“Musee des Beaux Arts” by W. H. Auden Essay- by EduBirdie

The poem ‘Musée des Beaux Arts’ presents to the reader a powerful challenge regarding every day life. It reminds the reader of the occasional religious moral guide intended sermons from a reverend. Further the poem could be likened to a moral story or fairy tale that serves to guide or advise the listener or reader.

Essay on “Musee des Beaux Arts” by W. H. Auden

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Bearing these images in mind this paper seeks to proof that humans have conditioned themselves to disregard the suffering that seems always to surround them as Follow the Edubirdie the surface meaning of the poem in relation to the deep insights on the attitude of complacency and failure to take any responsibility as deftly insinuated by the poet.

By combining different painting works as presented in the poem, Auden lets the reader travel through history to the present condition of suffering. In line fourteen and fifteen, it is disillusioning how ‘everything turns away’ from a ‘disaster’ without showing any interests.

The aloofness of the very immediate people who should help in the disaster is clear by the words ‘important failure.’ Tragically, they ignore it since to them it does not affect what they are doing therefore it warrants no attention.

The ploughman, the herdsman, the fisherman and the crew in the ship seem conditioned to ignore their immediate surroundings. The ‘amazing fall’ and ‘forsaken cry’ in the midst of the quiet green surroundings reflected on the water reveal an irresponsible attitude.

This attitude is reinforced by lines one to four through Auden’s casual description of abnormal behaviors. The sun is shining as trustpilot.com/review/edubirdie.com it should be, the city far off does not even know what happens and the surrounding islands environment is tranquil as ever as it could.

By using lines that overlie onto each other, the speaker clearly portrays how suffering occurs in the midst of other good things. This illustrates however that its occurrence changes no course of the others neither does it bother their businesses hence the speaker uses it as an attack against the order of situations.

Poems ?

In lines one to four, wisdom is clearly praised in the painting. The Old Masters symbolically refer to older persons with the capacity to guide, foresee and accurately state issues regarding human nature. It’s clear that human nature does not care about suffering as the ploughman at best ignores the shepherd who also plays indifference to the fishermen.

The shepherd’s posture is rather comical in his aloofness towards the noisy drowning boy and the ‘expensive’ ship on the waters. The message hits home that humans are interested in only that serves their own personal gain and interests.

Effectively the speaker uses the normal eating, opening a window or idle walk scenarios to signify ‘casual indifference’ at the expense of suffering others. As some suffer others prosper in their own thoughts and emotions. A careful observation by Auden thus reveals that good times against bad times or big versus small are never arranged but rather occur spontaneously near each other with no apparent author.

As such when some are eating others have nothing to eat as line four alludes and while the aged wait for a miraculous birth, the children get unhappy and leave to fulfill their own pleasures of play oblivious of the dangers of skating. Further, as someone gets drowned or tortured the dogs continue to be doggy while the horse completely ignores this by indulging in its own rubbing pleasures.

The Old Masters’ images depict that the sun shines brightly while the ploughman, the shepherd, the fisherman, the ship and the immediate environment casually are unchanged by the action of drowning. The speaker of the poem effectively captures the Old Master’s view in line ten ‘……the dreadful martyrdom must run its own course.”

Eagleton’s view that the poem can be read as an allegory of ‘contingent nature of modern existence’ is traceable in Auden’s words (Eagleton 3). In lines nine and ten, the speaker’s words that ‘martyrdom must run its own course’ have the meaning that those who suffer understand the impacts alone. For the rest it makes little or no sense since they are satisfied with what they have or do.

These persons are represented by dogs and horses as animals in contact with humans on a daily basis. Indeed modern lives are busily packed by bills to pay, work to do, errands to make as well as parcels to deliver. It is thus likely that humans in the modern existence have conditioned themselves against instances of suffering in their immediate surroundings.

By employing a conversational tone in the poem, the speaker protests against the attitude of complacency and irresponsibility towards human suffering.

His is a conscious attempt that uses the ordinary language and situations to vilify selfishness, personal interests and ego-centric actions. It is an attack to self importance when the speaker uses the word ‘amazing’ to refer to an occurrence that leads to death in the presence of an ‘expensive delicate ship’ that has to go ‘somewhere.’

The speaker’s case therefore argues against personal interests and ego centrism. Auden through the speaker detests complacency and irresponsibility in human behaviors thus his ultimate goal is to present them negatively to invoke change. The responsibility for suffering can only be achieved through this change.

Works Cited

Eagleton, Terry. How to Read a Poem . London: Blackwell, 2007. Print.

“Ladybird Ladybird” a Film by Ken Loach Essay (Critical Writing)- by EduBirdie

Directed by Ken Loach, Ladybird Ladybird is a chef-d’oeuvre based on a true story from England. The protagonist in this film is Maggie, an emotionally wretched woman; a mother of four children but living with none. Raised under the watch of an abusive father, Maggie goes on to beget four children with four different men; ironically, she is married to none.

Critical Writing on “Ladybird Ladybird” a Film by Ken Loach

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The Social Services have taken away Maggie’s four children and placed them in foster families. From flashbacks, the audience learns sees how one night Maggie locks her children up in the house and goes out for a singing expedition. Unfortunately, fire breaks out in the house leaving Shaun, one visit homepage of her children badly burnt.

Afterwards, she shows up late in the night to see Shaun in his foster family and even though she is denied access, she forces her way in. Moreover, she attempts to change his bandages leaving him hurt. This happens before she meets Jorge in a club and they become good friends. In the hands of Jorge, things happen fast and within no time, they get two baby girls only to be taken away by the Social Services for Maggie is “at risk” according to the government agencies (Loach 1994).

Maggie stands for a distraught mother and a wife, seeking love in the wrong places. According to Bjorklund and Bee (2008), “…one of the most significant elements in age stratification is…patterns of experiences associated with marriage and family life…the family life cycle” (p. 8).

True to this observation, Maggie is lost in the family life cycle as she tries to secure custody for her children and a husband to love and cherish her, together with her many children. Unfortunately, she finds none of these longings because she is seemingly uncontrollable almost bordering insanity. However, there are forces that have pushed Maggie into becoming her own sorriest foe. As a child, her father sexually and physically abuses her.

The Social Services have thrown her into emotional breakdown by taking her children away. Tooley (1978) asserts, “To part a woman from her child is violent and traumatic resulting to psychological complications” (p. 21). Maggie fights these psychological forces and this explains why she behaves the way she behaves. Nevertheless, even in her worst situation, Maggie brings out the role of women in society during her time.

The outstanding role of women edubirdie.com review in this movie is childbearing and motherhood. Maggie performs excellently in the role of childbearing. Before she meets Jorge, she already has four children with different fathers of different races. The film is set in England at a time when women’s role were solely bearing and bringing up children.

Film Studies ?

Unfortunately, Maggie fails terribly as a mother. Mothers are known to be caring, but Maggie cares less as depicted in the scene where she leaves her children in a locked room at night. Moreover, she did not follow the norm of sticking to one man. There is nothing modesty in having five men in one’s life; regrettably, Maggie fails to understand this unwritten norm.

If I were Maggie, I would give my children the care they deserve and engage a serious man into long-term relationship leading to marriage. I would amicably solve my psychological problems by engaging the people around me positively instead of discharging my problems to them. My decision is not different from Maggie’s because of time and place. The role of women as mothers will never change with time and place; women have been, they are and will be mothers.


Bjorklund, B., & Bee, H. (2008). The Journey of Adulthood (6th Ed.). New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall Publishers.

Loach, K. (Dir.). (1994). Ladybird Ladybird. UK: Channel Four Films.

Tooley, K. (1978). The Remembrance of Things Past: On the Collection and Recollection of Ingredients Useful in the Treatment of Disorders Resulting from Unhappiness, Rootlessness, and the Fear of Things to Come . American Journal Of Orthopsychiatry, 48(1), 16-30.