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Language in James Autry's "Recessions"

The relationship between language and content in this poem is thoroughly examined.

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I have tried to address your problem, using the points raised in it to organise my response.

(1) Relationship between language and content in the poem

James Autry's poem "Recessions" conveys through stream-of-consciousness the meditations of an average person on the cause of economic recession. It uses an informal tone and ordinary language to describe the bleakness of a recession and to engage the reader.

The speaker of the poem uses ordinary language, even colloquialisms, to convey his/her frustration at the endless cycle of work without a satisfactory resolution to the problem. Despite the work of ordinary individuals, the economy does not come out of recession. The speaker asks why "business is no good for no reason,/ when everything done right turns out wrong, when the Fed does something, and interest rates do something/ and somebody's notion of consumer confidence does something" (lines 3-8), showing that the mechanisms at work behind the economy are vague to the average worker. Furthermore, the use of the words "the Fed", "something" and "somebody" suggest that the reasons behind the success or failure of the economy are not comprehensible and are thus attributed to these vagaries. The words are vague and blame an ...

Solution Summary

James Autry's poem, "Recessions," is discussed.