Unit: The Changing Australian Voice ('The Man from Snowy River' and 'Municipal Gum') Essay

Words: 1381
Pages: 6

AUGUST 13, 2014


Task Requirements
You are to create a representation of TWO of the poems studied in class and an explanation or rationale of your work. In this task you are to consider the values and assumptions underlying the voice in the poems and explore the effect of changing context on those values and assumptions. How you decide to represent these ideas on the page is entirely up to you, but you should consider the most appropriate visual techniques to convey your ideas. Your visual must adhere to the following criteria; however, any changes to the criteria must be negotiated with your teacher.
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The gum tree is used as an extended metaphor throughout the poem. In contrast, the hard bitumen acts as a contradiction to nature and hence the Aboriginals. Bitumen, a man-made substance, is juxtaposed with the gum tree, an element of nature. This extends to the culminated rift of differences between the
Europeans and the Aboriginals. The resulting imagery, starkly dissonant, is a result of the rhyme and meter present in these two lines.
Furthermore, the analogy used for the bird, contrasted with the domestication of the horse highlights the detriments of the entrapment of the Aboriginal culture, as shown through:
“And the wild bird calls, here you seems to me, like that poor cart-horse”
The consequences of the displacement of the Aboriginals is synonymously equated to the clash of characters between the Europeans and the Aboriginals. Whilst the Europeans romanticise nature, the
Aboriginals exemplify nature, and the disaccord of the two parties are noticeable through the contrast between the wild bird and the domesticated, displaced, supressed cart-horse.
Overall the voice of the poem is one alike the change in social context – discordant and displaced, shown through the contrasting images juxtaposed to each other.
I represented the changing context of both poems