Giving Voice to the Voiceless: A Feminist Approach to Carol Ann Duffy’s Poetry


Carol Ann Duffy, the foremost Contemporary British poet Laureate, presents gender issues in her own distinguishable way and this distinctiveness comes from her individual confidence. She explores everyday experience in her poetry and this article is especially based on Carol Ann Duffy’s collection of poems The World’s Wife (1999) which reflects her own feminist view of the world and recalls historical, mythical and religious figures. The collection acts as an arena for formerly voiceless woman who have been marginalised to a subservient role under the guise of men and repudiated their own story and their own voice. Duffy’s characters abdicate all feminine gender norms; they have casual sex, discard marriage, smoke, drink, swear, and rebel against society’s expectations in order to subvert feminine archetypes. That is to say, in this collection of poetry, Duffy gives voice to the voiceless women, looks for what it is like to be a woman and uses dramatic monologue to covey her thoughts through these characters. . The speakers of the poems are dominant, bold, colourful and unapologetically female; but there is also male voice, be it mediated through the female voice. The aim of this article is to anatomize male-female relationship dynamic, subversion of gender stereotypes; and to analyze the wishes, dreams and the ability of the woman to change her position in the world not just as a daughter, a wife or a mother but rather as an individual with full access to human rights and duties.

Keywords: Feminism, Stereotype, duffy, subservient

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 30-41 (Download PDF)

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