The character of Death in "Because I Could Not Stop For Death" Essay

The character of Death in "Because I Could Not Stop For Death", 493 words essay example

Essay Topic:death,character

The character of Death in "Because I Could Not Stop For Death", brings much ease to the reader and shows that death is not "scary". "As we can see throughout the poem, "Death" is constantly personified as a 'gentlemen'. As the result, the usage of personification makes it easy for the reader to imagine and visualize the whole storyline" (Ikhsanti 2). Death is a gentleman, he is perceived as kind and polite. He is not fearful. "The speaker describes his "Civility" and the way he "kindly" stopped for her. From this small amount of evidence, many have assumed Death to be a gentleman. Others have believed him to be a more menacing character, again upon scant evidence" (Priddy 218). Some people do argue that death is a threatening character but throughout the poem, there is no evidence to prove that there is nothing but innocence in that carriage. "The speaker clearly implies that 'Death' is not something to be afraid of. Instead of offending, Death is described with such kindness. Enchanted by his kindness, the woman has no other options but to leave her mortal life behind" (Ikhsanti 2). Death is nothing more than a courteous suiter taking her to her next destination which is eternity.
In the fourth line, Dickinson reveals that the speaker and Death are not alone. "The carriage held but just ourselves And Immortality" (Dickinson 1). Dickinson's use of personification is exemplified again when we meet the third occupier in the carriage named Immortality. Immortality means the ability to live forever in eternity. The speaker is ready for her journey of eternal life with Immortality. Death was all around Emily Dickinson in her life and she had lost many loved ones in her lifespan which caused her curiosity in immortality and afterlife. "She believed that human being was mortal and had a strong faith in life after death" (Vasanthi 3). In "Because I Could Not Stop For Death", Dickinson shows that there is more to life after death. Death through our eyes is painful but with a different perspective, we see that the long life of eternity is a blissful and comforting thing. "Since then 'tis centuries, and yet each Feels shorter than the day" (Dickinson 1). "Back to the present, the speaker dramatizes the situation by saying how her death- which is happened centuries ago- is still fresh on her mind as centuries "feels shorter than the Day" in afterlife. It allows the listener to feel what the speaker feels, to understand how 'new' the experience for the speaker is" (Ikhsanti 3). The author of this article shows Dickinson felt that eternity feels like a blink of an eye and is not something to worry about. "There is a sense that the journey has never ended and never will. There is much eternity up ahead, for death is a realm without temporal-spatial parameters" (Joly 5). Dickinson shows that death is long compared to our short life here on earth and there is comfort in knowing that.

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