The Arsenal at Springfield Essay

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Poquette has a bachelor's degree in English and specializes in writing about literature. In the following essay, Poquette discusses Longfellow's manipulation of structure, tenses, and sounds to emphasize his antiwar message in his poem.

When one reads "The Arsenal at Springfield" for the first time, Longfellow's plea for peace is obvious. The gritty images from past wars send a very clear statement that Longfellow wants peace. Some critics, like Newton Arvin, have criticized the poem for this fact. In his 1855 book, Longfellow: His Life and Work, Arvin notes that the poem "is only half successful if only because the antiwar theme is developed so fully in direct rhetorical terms." However, once readers dig into the structure of the poem and start to see the ways in which Longfellow has magnified the effect of his poem, they can see that it is this blatant quality that makes the poem...

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This section contains 1,614 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Arsenal at Springfield Study Guide
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The Arsenal at Springfield from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.