Punishment, Witness, and dehumanization are common in the world today illustrated in poems such as, “Punishment” by Seamus Heaney and “Capital Punishment” by Sherman Alexie. The poems give the world a different perspectives based on the authors viewpoint, yet both authors seem to favor punishment. Therefore everyone in their life deserves to be punished based on the authors work or even a witness for one reason or another to speak for something they have done or witness. These authors wanted to show a strong feeling towards punishment whether or not the crime was minor or major. In “Punishment” the speaker was a witness to dehumanizing punishment of the bog women. In “Capital Punishment” the cook was a witness to a cruel punishment. Even though both authors focused on different types of punishment they both expressed how witnessing and dehumanization have a vital role in different situations. Can punishment and race have factors that can change one another? Can the ethnicity of a criminal effect the severity of the punishment bestowed upon them? The ethnicity of a criminal or witness can determine how cruel and usual a punishment can be towards the criminal or witness. Witnessing is seeing an event, crime, or even an accident take place. In the poem the author talks about witnessing a horrible event. Punishment begins with a person possible the speaker or even the poet hanging with a noose around her neck and seems to be dead. The speaker seems like he could have witness the entire death. He describes the bog woman as, “she was a barked sapling that is dug out oak- bone, brain firkin: her shaved head like a stubble of black corn, her blindfold a soiled bandage, her noose a ring to store the memories of love” (Heaney, 1157).Even though he describes her as a scapegoat why does the speaker not speak up for this cruel dehumanizing punishment. The punishment was so outrages that the audience felt her pain. However, the speaker first says “my poor...
Cited: Alexie, Sherman. "Capital Punishment." Making Literature Matter: An Anthology for Readers and Writers. By John Schilb and John Clifford. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin 's, 2000. N. page. Print.
Heaney, Seamus. "Punishment." Making Literature Matter: An Anthology for Readers and Writers. By John Schilb and John Clifford. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin 's, 2000. 1156-157. Print.
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