Sunday, August 18, 2013
1987 AP Exam Prompt #1
"Categorized free time"
In the selection George Eliot’s conception of old leisure is exactly that, things that were once done and are long. Eliot begins her work of literature by helping the reader visualize how far old leisure is. Old leisure in her eyes is a passive action, nothing compared to the eagerness and rush of today’s Leisure. Eliot uses the devices of personification and hyperbole to get across her message of old leisure.
In the selection leisure is given a persona/character. Old leisure goes from and it to a he. He has the characteristics of a gentle human being. As described he (old leisure) enjoyed things that the new could not understand. He liked the scent of apricots, liked reading newspaper and being a gentlemen. This was the old and peaceful leisure. Old leisure is now gone like packhorses and slow waggons and pedlars. New leisure is a total rush, wreck less and nothing like the old leisure.
Not only does Eliot convey her views through personification, but also through hyperbole. The whole selection is a hyperbole. The exaggeration made about old leisure and how it is a rush is absurd. The fact that Eliot gave free time a character and categorized it is what makes it a hyperbole.
Eliot’s selection conveyed her opinion and experience with old leisure using the devices of hyperbole and personification. Personification because of the leisure’s character and hyperbole because of the big deal that was made about leisure itself.