The Unknown Citizen

In: English and Literature

Submitted By ZhangZewei
Words 828
Pages 4
English 1020
Zhang zewei
B00637895

The Unknown Citizen Analysis “The Unknown Citizen”, was written by W. H Auden during the 1920s and 30s, he reflected the major social issue of regulation was people facing in that era by using unknown citizen as a narrator with his own unique way. This poem criticizes regulation and normality, replacing individualism and liberalism. Frist of all, the title of this poem “The Unknown Citizen” indicates that a normal person will lose their individuality. With strong vocabulary and language the poem builds an overall atmosphere, which punctuates author’s points. Ironically, at the end of the poem there are two important questions “Was he free? Was he happy?” these questions add depth and meaning to this poem. In this poem the voice of a fictional government bureaucrat who sat in the office and shuffled documents every day, whose decisions would impact peoples’ lives; we do not know who he is. The clue of the information about this person derived from “Bureau of Statistics”, it tries to show the readers that everyone is typical and normal; therefore people will no longer be individual people. He is an unknown citizen because he just a typical person. More and more advanced technology showed up in this modern world as if humanity is beginning to fade away. It seems like human are increasingly becoming unknown citizens. The man in this poem is someone who lost his individually, and lost the concept of happiness, freedom, hope, dream, love as well as feeling become humble and a trivial matter. He lived on his dull office job until he retired. He made himself become a working machine and he has never done anything out of his daily routine. He lived in a world of ideal have been planned and became a mental slavery of the government. Auden believed that the human’s individualism was being eroded and the human’s…...

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