Pastiche, Parody and Reply

Pastiche, Parody and Reply

There are different reasons why two poems are selected for your comparison. Sometimes the poems are directly linked because one of the poems is a reply, pastiche or parody for the first poem.

Pastiche, Parody and Reply

It is helpful if you are familiar with what these terms mean:

A pastiche is a popular literary style. It is found in prose and poetry. A pastiche is where a writer attempts to imitate the style of a particular writer or period. Often the writer will attempt to bring to the style his or her own interpretation.

A parody is a humorous piece of writing. The writer mimics or exaggerates the style of another writer.

This can be done for a number of reasons:

  • to expose the faults of another writer;
  • purely for fun;
  • or to give a fresh interpretation of a particular style or subject.

Occasionally you will be set a poem that is a clear response to another poem.

This may be done in a number of ways. The poem may be addressed to the original poet or to something from the poem itself. In this type of poem, it is important to consider why the poet has done this and what he or she adds to your reading of the first poem.

A poem, which is replying to another poem, may or may not be a pastiche or parody.

Sometimes a poet takes the subject matter of another and overtly rewrites the poem in a different style. In this situation you should consider very carefully what is gained or lost by changing the style of the poem.

  • Does the poet alter your interpretation of the other poem?
  • Does the reader gain anything from reading both poems?

Be careful how you use the terms described above. Just because two poems are about the same subject such as "love" or "death" does not mean that one of the poem are any of these four types.

Look for clear indications such as overt references to the other poem, such as reference to the poet or specific aspects of the poem.

Pastiche, Parody and Reply

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