Telephone Conversation Analysis

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How is Prejudice Explored in the Poems 'Still I Rise' and 'Telephone Conversation'? 'Telephone Conversation' by Wole Soyinka and 'Still I Rise' by Maya Angelou tackle the social injustice of discrimination. Both poems lack in similarities, the only one being theme, yet possess an abundance of differences. Although both poems convey the same theme, they differ in their means of conveyance. For instance they both explore prejudice and discrimination but through different types of language, imagery and structure. Both writer's use their creativity and personal experiences to display two different perspectives on prejudice. Similarities and differences between each poems and explorative strategies will be further explored in this essay. The…show more content…
'Still I Rise' employs an empowering and confident tone through the use of "bitter" words filled with "haughtiness". The present proud tone allows Angelou to praise her positivity instead of demeaning her cynics. She believes that belittling her opposition reaps no benefits, so instead she elevates herself to teach the readers of their capability to overcome any obstacles. The reader is forced to read the poem with it's suited assured tone that promotes the fact that all of humankind has the same capacity to achieve greatness. However, Soyinka's 'Still I rise' chooses to apply a sarcastic, almost comedic tone through it's silly lines such as the fact that "sitting down, has turned my bottom raven black". The caller's bottom is irrelevant let alone black yet is still stated to instigate humor. Soyinka uses this comedic tone to make the flaws in racism obvious. This tone forces the reader's to laugh for a second before coming to the realization of its wrong doing and provoking a change in behavior. Not only that, but the sarcastic tone, influences a corrective effect on the reader and points out the flaws in…show more content…
Although Soyinka and Angelou utilize different devices, structures and other poetic concepts, they all epitomize the same everlasting social injustice. Reader's are educated not only on the nonsensicality of discrimination, but also that they have the power to overcome it.Yet no matter the differences, both poets force the importance of change. Even though both poems were written with a 15 year difference between them they still strive to solve the same issue. Even though discrimination might've not been present at one time, it will always be relevant as it is an ever-lasting issue. Whether we are in 6025 or even 1325, prejudice will always be present and all we can do is decrease the amount of people participating in this social injustice. After all, "Prejudice is a burden that confuses the past, threatens the future, and renders the present inaccessible." -Maya

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