Seamus Heaney Writing Styles in The Singer's House

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Setting

As in most of Heaney's poetry, and Irish culture for that matter, setting is an important issue. In this poem, setting becomes an equally important technique. Although Heaney takes the reader on a journey through his mind, offering imagery of different places from the past, present, and potential future, he anchors the poem with the discussion of two cities, Carrickfergus and Gweebarra. The italics help denote that somebody is speaking these two words, but they also serve to underscore the stability of these two places as the actual settings of the poem. Heaney uses Carrickfergus to represent a nostalgic view of Ireland's past, incorporating the salt mines—formerly one of Carrickfergus's booming industries—to bring the past back to life in his mind. Heaney uses Gweebarra, on the other hand, to discuss Ireland's future. While he is wistful in the beginning about losing the salt mines and other...

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This section contains 711 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Singer's House Study Guide
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Poetry for Students
The Singer's House from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.