The Existing Relationship Between Form and Content Within Pope's Rape of the Lock.
The Rape of the Lock was written to bring peace between two families after a conflict arose when a young man snipped off a lock of a woman's hair. Problem is how do you interpret this act? Is it a trivial act that people should not make a serious matter? Overall, this poem deals with humanity in relation to itself and to society. The structure of the poem is thematic. It has a plot where the presentation of the material is developed. In terms of the physical world of this poem, the setting is symbolic. Written in heroic couplets, it is also a prelapsarian, a more perfect world than what we have. The author, Alexander Pope, turned this poem into a mock epic, a form of social poetry, attacking imperialism and mercantilism. Others see it as a sexually liberated, comical poem that makes perfect sense. It is also a mock-heroic satire, yet we do not know if it is juvianalian or horatian because we do not know if Pope actually meant to be hostile or not. We are not sure if we should feel sorry for the young lady and her lock of hair or not. In this paper I shall show how the relationship between form and content are one in the same. One way to understand this is to see that language and content work together to form a mockery of Pope's society. Another way to see this is by Pope's notion of satire and how it is connected to irony. Every satirist wants to expose human folly. Yet Pope does not prove all of this in absolute literary poetic perfection. Everything is scattered which I believe to reveal the chaos in this society. The Rape of the Lock is a very critical piece of poetry in which there are many reasons for.
The reason for Pope's criticism stems from the event in which a man known as the Baron snips off a lock of a young woman's hair, sending her into a hysterical fit. This young woman is named Belinda.