Mending Wall Essay

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In the following excerpt, Trachtenberg discusses how Frost thematically reveals the complexities of humanity through the relationship between nature and man, as well as communal and personal space. He asks the reader to contemplate the meaning of the words neighbor and boundary.

"Mending Wall" has two characters: its narrator and his neighbor, owners of adjacent farms, who meet each Spring to repair the stone wall that stands between their properties. The narrator, at first glance, seems to take a somewhat skeptical attitude toward property. (We shall see that his attitude is in fact more complicated.) The poem opens with his words "Something there is that doesn't love a wall"—a phrase he repeats later, making it a kind of slogan for the position on property he personifies. That position seems to reject human attempts to inscribe the arbitrary divisions of property holdings on the land. The narrator...

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This section contains 2,232 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Mending Wall Study Guide
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