to concentrate on religion and relationships in his poetry, as opposed to left-wing politics, and he also ventured into writing drama and libretti. For the man is considered average and is like other americans that blend into the background of society just like him! From the form aspect we can also see that the poem was written in the free verse, because it is unrhymed. Moreover at the end of the poem the author makes a relevant turn which effect is making the reader question himself if what was depicted before is the right thing, if that ideal or concept about how the life of a person must be indertaken is right or wrong. Characters' inevitable failure in the quest B. The poem was first published on January 6, 1940 in , and first appeared in book form in Auden's collection , 1940.
In 1946 Auden emigrated and became an American citizen. His move to America helped broaden his artistic output. In this case, the Union is watching over the Unknown Citizen to make sure he pays his dues, and the government is watching over the Union to make sure it doesn't encourage communist and socialist agitators. Work and no play cause problems within any society. The Health-card report shows he was in the hospital only once, and left cured. I love my Mom and Dad and Sis to the fullest like the sunflower loves the Sun. A society that drives its members to conformity is one that dehumanizes them.
He had the right number of children and he did not quarrel with the education they got. Supporting quotes: Quotes 1 And all the reports on his conduct agree That, in the modern sense of an old-fashioned word, he was a saint, For in everything he did he served the Greater Community. Our researchers into Public Opinion are content That he held the proper opinions for the time of year; When there was peace, he was for peace: when there was war,he went. It is found that the poem is set during the post depression and post war. Except for the War till the day he retired 7. Xiah, Micky, Hero, Max and U-know are the real Hotties.
These sometimes use the same number of syllables, but they are not heroic couplets—no, they are not in iambic pentameter—they are often 11 or 13 syllables long, or of differing lengths. The speaker deduces that the Unknown Citizen must not have been a scab or had strange opinions simply because he paid the regular membership fees for his Union. Auden satirizes the United States as an entity, which restrains individual advancement. It is symptomatic in the sense that the reader can apply the essence to the contemporary and sociological issues that threaten society as a whole throughout time. The theme of both poems deals with the need for citizens to become more outspoken and follow their own beliefs instead of simply following their country.
On the totem pole of bureaucracies, the government is slightly above the corporation, which is why the State can call citizens away from their jobs to serve in the army during a war. He has no desire for self-assertion. There is a record of insurance policies in his name, And there is another record of him visiting a hospital and being treated successfully. The Press are convinced that he bought a paper every day And that his reactions to advertisements were normal in everyway. In the phrase 'The Unknown' the word 'unknown' means ordinary, obscure. Continuing in the theme of this dystopia, it is quite likely his life was consumed with the propaganda produced by these agencies. His own beliefs changed radically between his youthful career in England, when he was an ardent advocate of socialism and Freudian psychoanalysis, and his later phase in America, when his central preoccupation became Christianity and the theology of modern Protestant theologians.
There was a lapse during the war but for the entirety of his tenure He worked in a production plant and was maintained on payroll, As he was a good employee to Fudge Motors Inc. As Auden writes: The Press are convinced that he bought a paper every day And that his reactions to advertisements were normal in every way. The Marble Monument, I believe that it is sort of special monument, most likely grave, built by the States for respecting the death of the unknown citizen. Majoring in English Department, Faculty of Humanities since 2011 to 2015. What do these things really tell about someone? Through depersonalization, the government rewards those who actually never do anything. Posted on 2009-02-06 by a guest. No government statistics can ever answer these kinds of questions.
The theme of the poem is that it is important for being sociable and known by many people because that is live in a normal way. The speaker begins by introducing the main subject of the poem, who will never receive a name, or proper identification. Our researchers into Public Opinion are content That he held the proper opinions for the time of year; When there was peace, he was for peace; when there was war, he went. And our teachers report that he never interfered with their education. He served his community, he held a job, he paid union dues, he did not hold radical views, he reacted normally to advertisements, he had insurance, he possessed the right material goods, he had proper opinions about current events, and he married and had the right amount of children. Archived from on January 28, 2013.
Analysis of The Unknown Citizen by W. We have enough information to characterize his life story c. In life there are two people in the world, ones who conform to every whim and those who will rebel to create a difference in their society or others. The speaker knows that those in power have put in place all that is necessary to nullify the citizen - effective propaganda being their main tool. It says that he worked in a factory which I find ironic because his whole life seems to be like an assembly line with the same things occurring daily, go to work, read the paper, etc. Auden, describe societies that reflect the latter.
Quote 4 Both Producers Research and High-Grade Living declare He was fully sensible to the advantages of the Instalment Plan And had everything necessary to the Modern Man, A phonograph, a radio, a car and a frigidaire. The question is absurd: Had anything been wrong, we should certainly have heard. A nation will lose its identity if it forgot its history. Auden Works Cited Missing Wystan Hugh formally known as W. Thus, this poem The Unknown Citizen is a bitter attack on modern society-its indifference towards individuality and identity. Auden, is about a man who obeys the law and does what needs to done by a normal citizen. The state even call him a 'saint', because he kept to the straight and narrow and was a good role model, not because he was holy or carried out religious acts.