Mirror Sylvia Plath

Topics: Joyce Carol Oates, Confessional poetry, Sylvia Plath Pages: 4 (1000 words) Published: April 27, 2009
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Review of Criticism: “Mirror” of Sylvia Plath.

Freedman, William. “ The Monster in Plath’s ‘Mirror,’ “ in Papers on Language and literature, Vol 29, No. 2 Spring, 1993 pp.152-66.

William Freedman describes “Mirror” as a search for the self, to discover one self in the person of the mirror. The fish that appears in the mirror is the dark side of the mirror, a devouring monster. The glass to Freedman suggests the woman writer. He also mentions the image of maternal self-annihilation and sacrifice; She is the reflection of the mirror as a passive servant. The mirror reflects reality and the woman writer can only reflect male desires and ideals.

Johnson, Jeannine. Essay for Poetry for Students, Gale, 1997.

Jeannine Johnson tells us how Sylvia Plath uses personification to give the mirror a human capacity for speech. It both describes the mirror literally and it symbolically describes poetry. She feels that the mirror has an unemotional character that human being lacks but she also mentions the mirror’s capacity to meditate and reflect which is a play on words. She describes the fact that the Mirror is not just to look in to check her appearance but also to obtain information about her basic identity. Her own tears give the water to fill the lake, which really stands for the mirror, which in turn stands for poetry. The title of the poem is simply “mirror” suggesting “a mirror”, “to mirror”. In the end, the mirror only reflects truth back to the beholder.

Newton, Joshua. “Discussing Sylvia Plath’s “Mirror”.“ January 08,2009.

Newton compares « Mirror » with the confessional quality of Plath’s other poems. He feels that the poem is honest but reflexive and that she is talking of herself and the third person as if she was somebody else. The writer sees another meaning behind the words and...
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