Robert Frost's Themes Of Isolation, Extinction, And Limitations Of Man



Three of Frost’s obsessive themes, those of isolation, of extinction and of final limitations of man are explored widely and explicitly in his poems. The isolation of the individual is apparent in the poem; “Mending Wall” in which Frost’s illustrates man’s necessity for barriers to isolate themselves from their fellow men whereas in “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening” the persona himself wishes to be isolated. In “After Apple-Picking” Frosts questions the possibility of extinction of the soul when one’s mortal body becomes extinct. While in “Fire and Ice” Frosts looks at the ways in which humans can eliminate themselves because of the extremities of their uncontrollable emotions. ...

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is isolation. The persona ponders at the fact why man can not live without walls, boundaries, limits and particularly self-limitations. “There where it is/ We do not need a wall”. Isolation of the individual links to our desire for barriers and boundaries as a form of separation from other people. We find in “Mending Wall” the desire of a rural farmer to mend a wall every spring between him and the persona “And set the wall between us as we go”. The persona in this poem interrogates his neighbour as to the necessity of the wall “What I was walling in or walling out” thus questioning his desire for isolation. Primitive as the neighbour is, the only answer he could give to this interrogation is a cliché “Good fences make good neighbours”. Isolation, through the use of barriers helps insure a comfort zone that is beneficial for both parties. However, the persona in this poem does not understand why it is beneficial and thus raising the issue of the necessity of the wall “Why do they ...

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and non-preaching manner.
“Fire and Ice” gives us two possibility of how we can lead to out own extinction through the extremities of our emotions that we can not suppress or control. Fire and ice are the extremes of two destructive forces. Fire symbolises passion and desire, however excessive passion leads to jealousy. When we are too consumed with passion, our emotions take over and this will lead to suffering as we may neglect other factors in our life that are just as important. “From what I’ve tasted of desire/ I hold those who favour fire”. Opposing to fire is ice, ice symbolise coldness and hatred. Similar to ice, excessive hate can lead to drastic outcomes as people let hate ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 7/5/2007 10:30:37 PM
Category: Poetry & Poets
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1375
Pages: 5

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