Examples Of Individualism In The Road Not Taken By Robert Frost

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Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken” and “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” both depict how choices have a major impact on life. Both poems are about a person traveling in the woods who are forced to choose a path in life. The speaker in both poems goes through two different decision-making processes due to age and principles. In the “Road Not Taken” the poet chooses a path of individualism due to his young age and lack of responsibility to anyone, while the speaker in the “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” decides based on his obligations to society. Tension between an individual and society are shown through both speakers decision making process using imagery based on nature, indecisive tone, and visual metaphors . The tone of sadness …show more content…
Robert Frost gained his individuality working on a farm in New England, where he dealt with isolation and the feeling of loneliness, this lead to self-realization. Which is shown in “The Road Not Taken” when the poet picks the “less traveled” road and how his choice “made all the difference” throughout his life.(19-20). Failure to pick the more popular path stems from his uniqueness and absence of echoes in the woods, not having anyone influencing his decision left him with full responsibility for his actions. Unlike in the “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”, when the speaker “gives his harness bells a shake/to ask if there is some mistake/ the only other sound’s the sweep/ of easy wind and downy flake”(9-12). The sound of the bells shaking symbolizes the speaker asking members of society for help in deciding what path to take. While the sound of the wind represents the echoes of opinions instilled in his mind by modern society, once the wind gets to the “downy flake” a decision was finally made. Ultimately, the speaker does not hold full responsibility for his actions because it was based on the expectations of others, it shows interaction with society causes people to make selfless decisions. According to Frost 's biography, he developed his love of nature from being “versed in country things”, ironically he ended up selling his farm and …show more content…
The speaker of “The Road Not Taken” reminisces on his chosen path“with a sigh/somewhere ages and ages hence”(16-17). In old age the poet now regrets his choice which is shown using a “sigh”, he has no idea where the other path could of took him. This contradicts his argument earlier in the poem when he claims both roads are “just as fair”, he debates whether he should of picked the more popular road that was filled with societal norms and expectations (6). The poet doubts his individual instincts since he lacked reinforcement from society behind his decision. But ultimately proves to be complacent with his decision with the lines “that has made all the difference”(20) While the speaker in “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” has the opposite dilemma , he ultimately wants to pick the individual path, by referring to the woods as “lovely, dark and deep” in the beginning of the last stanza. Death in the woods was the most appealing path to the poet but using repetition, the poet convinces himself to take the road back to modern society. This shown when the speaker says “I have promises to keep”, then repeats the phrase “And miles to go before I sleep/ And miles to go before I sleep”(13-16). Regret is displayed in the form of repetition because the character wants to die, but his desire to rest will not be

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