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Skripsi Sastra

CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION

 

A.     Background of the Study

English is the most popular language in this world. Many countries in this world use this language. Discussing English, someone can not leave the literature. British as a country which produces this language has historical period of literature. Discussing literature, someone has to know the meaning of literature. As Terry (1983: 1) said that literature is as imaginative writing in the sense of fiction - writing which is not literally true. But even the briefest reflection on what people commonly include under the heading of literature suggests that this will not do. On the other hand, literature refers to any body of written material which has a lasting appeal and which is highly regarded and widely accepted by its readers. It is imaginary, not the real world. It is merely the reflection of reality representing it. It can be said that literature is imaginary world that reflects the life of human being because literature creates metaworlds, worlds which exist within our mind and such things are readily accepted. Despite the fact how strange or mysterious it maybe, we say it really exist because we believe in it. . It means that everything occurs in the literary work does not always really happen, but it still has possibility to happen in human life. So by studying work of literature, someone can learn human’s life.

 

Literature is the result of human creation or the writer. The writer as the member of a group or society, in expressing his/her idea, at least will be influenced by society condition that becomes the background. The result of the writer is in order to communicate to the reader. So far, if the literature is considered to be the form of communication, so the writer, the society condition that becomes the background and the form or the style of the literature that are involved inside the literature.

The literature is as the media for the writer to realize his/her idea. By literature, the writer can communicate everything that exists in his/her mind. All of human activities that had been summarized become a history of life that colored the literature of the writer. It describes that literature comes from society, which is described by the writer in his/her work. Literature is as the reflection of life that exists, which is created by the writer with all of his/her imagination. So, beside the existence of social reality, a writer in creating his/her work is also influenced by his/her imagination. This imagination is being influenced by the experience of the writer’s life, and the existence of life reality.

On the other hand, it can be said that poetry is a kind of literature on which the poet reveals his experience, ideas and feeling. To ask ‘What is poetry?’ is very much like asking ‘What is literature?’ and in fact the answers to both these questions overlap: Poetry is perceived as fictional, it uses specialized language,  in many cases it lacks of a pragmatic function, it is also ambiguous ( Stephanie, 2003: 1 ).

In addition, there are a number of outward signs that indicate a poem: Most obviously, the individual text lines in poetry do not fill the entire width of the page. Thus, before they have actually started reading, readers of poetry are given an instant indication that what they are going to read is probably a poem. In consequence, a reader’s attention is likely to focus on ‘poetic features’ of the text. (Stephanie, 2003:142).

Poetry is often associated not only with specialized language but with a very dense use of such specialize language. Poems usually try to express their meaning in much less space than, say, a novel or even a short story. Alexander Pope once explained that he preferred to write poetry even when he wrote about philosophy because it enabled him to express himself more briefly (Pope, 1734: 64) in Stephanie book.  As a result of its relative brevity, poetry tends to make more concentrated use of formal elements, it displays a tendency for structural, phonological, morphological and syntactic (Stephanie, 2003:143)          

As Perrine (1974: 524) said that poetry is a kind of multidimensional language. Perhaps it is the most difficult kind of language. It needs a compactness language. Many experts have different overview in defining what the poetry means. According to Perrine (1974: 518) poetry may be defined as a kind of language that says more intensely than does ordinary language. Intense, however, refers to compactness, full of meaning which is differing from the usage of language in the daily life.                          

Understanding the meaning of poem context is related to semantic study. Semantics, as the study of meaning, encompasses units of language which vary in size, from part of words and sounds right up to whole clauses and sentences. Related to this case, Lyons (1977: 1) defines semantics as the study of meaning in linguistics. It can study about the meaning of words, phrases, and sentences in receptive and expressive verbal language. In conclusion, meaning is the major case in semantics. Furthermore, knowing the meaning of a poem can deliberate the message as clearly as possible. The message can be gained in the straight line. As the result, there may be no confusion appear. The message, of course, is not always printed clearly in poem. It may be a hidden or an implicit message. Because of this reason, the readers are more interested in reading a poem because they can imagine the meaning by themselves. Thus, they find a pleasure from it.

 To understand the hidden message, the figurative language that covers it must be known by the readers. Siswantoro (2002: 23) said that figurative speech or figurative language is poetic devices in which two images or objects are compared to make language interesting and meaningful. The poet uses common expression in original and creative ways to compare objects and makes the poem more interesting and meaningful. As Bradford (1961: 4) states that figurative language is the language, on the whole, favored by rhetoricians, poets, fiction writer, lover and the like. Negatively, figurative language is the language that avoids speaking directly or plainly about the subject under examination. Positively, figurative language is the language that either speaks symbolically about the subject or heightens the musicality of the language when speaking about the subject.

 There are many types of figurative language. They are simile, metaphor, personification, irony, apostrophe, hyperbole, antithesis, synecdoche, paradox, and symbol. Each of them has certain function. Personification, for instance, reveals an inanimate is recognized as animation.

 Irony is the use of words in a way to conceal true intention with literal intention. Like paradox, irony has meanings that extend beyond its use merely as a figure of speech (Perrine, 1970: 612). More clearly, irony is when someone says one thing but means another. Much subtext, many puns, and quite a bit of sarcasm and slander are dependant on irony. When someone gets a new awful haircut and asks you what you think, and you say that it is "a real good do" (using "do" to mean she was done over, she did not get her money's worth,) you have used irony - whether or not it is obvious probably determines whether you get yelled at. Similarly, if a plot involves a famous person with a dirty secret, and the famous person asks another character if a third person knows who they are, then a response "Oh, she knows exactly who you are" to answer what the famous person would want to hear but really to mean "she and I know your secret and you are not fooling us" would be the use of irony (lavender,http://brainstorm-services.com/wcu-lit/craft-of-poetry.html) retrieved on Monday, November 24, 2008, 4:53:32 PM.

 

Edward Arlington Robinson is one of the most importance poets in this time. Most of his works explore the traditional metrics and a modern sensibility with its skepticism, pessimism, and irony. Irony is one of Robinson’s most consistently employed tools, Robinson characteristic in tone is ironic and he uses it variously to achieve various ends. So, this study intends to analyze and find the meaning of irony in Edward Arlington Robinson’s poem, especially in “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood party”,

The writer is interested in analyzing this poem because it is one of the great poems written by Edward Arlington Robinson. The author has created many popular poems, but the writer only analyzes irony in three poems in order the researcher can focus in analyzing the poems.

 

B.     Statement of the Problems

 

From the background of the study above, the writer formulates the problem as follows:

1. What irony is found in “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood party” in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem?

2.      What is the significance of the irony in “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood party” in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem?

 

 

C.     Purpose of the Study     

1.      To find irony in “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood party”, in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem.

2.      To know the significance of the irony in “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood party”, in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem.

 

D.    Significance of the Study

This study will give benefits to the readers who want to analyze literary works, especially poetry. Hopefully, through this study on irony in poetry the reader will notice the irony in each poem and the idea of the poet using the irony as the theme of his works. Irony is an important feature in Robinson’s poem. Hence, this study will discover the use of irony in order to understand the poet’s idea through the content of the poems.

 

E.     Scope and Limitation

The scope of this study focuses on the analyzing and finding the meaning the irony in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem. And for the limitation, the works of Edwin Arlington Robinson that would be analyzed are two of his poems entitled “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood party”. This study also tries to describe the importance of using irony in the poems.          

                                  

                                                        

F.      Definition of Key terms

      Poetry                             : Kind of language that says more and says it more intensely than does ordinary language (Perrine, 1970: 517)

      Semantics                        :  Lyons (1977: 1) states that semantics is the study of meaning.

      Analyzing                         : Longman dictionary (1985: 5) defines analyzing is to examine the nature or structure of something by examining its part, in order to understand or explain it.

Figurative Language         : figurative language is a way of describing an      ordinary thing in an un-ordinary way (Perrine, 1956: 610).

      Irony                               : The use of words to convey the opposite of their literal meaning; a statement or situation where the meaning is contradicted by the appearance or presentation of the idea (Bradford, 1961: 23).

 

    

 

 


CHAPTER II

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE

           

In this chapter, the subjects that will be discussed are the biography of the author, the definition of semantics, kinds of figurative languages, discussion of irony and other related theories which are used to analyze the poems of Edwin Arlington Robinson.

 

A. Biography of the Author

Edwin Arlington Robinson was a poet of transition. He lived at the time following the Civil War when America was rebuilding and changing rapidly and when the dominant values of the country seemed to be growing increasingly materialistic. Robinson's poetry was transitional, evaluating the present by using traditional forms and by including elements of transcendentalism and Puritanism.

Robinson spent his childhood in a small town in Maine, a town which furnished him a setting for many of his poems as well as models for his characters. His father was a prosperous merchant; his mother had been a schoolteacher. The parents were primarily interested in their two older sons and tended to ignore Edwin, though they recognized his exceptional intelligence. While fond of his family, Edwin felt himself an outsider among them, as he also felt separated from the society of his town.

Robinson studied at Harvard from 1891 to 1893 and afterward returned to Maine to stay for three years. Miserable and lonely most of the time, he moved to New York in 1895. His first volume of poems had been published while he was at home in Maine; in 1897 a second volume appeared. But he prospered neither as a poet nor as a businessman and ended by working as a checker of loads of shale during the building of the New York subway. In earning his living as a writer, Robinson experienced the same difficulties as Hawthorne had fifty years before and was forced to the same humiliating expedients (bad in facing life). Hawthorne checked sacks of coal as they were loaded in Boston Harbor; Robinson checked shale. Franklin Pierce, a grateful President, had rewarded his friend and campaign biographer, Hawthorne, with a post in the Sales Customs House and then with a more lucrative post as consul in Liverpool. Just so another president of the United States, Theodore Roosevelt, found Robinson's poetry impressive and helped him get a clerkship in the New York Customs House, where he worked until 1910. He sometimes may have encountered the ghost of Melville, who had spent the last lonely years of his life there, haunted by the feeling that he had failed as a writer. Suddenly, with the poetic revival that preceded World War I, Robinson began to play a major role as a poet. After going his own way quietly for so many years, he became widely read and exerted a strong influence on other poets, notably Robert Frost. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for poetry three times in the 1920, a record exceeded only by Frost, who received the prize four times in all.

The core or main of Robinson's philosophy is the belief that man's highest duty is to develop his best attributes as fully as possible. Success is measured by the intensity and integrity of his struggle; failure consists only in a lack of effort. Robinson was most interested in people who had either failed spiritually, or who seemed failures to the world but had really succeeded in gaining spiritual wisdom. Although his apparent pessimism (pessimism that is looked clearly) he refused to subscribe to a naturalistic view of life. Being by nature introspective and conscious of psychological depths, he was acutely aware of the spiritual side of man and relatively uninterested in the surface aspects of man's life as a social creature.

Robinson's best known statement on the hollowness of conventional success is the lyric poem, "Richard Cory". Although everyone respects and envies Cory, one night he fires a bullet through his head. The writer is left asking why, and Robinson does not give an answer. The writer can only suppose that what other people think and feel is not as important as what a person himself believes. Since Cory knows his life is worthless in spite of his "success," he puts an end to it.

In the other poems the readers feel an even greater sympathy when they read "Mr. Flood's Party”. For here is an old man, now completely friendless, his only company a jug of liquor. He is so lonely he talks to himself; so friendless that he has nothing left in life. Nevertheless, the situation Robinson describes to the reader is never mawkish. The readers sympathize, but they smile at the same time. He invites our sympathy; he does not command it. When he compares Mr. Flood with the great medieval warrior Roland, blowing his horn to call his friends in an epic struggle, he expects the readers to remember that splendid as Roland was in that struggle, he died without his companions ever answering the call of his horn. At least Robinson’s skill lies in another technique; his ability to manage rhythms and sounds to convey the meaning and mooed of the poem. A good example is the perfectly modulated concluding lines of "Mr. Flood's Party." Robinson could have ended the poem with emphasis; he chooses instead to soften the rhythms and to decrease the ending with two dependent clauses. Our voice drops naturally and then levels off as the reader finish reading the poem, the old man's horn echoes and dies, unanswered. (Reuben,http://www.csustan.edu/english/reuben/pal/chap7/robinson.html) retrieved on December 30, 2008, 5:21:30 PM. Before discussing poetry and its elements, the writer wants to discuss the related theory of poetry. They are semantics and category of meaning.

 

           B. Understanding Semantics

Semantics is technical term used to refer the study of the meaning in words and phrases. Soekemi (2000: 9) said that semantic is concerned with the meanings of non-sentences such as, words, phrases, just as much as with whole sentences. In conclusion, semantic is the study of the relationship between linguistic forms and entities in the world; that is, how words literally connect to things. Semantics analysis also attempts to establish the relationship between verbal description and states of affairs in the world as accurate (true) or not, regardless of who produces that description.

To analyze the meanings of poetry, of course, semantic as well as pragmatic have to be understood. Semantics and pragmatics cannot be separated. Both of those elements have certain function, concerned with people’s ability to use language meaningfully (Kleidler, 1998: 18). They must be integrated each other. As Kleider (1998: 18) said that Pragmatic is another branch of linguistics that is concerned with meaning. The advantage of studying language via pragmatics is that one can talk about people’s intended meaning, their assumptions, their purposes or goals, and kinds of action that they are performing when they speak. Unfortunately, the big disadvantage of pragmatics is that all these very human concepts are extremely difficult to analyze in a consistent and objective way. 

            In a poem, the intended meaning or the message can be often delivered as clearly as possible. The overview of the reader is not the same as what the writer means. It emerges the distinction notion between the writer and the reader. It is true that poetry has many intended meaning that should be discussed by the reader. Revealing the intended meaning can bring the readers to gain the message of the poem. So, understanding pragmatics seems to be helpful. 

 

 

      C. Category of Meanings

 

On this basis, the writer will explain the types of meaning. The description of these meanings may help us in bearing the meaning of a poem easier (Claire, 2000: 14).

 

      1. Conceptual Meaning

Conceptual meaning (sometimes called ‘denotative’ or ‘contextual’ meaning) is widely assumed to be the central factor in linguistic communication (Claire, 2000: 18). The denotative meaning which is involved in conceptual meaning shows the truly meaning of words. It does not need interpreting because it is clearly printed. The word Rose, for instance, in denotative means of beautiful flower.

 

      2. Connotative or contrastive meaning

Connotative meaning is a meaning is arises as a result of the comparison of the symbol to another symbol. It is represented by different symbols, different word, different style, and different speech level (Claire, 2000: 18). Connotation and denotation are very contrast. A connotation can concentrate and enrich what the word means. Connotative meaning is open- ended in the same way as our knowledge and beliefs about the universe are open-ended too. It means that identifying subjectively or objectively may contribute to the connotative meaning.

 

Connotative, however, says more than the words that to be printed. It can be the word has several meanings. It depends on the people who interpreted that word. It seems to be the assumption of “saying one thing meaning another”.

 

3.      Stylistic meaning

Stylistic meaning is a meaning associated with the use of language varieties in the discourse. (Claire, 2000:17). The writer decodes the stylistic meaning through our recognition of different dimension and levels of the usage within the same language. Someone may recognize some words from dialect, status usage including formal and informal. In diglossic society different languages may also have different meanings.

      Crystal and Davy (Investigating English Style) have recognized the main dimension of stylistic variation. The examples are: status (polite, colloquial, slang, etc), province (language of law, science, of advertising, etc), Modality (language of memoranda, lectures, jokes, etc). From those explanations, it can be concluded if that the usage of language is different, the meaning will be different too. It depends on the listener who has various interpretations.

 

4.      Affective meaning or socio-cultural meaning

Ahrisah (2006: in her course book said that Affective meaning is largely a parasitic category in the sense that to express our emotions we rely upon the mediation of other categories. Emotional expression through style comes about, for instance, when we adopt an impolite tone to express displeasure, or when we adopt a casual tone to express friendliness. So that, affective meaning more emphasizes on the emotional expression.

 

5.      Situational meaning

Situational meaning is the meaning of words or phrases can also depend on the situation in which the words or phrases are used (Ahrisah, 2006: 9). For example:

    1. Fire! ( kebakaran )
    2. Fire? ( perlu korek )
    3. Fire! ( tembak )

From the example above it can be seen that different situations determine the meaning of the same word.

 

6.      Thematic meaning

            Thematic meaning is a meaning associated with different morpho-syntactic arrangement. It is mainly a matter of choice between alternative grammatical constructions (Claire, 2002: 16). As in these examples:

a. A man is waiting in the hall.

b. There’s a man waiting in the hall.

From those sentences, it is clearly enough that both of them have different grammatical construction. Though, the contextual meaning is likely the same.

Beside the theory above, there are also some intrinsic elements of the poems such as, imagery and diction that will support the analysis. Those two elements are important in the poem because through imagery and diction, the ideas of poem can easily to be expressed.

 

      D. The intrinsic elements of poem.

 

      1. Imagery

Expressing human experience in the poem needs an effective way. It can be expressed by imagery. Understanding the use of imagery in poetry is essential for a comprehension of the overall meaning. Imagery may be defined as the representation trough language of sense experience. It is essentially word-pictures and they usually work by a method of association (Perrine, 1970: 599). This means that the images are created by associations that the readers make within the linguistic context of the text. For example, the word "red" immediately creates an image or picture of the color red in our minds. This color is associated or has connotations with other feelings or images, like anger, and this increases the depth of the poem. Arnold (1942: 22) said that the important thing to remember is that the images are an instrument that the poet uses to express his or her intentions or feelings. Understanding the use of image means understanding the essential meaning of the poem. Think of images as useful tools that the poet uses in order to reveal or explain the meaning that is in the poem

Images are very concrete "word pictures" having to do with the five senses-touches, smell, taste, sound, movement, and especially sight. As Perrine (1970: 600) points out, images make readers experience things vividly. It means that when the readers read a poem using imagery they will fell more meaningful. To figure out the imagery in a poem, the reader should first make a list of every single mental picture, or visual image that comes to mind as he reads the poem. He can then go back and find other kinds of ideas that have to do with physical sensations, sounds, tastes, smells and so on. Finally, he can go back and think about all the ideas these different images could imply figure out their connotations in other words. For example, if a poet compares something to a ship, the reader might think about what ships look like, and then think about what it feels like to be on a ship. How do ships move? Where do they go? What sights, sounds, smells and sensations can we associate with ships and being on ships? After thinking about these questions, the reader can go back and attach these ideas that a ship implies to the thing to which the ship is compared, and finally try to fit these ideas into the overall meaning of the poem.

Importantly, poets often place images in opposition to each other. This creates what is known as "tension." Tension is often an important clue to the meaning of a poem; it also creates drama and interest and is a key to paradox. One should look out for strange contrasts in images in the process of analyzing poems, and think about the responses they arouse in a reader. Images can be part of similes and metaphors, though they are not always (Arnold, 1942: 24). Since imagery is a tool to express the experiences through all senses (looks, feels, sounds, tastes and smells), it become the important element for both poem and reader to provide the reader’s imagination  with something concrete in  understanding poem.

 

                                                                                     

2.      Diction

Siswantoro (2002: 14) said that to make an integration of ideas as message from the poet to the reader, the author has to choose the most appropriate words to develop a good poem. This selection of words is called diction. Through a good selection of words, a poem is expected to arise the reader’s emotion. Words in a poem may represent the poet ideas or messages that he or she wants to deliver to the reader, because of their connotation or association in the sentence.  Diction is the type of words poets choose to use in their poems. A poem that uses slang expressions can be just as powerful as a poem that uses a lot of big words and feel free to mix up your diction in a poem. A good poem will choose the most suitable and appropriate words for his purpose. It means that the author wants to make the readers fell enjoyable and interested in the poem and hopes to the readers that they have same idea and feeling when they read the poem. Therefore, a poem can easily to be understood and evoke the reader’s emotion; it has to use diction in writing poem.

 

There are three kinds of diction; they are formal diction, neutral diction and informal diction.

(John,http://bcs.bedfordstmartin.com/virtualit/poetry/diction_def.html) retrieved on December 30, 2008, 5:03:48 PM.

  • Formal Diction:

Words that appear a bit more elegant or extravagant. Often formal diction will contain words that are polysyllabic (many syllables).

  • Neutral Diction:

Words that appear ordinary that someone hears everyday Contractions are often used in poetry that has neutral diction, as well as a simpler vocabulary.

  • Informal Diction:

Words or phrases that have slang expressions, or the colloquial the language of relaxed activities and friendly conversations.

Some words are neutral, but they can have negative or positive connotations. For example, the word island is neutral. When it refers to a vacation on a Greek island, the word has positive connotation. When it describes being shipwrecked on an island, the word has negative connotations. Also, words associated with smell can be either positive or negative. For example, "scent" is positive, while "odor” is negative.(John,http://bcs.bedfordstmartin.com/virtualit/poetry/diction_def.html) retrieved on December 30, 2008, 5:07:44 PM.

Here are examples of some neutral words and their positive and   negative connotations:

neutral

Positive

negative

Island

vacation

Shipwrecked

Smell

Scent

Odor

Teenager

Young citizen

Delinquent

house

home

dump

 

      E.   Kinds of Figurative Language

 

      1.  Simile

     Perrine (1956: 610) defines simile as a comparison made between two objects of different kinds which have, however, at least one point in common. The comparison in simile often uses the words such like, as, so, appear, seem, more than. For example, the woman moved like a fish. She moved as though she were as weightless as a fish in water. Her movements were certainly as graceful and fluid as those of a sea creature. She seemed ready to swim away at any moment, like a startled school of fish. Here, the woman is the literal term, while the fish, sea creatures, and school of fish are all figurative terms.  

 

      2.  Metaphor

     Metaphor is implied simile. It does not, like the simile, state one thing is like another or acts as another, but takes that for granted and proceeds as if the two things were one (Perrine, 1965:610). For example, the expression "The apple never falls far from the tree" contains a metaphor in which parents or family is compared a tree, while children is compared to an apple. The metaphor expresses that children are never very different from the parents or family from which they come.

 

3.      Personification

     Personification is describing the thing or object of inanimate is recognized as animate. The purpose is to create quality of the image of words (Siswantoro, 2002: 29). For example, look at the line from the popular Seals and Crofts song, Summer Breeze: July is dressed up and playing her tune. Here the month of July is spoken of as though it were a woman. July is dressed up, that is, July is in full swing, flowers are blooming and butterflies are flying, resembling the pattern of a summer dress. Also, to say that July is playing her tune is a metaphorical way of saying that birds are singing and nighttime insects and frogs are voicing their mating calls. Thus the figurative term, a woman in a dress playing a tune, is identified with the literal term, a summer month in which nature is at its peak of activity. (Andres, http://brainstorm-services.com/wcu-lit/craft-of-poetry.html) retrieved on December 30, 2008, 5:20:32 PM.

 

4.      Hyperbole

             Hyperbole is a statement is made by emphatic by overstatement words (Siswantoro, 2002: 34). It means that hyperbole uses incredible exaggeration to create an effect. Wren and martin (1981: 491) said, in hyperbole a statement is made emphatic by overstatement. For example: I will die if I do not pass this course. The word “die” is only statement from student that does not want to fail in facing examination.

 

5.      Symbol

      Symbol may be defined as something that means more than what it is (Perrine, 1974: 628). Symbol is often used by a poem writer to express his feeling. The reader of poem has difficulties in interpreting it. It causes each reader has different overview about it. Sometimes, what the writer means is not the same with the reader. For example, "the straw that broke the camel's back" is a symbol of a last, remaining bit of patience with a difficult, on going situation.

 

6.       Synecdoche

       Synecdoche is a way of naming a thing: the word for a part of a thing is substituted for the whole (Stull, 1961: 36). For example, in the sentence I bought a new set of wheels this morning, the word "wheels" is substituted for the word "car." Wheels are part of any car; here the part is substituted for the whole.

 

7.       Metonymy

Metonymy is a way of naming a thing: a thing closely related to the thing actually meant is used to name it (Stull, 1961: 41). For example, He came from excellent blood substitutes the term "blood" for family, and expresses the idea that an individual comes from a good family, perhaps a noble one. Blood and family are related because families are made up of people who have similar characteristics; people have blood, and people in families, being related to one another, are often said to share the same blood. Furthermore, blood, a biological thing, is not part of a family, which is a cultural institution. However, blood, part of the human body, can be substituted for family, a group of biologically related bodies. Thus the figurative term blood is substituted for the literal term family.

 

8.      Allegory

An allegory is very similar to a symbol. Laurence Perrine (1970: 597) describes it in this way: Allegory is a narrative or description that has a second meaning beneath the surface one. Although the surface story or description may have its own interest, the author's major interest is in the ulterior meaning. What this means is that in addition to the surface meaning of the poem there is also a more important, deeper meaning. Allegories relate especially to subject matter from the Bible and from mythology. For example, a garden in a poem may be not just a garden, but it may represent also the Garden of Eden and all of the ideas that accompany the idea of the Garden of Eden become potentially important in the poem.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9.      Irony

 Irony is the use of the word that says something more than what people really mean (Bradford, 1961: 22). In this sense, irony is like metaphor. It is contrast or discrepancy between one thing and another. He also divides the irony into three kinds such as verbal, situational, and dramatic irony.

 

10.  Paradox

A paradox occurs when two things that should not be able to exist at the same time are said in a poem, to exist at the same time (Perrine, 1970: 609). For example, it is impossible that it be both night and day, both spring and fall, both past and present at the same time. If, however, one were to say that night and day coexist in a poem, one would be expressing a paradox. Because human beings frequently experience two or more emotions at the same time (mixed feelings, ambivalence) means it was contrast each other or can see things from two points of view at the same time, they often use paradox in poetry to express such a situation. For example, if a poem were to say that the speaker of the poem is experiencing the past and the present at the same time, this might mean that his memories of the past are so vivid or clear that the past seems to be existed in the present.

 

 

 

 

 

      F. Irony

 

1. Meaning of irony

The concept of irony is to make the meaning become very strong by saying something different from what literary means or from what is literally true. (http://www.poemhunter.com/irony/html). Retrieved on Monday, November 24, 2008, 4:11:58 PM.). Irony is employed in a literary work is certainly with a distinctive feature, which the reader needs to be able to recognize and respond. However it can be overlooked and misunderstood by impractical readers. Hence, there are overstatement and understatement (Perrine, 1970: 610). Overstatement is statement in which saying more than literally means or true to make the meaning more intense. Understatement in which is saying the meaning comes when saying something less than literally mean or true. The term irony comes from the old Greek word, eiron. Like eiron, irony presents the contrast between appearance and reality.

Furthermore, Perrine (1970: 231) stated that, Irony is a term with a range of meaning, in which all of them involve some sort of discrepancy or incongruity. The contrast in some ways mocks the other term and its presence is marked by sort grim of humor and unemotional detachment on the part of narrator.

 

 Since irony presents the contrast between appearance and reality, irony also represents the life it self which is basically ironic (Perrine, 1970: 231). It can be meant that irony springs from the experience of the poet, which he or she wants to tell to the reader in specific terms. So that irony is not a simple literary device in literary work. In short, irony is the opposite result of one has hoped and the possibility of fulfillment that he or she has expected. Furthermore, the perception of irony involves both discernment and detachment of fact that makes it the most effective element to criticize, and help the reader to understand the purpose of the poem. It can be meant by using irony; the speaker may express and explore his or her ideas in his or her works. Later the speaker leaves the reader to infer what he intends (ideas or philosophy) in his or her works. Irony may also move the readers to laughter or even make them wonder or sympathy. The involvement of the reader emotion, the poet in this case has come to his or her purpose which uses irony whether it uses a statement, a situation, an unexpected event, or a point of view that strikes the reader to affect him/her to be remembered.

 

2.      Kind of irony

As the previous discussion, irony refers to a contrast or discrepancy between appearance and reality. This discrepancy can take a number of different forms. . Perrine (1970: 232) divides three major kinds of irony, verbal irony, dramatic irony and irony of situation.

a. Verbal irony

 Verbal irony is a disparity of expression and intention: when a speaker says one thing but means another, or when a literal meaning is contrary to its intended effect. Perrine (1970: 614) states that verbal irony is a figure of speech in which the appropriate is said from what is intended. The discrepancy is between what is said and what is meant. Verbal irony always requires the reader to detect the discrepancy between the denotative meaning of the words and the author’s intention in using them. Thus, verbal irony is the riskiest of all poetic devices because there is always the possibility that the author’s intention will go unrecognized (Hopper, I990: 50).

            Perrine (1969: 613) states that ironic similes are a form of verbal irony where a speaker does intend to communicate the opposite of what they mean. For instance, the following explicit similes have the form of a statement that means P but which conveys the meaning not P. The irony is recognizable in each case only by using stereotypical knowledge of the source concepts to detect an incongruity. On the other hand, it can be concluded that verbal irony is when an author says one thing and means something else.

b. Dramatic irony  

Dramatic irony is defined by Perrine (1970: 615) as a disparity of expression and awareness: the discrepancy is not between what the speaker says and what he means but between what the speaker says and what the author means. The value of this kind of irony lies in the comment it implies on the speaker or his expectation. This irony appears whenever a speaker in a literary work says something with an application or a depth of meaning that someone sees but he does not.

c. Situational irony                  

This kind of irony is the commonest and most powerful in poetry and literature generally, and for this irony no particular wording is required. Perrine (1970:616) states that the most important thing for the storywriter is the discrepancy between appearance and reality or between expectation and fulfillment, or between what is and what would seem appropriate. So that it can be said that situational irony is a discrepancy between the expected result and actual results.

Situational Irony occurs in literature and in drama when persons and events come together in improbable situations, creating a tension between expected and real results. An example of this would be a scene where a man and woman are sitting at a bus stop and start to converse. The woman expresses some of her deepest darkest secrets. The man listens and advises her, and the woman thanks him and gets on her bus. After she goes the man takes off his heavy coat to reveal that in fact he is wearing the garb of a priest. The irony lies in the fact that the woman never knew that the man who she was talking was a priest, but the audience does and the reality of what the audience knows about why the man was so helpful and understanding is different from the reality in the woman experience.

(Simon,http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/irony/) retrieved on November 24, 2008, 4: 29: 18 PM.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER III

RESEARCH METHOD

Literary in this case research is an effort of searching knowledge a defining it continuously, carefully toward literary cases (Hume, 1776: 1). It means that literary research is a science that has obvious object, method and approach. Literary research as a scientific activity must be supported by appropriate method.

Method is defined as a mean or manner of procedure especially a regular and systematic way of completing anything (Godlier international dictionary, volume two: 826). According to Longman dictionary of contemporary English, method is way to doing something. Moreover Cohen (2000: 44) states that method means that range of approaches used in educational research to gather data which are to be used as a basis for inference and interpretation, for explanation and prediction. Traditionally, the word refers to those techniques associated with the positivistic model-eliciting responses to predetermined questions, recording measurements, describing phenomena and performing experiments.

 From those definitions above, the writer can conclude that method is a way of work before understanding an object of research.

It should be notified the object of this research is a kind of writing as his expression of the idea, thinking and feeling beside of the purpose of this research; the writer tries to explain the irony of figure of speech in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem.

A.     Approach

Approach is needed to analyze meaning of poem. To make this research more specific and more details, it is important to view that the objects of this research are from certain knowledge of view that is called approach. An approach is the basic principle or the element used by someone when she or he appreciates a work of literature. Choosing and determining the approach are much determined by the aim of someone who appreciates the work of literature (Hume, 1776: 2). The suitable approach in analyzing the meaning of poem is structural approach (Siswantoro, 2002: 144). So, in this research the writer will use structural approach, where the approach is limited on research of the literary work by it self and it is something dependent, so the research is done internally or explicitly.

 

B.     Research design

Research design is the way or strategy to do something (Hume, 1976: 7). The purpose of the research is to describe and analyze the method, to make clear limitation and to understand process of analyzing. The method used in this research is descriptive qualitative. Descriptive qualitative method is the method that describes and interprets about problems observed by the writer (Thomas, 1921: 6). It concerns with the condition that exist, aptitude that is held, process that is going on and effect that are being felt. Qualitative means to analyze data using logical thinking.

The qualitative method has five characteristics (Hume, 1776: 2), namely:

a.       Natural setting is data resources and researcher a key instrument.

b.      The qualitative method descriptively, it means that data explained in.

c.       The form of word or picture is not statistic.

d.      The qualitative is considered as more important to process that result.

 Strauss and Corbin in Hume’s book state about qualitative research as follows:

By the term qualitative research we mean any kind of research that produces findings not arrived at by means of statistically procedure or other means of qualification. It can refer to research about persons’ lives, stories, behavior, but also about organizational functioning social movement, or interactional relationship (1990: 17)

 

It means that qualitative research is used to solve the problem that is appropriate with the point of view and approaches that are used by researcher. Qualitative research includes the evaluation research, case study and literary analysis. The writer uses qualitative research due to the fact that there are no variables which can be treated with statistical procedures and also because the result is descriptive and objective.

 

 

C.     Source of the data

Source of data in research is the subject where the data obtained (Arikunto, 2002: 07). It means that the source of the data is the subject where the data can be gained. To collect the data, the writer will conduct library research. As the main sources, the writer gathers the data from the text of the poem it self and some books that supports the theories of the poem. The writer also employs some references from other related reading sources such as article, literary theories, internet and many other sources.

 

D.    Technique of collecting data

Data collection is the way that is used to get the data (Marczyk, 2005: 109). The data collecting activity is done after mastering and clearing views about the problem, which is examined. To get the mastering and clearing views, so that the writer must exercise many kind of references to handle the problem and explain the understanding of the problem in discussion

Cohen (2000: 49) says that methods of data collection (covert observation); the nature of the participants (emotionally disturbed adolescents); the type of data collected (highly personal information of a sensitive kind); and what is to be done with the data (publishing in a manner that causes the participants embarrassment).

 

 

It can be said that in collecting data activity; the writer must take the correct one and enabling to split the problems that patterned. The writer takes and gets the data from the investigation and the supervision of the extrinsic aspect. This collecting data is called observation. In this case the writer uses library research. The writing of this proposal entirely be done through library research. The data are collected from libraries in some places where the related books are available to gain more detailed information to support the content of this proposal. In order to collect the significant data, the writer decides to use library as a basic activity of this research writing. The writer collects the data, which are relevant to this from library. The information may be taken several books such as Indonesia and English literature.

 

 

E.      Data analysis

Data analysis is used to present the validity of the result of the study (Hume, 1776: 5). In this research the data are taken from poetry and some supporting theories. As soon as the significant data are collected, the writer comes to analyze about the irony of figure of speech in Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem. Secondly, the writer reads the poems to find some quotation to the object of the study, educational values, and then the writer tries to interpret and explain. At last the writer puts it in the proposal as the result of the research. The data is then presented in a descriptive method. The description is then followed by interpretation and analysis using the concepts related to the literature and education values.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER IV
DISCUSSION AND FINDING

 

           This chapter covers the result of the analysis of two poems, “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood Party”, written by Edwin Arlington Robinson. The data that was already collected will be used to answer the problems that are found in Robinson’s poems. In this chapter the writer will concentrate to analyze irony. In this case, irony that will be analyzed is situational irony. To develop irony in the two poems “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood’s Party”, the writer also analyzes the significance or something that is important in irony. It is done by the writer in order the reader can catch and understand well the content of the two poems implicitly or explicitly.    

A. Analysis of the Poems

In this session, the writer will analyze the two poems of Edwin Arlington Robinson “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood Party”. 

 

1. The poem “Richard Cory”

The poem “Richard Cory” uses a quatrain stanza form. It means that the stanza comprising four lines of verse with various rhyme patterns. As Mildrof (2003: 167) said that quatrain stanza is one of the most common and popular stanza forms in english poetry. It is a stanza comprising four lines of verse with various rhyme patterns.

     “Richard Cory”


Whenever Richard Cory went down town,
We people on the pavement looked at him:
He was a gentleman from sole to crown,
Clean favored, and imperially slim.

And he was always quietly arrayed,
And he was always human when he talked;
But still he fluttered pulses when he said,
"Good-morning," and he glittered when he walked.

And he was rich - yes, richer than a king -
And admirably schooled in every grace;
In fine we thought that he was everything
To make us wish that we were in his place.

So on we worked, and waited for the light,
And went without the meat, and cursed the bread;
And Richard Cory, one calm summer night,
Went home and put a bullet through his head.

 

a.      Irony in “Richard Cory”

The poem “Richard Cory" is a very simple poem. Three stanzas describe the subject, Richard Cory, and the one stanza shocks the reader with Cory's suicide. In this poem, the Author reflects his life’s experience or his personal history with character of “Richard Cory”. “Richard” is a word which suggests the idea of being rich and wealthy. In addition, “Cory” is an extension of the root “core” which suggests the center of one’s inner being. Robinson uses situational irony to deliver his idea and make easier the reader in catching the idea of the poem. In this poem, the irony can be found when Cory failed to get the spiritual values. So that he can not survive. Finally he decides to end his live by kill himself. 

Richard Cory is a picture of wealthiest man in a town which most people want to be like him. Hence he was isolated from town people because of his wealth. 

Whenever Richard Cory went down town,
We people on the pavement looked at him:

In the first stanza the words “down town” draw that Cory is separated from the society, in this case the townspeople. The writer can say this statement because if Richard Cory went down town, he must have previously been up town. It indicates a wealthy residential neighborhood, whereas the words “down town” suggest the business district where the people of working class reside. It means, between Richard and the societies are separated by the place where they live.

In the first sentence in line two the word “We” explains that the speaker in this poem is the townspeople, while the phrase “on the pavement” suggests a place as usual where poor people live, in this case lower class. It can be said, the life between Cory and the townspeople are very contrast. The distinction is Cory as a wealthy man but the townspeople’s life is full of poverty. Then they “look at him” as if they never saw him before. So that, they are still nervous when they face and talk with him. Richard Cory is a perfect man who has everything. It is explained in line three and four below:

He was a gentleman from sole to crown,
Clean Favored,
and imperially slim.

 

The word “gentleman” draws between the two socio-economic classes. A “gentleman” belongs to the gentry (a man who comes from good family) or higher socio-economic class than simply “a man”. Then the words “sole to crown” draws appearance of his gentleman quality. So, the words “gentlemen” and “crown” suggest of royalty that is contrast with the townspeople who are ordinary and poor.

And he was always quietly arrayed,
And he was always human when he talked;

 

             In the next stanza (line five and six) give picture of Cory’s appearance, in this line shows that Cory is not a king, he is only a human being. The speaker of this poem is careful to make sure his listeners understand that Richard Cory is a really nice guy. He does not behave arrogantly, he speaks to townspeople like another, Cory seems very friendly, affable, happy, just like the common working-class but he is better than them because of his manner, education and wealth. Even though Cory is “quietly arrayed,” not arrogant or haughty, and even though he chats like a common guy but he makes townspeople a little nervous when he greats or talks to them. Perhaps it is caused by Cory’s manner, attitude and wealth. It is explained in line seven, “And he was always human when he talked”, this line explains that Cory assumes the townspeople is like himself. That is one thing that makes Cory different from the townspeople, namely his politely manner and well education. So, that is the reason why the townspeople are little nervous when they talk to him. It can be concluded that politely manner, well education and wealth will have an effect on the people. One of them is separated from society.

But still he fluttered pulses when he said,
"Good-morning," and he glittered when he walked

 

            In the next stanza (line seven) the words “But still” explain an ego of a man. The writer can say this statement because in the next line there is a word “Glittered” (line eight) that shows the appearance of a wealthy man in the town who has everything. That is way that makes the people assume that he is like a king who has a manner of a perfect man. So, his appearance is assumed by the writer as an ego in facing townspeople. As a perfect man that has good education and politely manner he should not show his wealth by wearing “glittered” in front of the townspeople that is ordinary and poor because it will make the separation between them.

And he was rich - yes, richer than a king -
And admirably schooled in every grace;

 

In this stanza, the speaker tells us that Richard Cory is very rich, but the speaker also exaggerates Cory’s wealth by saying he was “richer than a king”. At this point, the writer can conclude that the speaker really refers to money, not personality and a successful life, because in the next line, the speaker informs us that Cory is educated in every respect. Cory has knowledge and good behavior as well.

In fine, we thought that he was everything
To make us wish
that we were in his place.

 

            The next lines in third stanza talks about the people wish to be like Cory. “He was everything”, Cory is a lucky person that has wealth and good education. Those are impossible things for common people. It is described                                in (line twelve) “To make us wish that we were in his place”, the townspeople dream and hope to be a rich man and have many things like Cory.

So on we worked, and waited for the light,
And went without the meat, and cursed the bread,

 

            The first two lines of the last stanza once more demonstrate the differences between the two socio-economic classes or the contrast between the townspeople and Cory. The people still work for a better life, though they never give up and continue to live. They struggle on and on, they strive to get something like him. Not only work hard, but they also sacrifice because they can not buy everything they want, and they complain about the low quality of the things that they can afford.

            In the last stanza, the irony can be seen clearly. The expectation of the townspeople to Richard Cory is not realized. The townspeople expect that Richard Cory will be happy with all of thing he has, but finally Richard Cory shocks the townspeople because of his action. He ends his life by kill himself or suicide.                   So, in this case the townspeople have been deceived by his appearance that is not appropriate with their expectation. The townspeople assume that all of people in this world that have everything either  material or good education or another else  can make the life of people happy, but Richard Cory is not. Moreover Cory decides to end his life by kill himself. That is the reason which makes the townspeople shocked with Cory’s action.

            Explicitly, the poem shows the lack of Cory’s spiritual value that makes him end his life. “The light” in line one in the last stanza draws the spiritual value. It is stated that people are looking for that spiritual value but Cory does not. For everybody’s life “The light” gives greater meaning but Cory does not realize it. So, because of it Cory does suicide. The spiritual value clarifies in the intent of the poem; it reveals the inner strength of the people and the Cory’s inadequacy. The spiritual value is very needed in everybody’s life. By having the spiritual value, people can balance his life and they are not easy to do bad thing because it can control the people’s life, it can be emotion or something bad. In this case, Cory is lack of spiritual value, so he can not manage his emotion and take over his life.


And Richard Cory, one clam summer night,
Went home and put, a bullet through his head.

 

Finally the writer comes to the last two lines. Richard Cory, the man who has everything, the icon of success and happiness kills himself. He commits suicide in the night, “night” here is considered as peace and calm. The reader here leaves a question about the motive of Cory’s suicide. Robinson also hides the real character of Cory in order to make the reader guess the motive of Cory’s suicide. In short, the poem tells the reader about a failure in facing fate in life that is not appropriate between the expectation and the result.

 

b. The significance of Irony in “Richard Cory

            The poem “Richard Cory” that uses irony inside has some purposes. One of the purpose is Robinson wants to describe his own failure by using the character of Richard Cory. Robinson also wants the reader know that spiritual values in  life is very important. By having the spiritual value, people can balance his life and they are not easy to do bad thing because it can control the people’s life, it can be emotion or something bad. In this case, Cory is lack of spiritual value, so he can not manage his emotion and take over his life. It draws someone that has material but he is lack of spiritual value, it is not enough to make him happy. The spiritual value can be symbolized as a wisdom, insight, goodness and hope. Someone can live happily if there is a balance between material and spiritual. Material can fulfill the needs where it is a concrete thing. Spiritual value can fulfill the inner strength that makes life has a deeper meaning rather than live with a material only. Hence, the fulfillment of the value in life is very important to balance life and make it to be happy and comfortable.

            The most important thing, Robinson wants the reader know and take a valuable lesson from “Richard Cory” where there is always a contrast between high and low class in the real life. God creates each person different each other with his or her strength and weakness. In this poem the contrast is between Cory and his wealth and the townspeople with the light (spiritual value) that they have as the strength to live.

            In the last stanza, it is stated that although the townspeople are not as lucky as Cory who has wealth and everything, they run their lives as usual in order they can survive though it is hard for them. On the other hand, Cory who has everything and live better than the townspeople, he cannot survive or cannot live because of it; on the contrary the townspeople that only have a little wealth but they have a “light” can survive and control their emotion to do not do like Cory does. Here the reader can understand that the most important thing to be happy is to keep alive. And to become happy in life is not enough with material or wealth only but it is also needed something more that that, in this case is the spiritual value.

 

2. The poem “Mr. Flood’s Party”

The poem “Mr. Flood Party” uses an ottava rima staza form. It means that the stanza is build by eight lines. As Mildrof (2003: 168) said that the ottava rima derives from Italian models like the terza rima and the sonnet do, it is a stanza with eight lines rhyming abababcc.

“Mr. Flood’s Party”

Old Eben Flood, climbing alone one night
Over the hill between the town below
And the forsaken upland hermitage
That held as much as he should ever know
On earth again of home, paused warily.
The road was his with not a native near;
And Eben, having leisure, said aloud,
For no man else in Tilbury Town to hear:

 

"Well, Mr. Flood, we have the harvest moon
Again, and we may not have many more;
The bird is on the wing, the poet says,
And you and I have said it here before.
Drink to the bird." He raised up to the light
The jug that he had gone so far to fill,
And answered huskily: "Well, Mr. Flood,
Since you propose it, I believe I will."

Alone, as if enduring to the end
A valiant armor of scarred hopes outworn,
He stood there in the middle of the road
Like Roland's ghost winding a silent horn.
Below him, in the town among the trees,
Where friends of other days had honored him,
A phantom salutation of the dead
Rang thinly till old Eben's eyes were dim.

 

Then, as a mother lays her sleeping child
Down tenderly, fearing it may awake,
He set the jug down slowly at his feet
With trembling care, knowing that most things break;
And only when assured that on firm earth
It stood, as the uncertain lives of men
Assuredly did not, he paced away,
And with his hand extended paused again:

 

 

 

"Well, Mr. Flood, we have not met like this
In a long time; and many a change has come
To both of us, I fear, since last it was
We had a drop together. Welcome home!"
Convivially returning with himself,
Again he raised the jug up to the light;
And with an acquiescent quaver said:
"Well, Mr. Flood, if you insist, I might.

"Only a very little, Mr. Flood--
For auld lang syne. No more, sir; that will do."
So, for the time, apparently it did,
And Eben evidently thought so too;
For soon amid the silver loneliness
Of night he lifted up his voice and sang,
Secure, with only two moons listening,
Until the whole harmonious landscape rang--

 

"For auld lang syne." The weary throat gave out,
The last word wavered; and the song being done,
He raised again the jug regretfully
And shook his head, and was again alone.
There was not much that was ahead of him,
And there was nothing in the town below--
Where strangers would have shut the many doors
That many friends had opened long ago

 

a. Irony in “Mr. Flood Party”

            Like in “Richard Cory” the same theme also occurs in “Mr. Flood’s party, namely the failure in facing the life that is not appropriate between the expectation and the result. So, Robinson uses situational irony. In Mr. Flood’s Party, the loneliness and the weakness in the old age are the main source of his failure in facing life. The weakness is something that is natural and common for the most of old people in the world. In this poem Eben Flood is an old man who tries to find something in a place that he used to live long time ago.

Old Eben Flood, climbing alone one night
Over the hill between the town below
And the forsaken upland hermitage
That held as much as he should ever know

 

In the first stanza in first line the word “climbing” explains that Eben tries to reach what he wants in his old age. To get it, Eben must face full of challenges, because in his old age he must climb “over the hill between the towns below”. So, to reach it, is needed more strength. In the poem “Mr. Flood Party”, Eben or Mr. Flood is an old man living alone on the outskirts of Tilbury town (line eight) has gone into town to fill his loneliness with liquor.  

"Well, Mr. Flood, we have the harvest moon
Again, and we may not have many more;
The bird is on the wing, the poet says,
And you and I have said it here before.
Drink to the bird." He raised up to the light

 

In the second stanza there are two more sets of symbols relate directly to the passage of time, those two symbols are moon and birds. First, “moon” symbolizes an old age. A harvest moon suggests that it is the season of autumn which comes near the end of the year. Autumn is a traditional symbol (used in many pieces of literature) that symbolizes one's nearing the end of life. Moreover, Robinson states that Mr. Flood is a harvest or autumn moon, the fall of the year for late years in life. Another symbol relates to time's passage is the “bird” mentioned by old Eben. “Bird”, is usual1y beautiful, graceful, youth, and vigor. A bird is a symbol of time. The bird is flying away much like the time is "flying by" Mr. Flood. Perhaps it symbolizes the life itself and things are transient, like the bird that flies swiftly away. This paragraph is talking about Eben in the first time starts to be a drunker while Eben in his past time was strong with the grace he had. It shows that the life of Eben is contrast between the past time and the present.

Alone, as if enduring to the end
A valiant armor of scarred hopes outworn,
He stood there in the middle of the road
Like Roland's ghost winding a silent horn.
Below him, in the town among the trees,
Where friends of other days had honored him,
A phantom salutation of the dead
Rang thinly till old Eben's eyes were dim.

 

In the third stanza is perhaps the most important thing in the poem. This stanza is begun with a word that reminds the reader of the central theme, namely by using the word “alone” in the first sentence that draws Eben flood’s life that has no friend at all in his old age.  Eben Flood is in the edge of his life that he has no more hope to survive. It is explained in line two in the third stanza “A valiant armor of scarred hopes outworn”. Someone may feel that Eben is going to die soon because he hears the salutation of the dead in that stanza. All above in the poem is not about death but about Mr. Flood has left of life and does a journey to look for something better in the town and re-evokes his mind to his former friend which honored him in the past time.

 

 

Then, as a mother lays her sleeping child
Down tenderly, fearing it may awake,
He set the jug down slowly at his feet
With trembling care, knowing that most things break;

 

           The most powerful symbol that is used by Robinson in "Mr. Flood's Party" is the image of a mother and her sleeping child. Mr. Flood has just taken a drink from his jug filled with alcohol. Then, “as a mother lays her sleeping child, down tenderly, fearing it may awake, He sets the jug down slowly at his feet, with trembling care" (Robinson lines twenty five-twenty eight). In these lines, the mother symbolizes Mr. Flood and the jug symbolizes his life. Mr. Flood is "lying down" his life as if he is preparing to die. The image of Mr. Flood is someone who is very sad. He does not have anyone in his life to be given the kind of affection as like a mother that can not give a kind of affection to her child. And it is pathetic or sad because Mr. Flood only will feel comfort if he comes to the bottle of alcohol. For Eben, the jug needs a special treatment in order to keep the memory of the past as the only things he had.

And only when assured that on firm earth
It stood, as the uncertain lives of men
Assuredly did not, he paced away,
And with his hand extended paused again:

 

Eben assumes that the memories of the past only give him sadness and sorrow. So that he runs drinking to forget it. He should not become a drunker if he could realize that there are a lot of things that can stop him to be a drunker. Unfortunately it is all too late; Eben finds his new world in a drink and it makes him comfortable with his new world.

 

"Well, Mr. Flood, we have not met like this
In a long time; and many a change has come
To both of us, I fear, since last it was
We had a drop together. Welcome home!"
Convivially returning with himself,
Again he raised the jug up to the light;
And with an acquiescent quaver said:
"Well, Mr. Flood, if you insist, I might.

 

Eben has a new world, namely he becomes a drunker since his loneliness. He feels comfortable becoming a drunker because by drinking a lot, he can forget all of thing alone even though no friends at all that accompany him.

            In the next lines the writer finds the word “light” (line six in fifth stanzas). It explains the reader about the thing that is very important in his life and he can not leave it at all. The thing is a drink. It is as if giving the view that by drinking he can face everything in his life, one of them is loneliness in facing life. On the other hand, if there is no a drink he can not do and face the loneliness in his life.

"Only a very little, Mr. Flood--
For auld lang syne. No more, sir; that will do."
So, for the time, apparently it did,
And Eben evidently thought so too;

 

The phrase “auld lang syne” above is a song that suggests a moment’s re-evocation of better time in the past. It means that by singing this song reminds him in the time where he lived better in the past.

For soon amid the silver loneliness
Of night he lifted up his voice and sang,
Secure, with only two moons listening,
Until the whole harmonious landscape rang--

 

The two moons in line seven represent the alcoholic effect that is drunk by Mr. Flood. But the degree of the effect of the drink indirectly indicates to it, but the most important symbol in the stanza is the song itself, which makes the whole landscape harmonious. It suggests that the song simply represents a moment of heightened experience.  Eben tells to the reader about the reason why he becomes a drunker in that stanza, it is caused by the loneliness of his old age, and he drinks in the night because he does not want the entire world know his failure.

           

"For auld lang syne." The weary throat gave out,
The last word wavered; and the song being done,
He raised again the jug regretfully
And shook his head, and was again alone.

 

Actually Eben regrets his action in facing the fact his life. Eben realizes that becoming a drunker does not solve the problems. It is done because of his loneliness in old age and no friends at all accompany him, on the contrary in the past he lived better with many friends. So, he keeps drinking only for reminding the memory in the past time.

 

 

 

There was not much that was ahead of him,  
And there was
nothing in the town below
Where strangers would have shut the many doors
That many friends had opened
long ago.

 

Finally Eben realizes that all he had in the past time now is only a memory to keep. Now, no friends at all that accompany him in facing the life in the old age. So he assumes only a drink that can accompany his loneliness in facing the life. In short, the irony in “Mr. Flood’s Party” occurs when his expectation to live happy in the old age is not realized. Furthermore he can not face his life in the loneliness because no more friends accompany him. Hence, he feels frustrated and runs to alcohol in order to forget his sadness and loneliness in facing fact in life.

                         

b. The significance of irony in “Mr. Flood Party”

            Irony that is used in “Mr. Flood’s party also has some purposes. In this poem Robinson wants the reader know the reason why Mr. Flood becomes a drunker. Mr. Flood runs in to alcohol is caused by his misery in facing life and his loneliness in old age. He has no friends at all. The effort of old Eben to look for his former friends in the town is not realized and there is no hope at all to find him. He can only memorize his past and regretting him. So, to forget his dreaming finding his former friend and his better life in the past and also his loneliness in the old age, he runs in to alcohol.

            At the end Mr. Flood truly fails in facing his life. To forget it he runs into alcohol. The effect of alcohol makes him talk to him self and talk to other though there is no one hears him. As the result the life of Eben in his old time is full of misery and no friends at all. He cannot have fun anymore with his former friends because the located of his former friend is in long distance and eben can not find him because of his weakness in old age, it causes he can only remind the memory of the past with his former friend. From the statement above, it can be concluded that eben’s expectation to live better by looking for his former friend to accompany his life is not realized because of his weakness in old age and the result eben can not find his former friend and he is frustrated. He runs to alcohol to accompany his loneliness but it does not solve the problem. Moreover, he is separated by the society because of his action and he has no friend at all. At the end he regrets his action. In this case his expectation to live better in the old age is not appropriate with the result that makes him sorrow and sad and it can be called irony of situation that every body can face it in real life.

Finally the Author wants the reader know the valuable lesson that can be taken from the poem “Mr. Flood’s party”. He wants the reader learn that becoming a drunker is useless because it does not solve the problem. Furthermore it will make the problem bigger than before and bring the regret at the end. 

 

 

 

C. Situational irony in the two poems of Edwin Arlington Robinson.

            After analyzing the two poems of Edwin Arlington Robinson above, it can be concluded that irony which is used in both Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poems is situational irony. The writer can decide it because he analyzes from the meaning of situational irony it self. As Perrine (1970:233) states that the most important thing for the storywriter is the discrepancy between appearance and reality or between expectation and fulfillment, or between what is and what would seem appropriate. So that it can be said that situational irony is a discrepancy between the expected result and actual results. In this case, the two of Edwin Arlington Robinson’s poem are included. In this two poems Robinson uses situational irony because he wants his idea is easier to be understood by the readers.

            The idea of the two poems is related to human’s daily life. “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood Party” are poems that draw the life surround him. The main theme which is used by Robinson from the two poems is the failure of person in facing the life that usually happens in society.

            One of his best poems describes the weakness of a man in balancing the material and spiritual value in his life, that poem is “Richard Cory”. In this poem Cory is drawn as a perfect man by the townspeople surround him. He has everything, wealth, good education, and also good behavior. Thus, the townspeople assume and expect that everything he has (material and spiritual) can make him happy, but he is not. The irony in this poem occurs when the expectation of the townspeople to Cory to become happy person is not realized. Furthermore he ends his life by doing suicide. After reading the poem and the significance of it, perhaps the reader can use it as reference that the most important thing to be happy is to keep alive. And to become happy in life is not enough with material or wealth only but it is also needed something more that that, in this case is the spiritual value. Besides that, the poem also reflects the difference between lower class society and the higher-class society. The difference in this poem is on the economic level and education.

            The next poem also describes the failure of a man in facing the life, that poem is “Mr. Flood Party”. In this poem Eben is drawn as an old age man. He is drawn as if he is a “harvest moon”, it means that he is very old. In his old age, he wants to live happily. Unfortunately he is not because he lives alone and no friend at all accompanies him in his old age. Thus, it forces him running in to alcohol and he becomes a drunker. The loneliness and misery in facing life is the causes he runs in to alcohols. His action is more or less only for forgetting his sadness condition. In this poem the irony occurs when Mr. Flood hopes to live happily in his old age is not realized. He expects to live happily is like in the past time when he used to live with his friend. Unfortunately it is not realized. Now, he has no friend at all and runs in to alcohol to forget all of it. In this poem the valuable lesson that can be learnt is to solve the problem is not necessary to be a drunker. Because there is no advantage to be a drunker, furthermore it will make the problem is bigger than before. There are many things that can be done to make the life more valuable, one of them is doing good activity more and more to prevent something that is bad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAPTER V
CONCLUSION AND SUGGESTION

 

This chapter presents conclusion and suggestion. The conclusion consists of a summary of the discussion from the previous chapter. The researcher also would like to give suggestions for reader and next researcher that want to analyze poems.

 

A. Conclusion

Poem is a kind of literature; it can be defined as an expression of valuable imaginative experience that is delivered with the chosen language (Perrine, 1974: 553). In this case, of course, the chosen language must be meaningful words. In the example, the words “beautiful Rose” in poetry does not refer to the beautiful flower, it can be meant as a beautiful girl. So, understanding the meaning of a word in a poem is very important. The aim is to know the whole context of that poem.

In this thesis, the writer analyses the part of the poem, namely irony of figurative language. In this case, irony that is analyzed is situational irony because it is appropriate with the poems which tell about a contrast or discrepancy between appearance and reality or between expectation and fulfillment. As Perrine (1970:233) states that the most important thing for the storywriter is the discrepancy between appearance and reality or between expectation and fulfillment, or between what is and what would seem appropriate. So that it can be said that situational irony is a discrepancy between the expected result and actual results. After analyzing the poem, the writer finds the result. The results of the two poems are:

1. Generally, the two poems talk about the problem of human being which is sometimes ironic. The poems also reflect or portrait the personal experience of Robinson. Hence, he can describe it well in the form of literary work, in this case is poem. Basically, the idea of the two poems; “Richard Cory” and “Mr. Flood’s Party” is the failure of expectation into reality. So that, Robinson uses irony of situation to dramatize it. This kind of irony is the most appropriate element to express the expectation, which is not fulfilled.

2.  In “Richard Cory”, the irony can be used to criticize the difference between the low classes society and the high ones at that time. All of people compete to get the high class position at that time. Robinson wants the reader know and take a valuable lesson from “Richard Cory” where there is always a contrast between high and low class in the real life. God creates each person different each other with his or her strength and weakness. In this poem the contrast is between Cory and his wealth and the townspeople with the light (spiritual value) that they have as the strength to live because they does not have a wealth like Cory, they only have little wealth which is only enough  to survive in a day.

 

 3. The next poem is “Mr. Flood’s Party”; generally, the poem gives the reader a view of uncomfortable life namely living alone in the old age. Here, Robinson uses irony to dramatize the loneliness in life that may cause someone to do something useless is like in this poem that tells about Mr. Flood who is frustrated in facing loneliness in his old age, thus he becomes an alcoholic to solve the problem, however, many things can be done to solve the problem besides to be an alcoholic. Through the poem “Mr. Flood’s Party”, Robinson wants to deliver his idea about being alone in the old age is not good at all. People need companion to share each other.

                 Finally, in this study the problems have been solved by using the proper elements in analyzing the poems. Furthermore this study is hoped to become a reference for the readers in order they can choose the best choice in their lives and they are not easy to surrender in facing the life by doing something bad.

 

B. Suggestion

In this thesis the writer chooses to analyze poem as the object of research. The reason why the writer chooses the literary work especially poem because by analyzing poem, it is like comprehending the real life because most of poem are picture of real life. Based on the conclusion above, the writer would like to give some suggestions both for the reader and the next researcher.

 

1.  For the readers, they are hoped to be able to understand and to comprehend this poem well in order they can enrich their vocabulary and knowledge. Furthermore, they can analyze the contextual meaning of the poem and make the poem by themselves.

 

2.  For next researchers who choose the poem as their object of research, the writer is so proud of, because they have the same view as the writer has. There are so many objects of research that can be taken by the next researcher because there are many elements of literary work especially poem, such as kind of other figurative language, lyrics, tone, nature  and so on. The writer analyzes the irony of Robinson’s poem and the writer hopes that the next writers can choose the other object to be analyzed, and they can produce better work than what the writer does.
 
   
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