Analysis of the First Epistle of Alexander Pope's "An Essay on Man"
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Discuses Pope's image of the universe. Theme of ambivalent position of man in attempting to play God. Satirical depiction of man as a "mock hero." Pope's purpose in the poem as desiring mankind to conform to the universal scheme. Poetic techniques employed including tone, structure, use of antithesis, imagery, paradox.
From the Paper:"In the first epistle of An Essay on Man, Alexander Pope presents a secularized and objective perspective of humanity and nature, which is freed from the bias of specific religions or supernatural beliefs (Kallich 3; Mack 525). According to Pope’s image of the universe, God has created a harmonious world consisting of different components, of which man is only a part. Therefore, in God’s “great chain” (Pope 1.33), man only occupies a “rank” in the structure (Pope 2.48). Throughout the epistle, Pope highlights the pride of men who aspire to be angels (Pope 4.126) and the ultimately to play the role of “God of God” (Pope 4.122). Through his egocentric perspective of the world, man believes that the world is created only to satisfy his own needs and desires (Pope 5.131-40). However, according to Pope, in reality, God’s actions serve a larger purpose that extends..."
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Analysis of the First Epistle of Alexander Pope's "An Essay on Man" (2003, April 12) Retrieved April 19, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/analysis-of-the-first-epistle-of-alexander-pope-an-essay-on-man-24419/
"Analysis of the First Epistle of Alexander Pope's "An Essay on Man"" 12 April 2003. Web. 19 April. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/analysis-of-the-first-epistle-of-alexander-pope-an-essay-on-man-24419/>