Interpretation of Robert Brownings My Last Duchess Essay

This essay has a total of 759 words and 3 pages.

Interpretation of Robert Brownings My Last Duchess

I read a critical article on Robert Browning's "My Last Duchess". I confess it was harder
to find something in the NCLC's than I would've thought. There was a considerable
accumulation of critiques on Browning's work, but very little on "My Last Duchess".

The article I found concentrated mostly on the Duke in the poem, and our reactions to him,
stating that "[t]he utter outrageousness of the Duke's behavior makes condemnation the
least interesting response…" The title of the article was "Sympathy versus Judgment".
Some of its points are that the Duke controls the entire poem, that it being a monologue
was significant, and that he is almost easy to sympathize with and like. The article
discusses Ferarra's nature and his self-involvement which allows the goodness of the
Duchess to "shine through the Duke's utterance."

It goes on to speak about sympathy in general and how Browning "delighted in making a case
for the apparently immoral position", how he found dramatic monologues the best form to do
so, and how he went about it. It keeps going for a couple more pages on things which I
will not go into because they have little relevance to any interpretation of "My Last
Duchess".

The article as it pertained to my poem was fine; I wish I could have found one which went
into more depth as opposed to just discussing immoral characters and our empathy for them.
I didn't particularly care for the lawyerly torrent of words that were used, either. I am
Continues for 2 more pages >>




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