`` Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night `` Essay

1149 Words Mar 2nd, 2016 5 Pages
Art, death, and mental illness, all mysterious, all undefined they instill fear and evoke curiosity they require us to think and force us to accept that not everything can be explained. These three ideas, though separate are fundamentally linked in our society. Death has been explored through art since its inception from Dylan Thomas’s “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night” to the Harrowing "Poupées" by Michel Nedjar. This motif of death is reflected not just in the art but in the artists themselves. Artists dying young tragic deaths is a story we hear all too often and though causes range there is a disproportionately high number of suicides by artists, with mental illness often to blame. Many of history’s greatest artists have faced mental illness yet few reflect it as well as Sylvia Plath the woman whose life, work and legacy left the whole world asking about the link between artists and mental illness.

Sylvia was born in 1932 in Boston, Massachusetts to Otto and Aurelia Plath. Her father was college professor who had emigrated from Germany and her mother was one of his students. In 1940 Plath’s father died when she was only eight years old. Years later Plath would write about her father in the poem “Daddy” revealing his authoritarian nature and the difficult relationship she had with him which had come to influence a number of her works. As a result of their financial situation the Plath’s moved to Wellesley, Massachusetts where Sylvia began developing into a…

Related Documents