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Fame, Fortune, And Celebrities Essay, Research Paper
The Cost of Fame and Fortune on Celebrity Figures
JENNIFER ANISTON AND BRAD PITT WED PICTURES HERE! Madonna s a MAMA again! TOM AND NICOLE SPLIT WHY? These are just three examples of headlines I have seen across the supermarket tabloids over the past year. In reality, we know that two more people tied the knot, another mom-to-be gave birth, and one more couple unfortunately divorced. But come on! This is Jennifer and Brad (the two most beautiful people on earth), Madonna (enough said), and Tom and Nicole (such a lovely couple) we re talking about here! Although we know nothing about these people besides their latest role in a movie, we as a society are so compelled to get the latest dirt on all our favorite celebrities. Their lives are so glamorous, aren t they? We crave every single detail of their lives, in hopes to find at least ONE quality that we normal people could possibly relate to. Yet what we don t realize is that Jennifer and Brad, Madonna, Tom and Nicole, and all our other Hollywood favorites really are like you and I they just live their lives in the public eye. Everything they do is automatically put on a pedestal as glamorous, enchanting, and part of the American Dream. Edwin Arlington Robinson proves that celebrities are normal people, although their images are often exaggerated and revered in the poem, Richard Cory .
The poem begins with Richard Cory walking downtown, an area in which the lower class often lives and works. This suggests that Richard Cory may not feel as high above the lower class as they think he does. His walking downtown is maybe his way of showing the peasants that he is a normal person, but just famous. The peasants refer to themselves as people of the pavement giving the reader a sense that they felt below Richard Cory (2). In this stanza, Robinson chooses to use words such as crown and imperially , giving Cory a sort of royal air, again raising him far above the lower class.
The second stanza goes into further detail about Richard Cory, and continues to butter up his image for the reader. The speaker noted that Cory was always quietly arrayed/And he was always human when he talked (5-6). These two lines prove how average of a person Richard Cory really is. We often think celebrities are always flamboyant, but Cory s quietness and humanness quickly strike that thought. When the peasant describes him as always human when he talks , we as readers find a sense of connection with him (6). That statement, with the word human included, brings Richard Cory back to our level. The peasants once again exaggerate Cory s image towards the end of the poem by recounting how he fluttered pulses and glittered when he walked (7-8). This glowing image that Robinson gives Cory again puts him on that pedestal of celebrity status.
Robinson uses the word king to describe Cory s wealth in line 9 of the third stanza, again comparing him to royalty. As the peasant goes on with, And he was rich yes, richer than a king–/And admirably schooled in every grace (9-10), he shows how envious he and the rest of lower class is of Cory s wealth and education. The last two lines of the stanzas perfectly state how we as normal people yearn to be just like the celebrities we look up to: In fine, we thought that he was everything/To make us wish that we were in his place (11-12).
The fourth stanza finishes up the poem by recounting the night Richard Cory killed himself. Robinson cleverly built up Cory s celebrated image in the first three stanzas, making his suicide in the last stanza a much bigger blow. The peasants begin to describe a normal night of work, and in the last line, calmly state that Cory has killed himself. Richard Cory s suicide proves to the peasants and the audience that a celebrated, famous life doesn t always equal a happy life. Cory s suicide proves that to be false. Celebrities are regular people too, with the same everyday problems that we have.
Richard Cory is a prime example of how fame, wealth, and power can get to people in the end. Inside, we know that celebrities are normal, down-to-earth people, just with lives that are always in the spotlight. If Richard Cory had everything important in life fame, fortune, power and attention why would he want to throw it all away? The fact that he did end his life proves to the reader and the peasants that a celebrated life is not always as great as it seems.
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