The Unknown Citizen

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    The Unknown Citizen

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    The Person Behind the Mask Every person is different and everyone has their own opinions. THe community that a person is born in is not a choice made by the individual. Two pieces of literature that really bring out these ideas are, “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” by Ursula K. LeGuin and “The Unknown Citizen” by W.H. Auden. In both pieces the author brings out a situation where a person is unhappy with their life and how the people around them live. “The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas” tells an amazing story of a perfect city that gets all the great things in life at the cost of a little boy suffering. As well in the “Unknown Citizen” Auden tells a story about a government official reviewing a unhappy man’s life to determine whether he…

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    Exploring the similarities and differences in two poems, W. H. Auden’s “The Unknown Citizen” and Edwin Arlington Robinson’s “Richard Cory”, is done to demonstrate how both author’s subjects are assumed to be happy, yet each is isolated in a unique way. The poems individually present external facts about each character, and the authors use the different narrators in the poems to illustrate the viewpoint of someone slightly removed. This characterizes the separation between the protagonists and…

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    true identity of a man. In “The Unknown Citizen,” W.H. Auden presents a Big Brother like state that knows everything about its citizens except for what really matters; this state views individuality as irrelevant and judges citizens based solely on their relation to society as a whole. The bureaucrat leaves out important emotional events involving the unknown citizen that seem vital to the judging of his character. Auden uses a speaker whose viewpoints contradict his own to present his argument…

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    H. Auden. One may ask, what makes him a hero? Does he have any power? Well, the answer is no. The man in this poem is just a normal citizen, who lives a quiet a common life as everyone else. So, what makes him a hero? The man was a soldier. He fought for his country till the war was over. He went home and lived his life without any recognition for what he has done. But, that does not bothered him. He just wanted to fit in and be normal. Despite for what he has done, he does not ask much. He…

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    et Decorum est & The Unknown Citizen Verbal irony is something that can be used in our everyday life. Auden’s poem’s title, “The Unknown Citizen” begins with a verbal irony. Owen mocks war in his poem, “Dulce et Decorum Est” by showing how sweet and fitting it is to die for one’s country. Both of the poems use irony to present to the reader the pity of war, how there is nothing heroic about the “unknown citizen” and how the two poets have a similar intention on writing these poems. "Dulce…

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    “Citizen Khan” written by Kathryn Schulz describes the struggle of immigration in the early 1900’s and attempts to decipher what it truly means to be American by turning the spotlight on a popular Afghan immigrant turned Mexican food vendor, Zarif Khan. The article begins with the initial shock of Khans death in 1964. Even though he was based in Wyoming, the news broke out in many different places such as South Dakota, California, and Colorado. In the papers however, Khans real name was barely…

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    Both Auden and Orwell use specific word choice to create the characterization of oppressed citizens to warn readers that too much totalitarian government control of its citizens can lead to a lack of individualism. In Auden’s “The Unknown Citizen”, the Unknown Citizen has no identity, his life is very conventional in that he does not distinguish himself from any of his fellow citizens. The Unknown Citizen was always a hard worker, “yet he wasn’t a scab or odd in his views” (Line 9). Auden…

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    “The Unknown Citizen,” written by W. H. Auden, is a poem that describes the life of man lived a life that most people would see as ideal. The man illustrated by this poem did what society expected him to do which resulted in a model life. This poem, however, can be seen in more than one way. Some may see the story in the poem as a description of a man who had an unfulfilling life because he did only what was expected of him. Instead of trying something new, exploring the world, or making a…

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    along with the crowd, which is described in “The Unknown Citizen”. A happy life is a life lived like the person being described in “Invictus”. “Invictus” relates to my attitude toward a happy life because I am unconquerable. “In the fell clutch of circumstance, I have not winced nor cried aloud,” are powerful lines from the poem. In other words, the quote means when life gets complicated, he/she does not complain or whine. As the poem says, not crying out when an event goes wrong will…

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    The Unknown Citizen by W. H. Auden describes a man that statistically, on paper, was a “saint” as stated in the poem. He had no criminal offenses on his record, and those who vaguely knew him could characterize his behavior as normal, citing him to be a model citizen. The overall consensus of the reports in the poem point to this man being completely normal, functional, and happy. But, these are only opinions of those who observed his behavior, and essentially the way he chose to spend his…

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