W h auden: poems study guide contains a biography of wystan hugh auden, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, character analysis, and a full summary and analysis on select poems about w h auden: poems. Other works, such as poet w h auden’s “the unknown citizen,” are less dramatic but no less telling about the path of the twentieth century, particularly after the introduction of computer. W h auden's the unknown citizen portrays a pathetic character whose life has been stifled by the state, yet who, ironically, does not seem to realize his lot in life.
Auden reading his poem, the unknown citizen commentary this widely anthologized poem portrays a pathetic character whose life has been stifled by the state, yet who, ironically, does not seem to realize his lot in life. The unknown citizen by w h auden home / poetry / the unknown citizen / the unknown citizen summary back next we learn that the words we are about to read are written on a statue or monument dedicated to the unknown citizen the poem consists of several different kinds of people and organizations weighing in on the character of our.
The tone of the poem is impersonal and clinical, the speaker more than likely a suited bureaucrat expressing the detached view of the state the unknown citizen is reduced to a mere number, a series of letters there is no name, no birthplace or mention of loved ones. The poem consists of several different kinds of people and organizations weighing in on the character of our dear citizen first, the not-so-friendly-sounding bureau of statistics says that no official complaint was ever made against him.
W h auden served as a c hancellor of the academy of american poets from 1954 to 1973, and divided most of the second half of his life between residences in new york city and austria he died in vienna on september 29, 1973. Explain the main theme of the poem the unknown citizen by w h auden the main idea i suppose is that non-commital people deserve the insignificance of their lives.
Summary of the poem the unknown citizen by wh auden is a satiric poem it describes an average citizen in a government-controlled state in many big cities, there is a monument to the unknown soldier that stands for the thousands of unknown soldiers who die for their country the title of auden’s poem parodies this. The unknown citizen by wh auden the poem “the unknown citizen” by wh auden is a satire its narrator is the state in this, the state pays tribute and describes a successful and positive product of its efficiency and effectiveness. The unknown citizen by w h auden (to js/07 m 378 this marble monument is erected by the state) he was found by the bureau of statistics to be one against whom there was no official complaint, and all the reports on his conduct agree that, in the modern sense of an old-fashioned word, he was a saint. The unknown citizen by wh auden: summary and analysis the unknown citizen, first published in the listener on august 1939, and later included in the collected shorter poems, 1950, is a satire, not on the citizen, but on the way in which the average man in the street is controlled by the conventions of bureaucracy and the welfare state which ignore the need for a man to be free and happy.
The poem starts by informing us that this unknown citizen was exemplary, in that “no official complaint” was ever made against him, that he was a “saint” for serving the “greater community”, being a soldier, and never getting fired from his factory job. “the unknown citizen,” a poem written by wh auden, alludes to a time of great change in american history, where the poem is meant to mock the government’s viewpoint of the perfect role model for an unrealistic, impractical citizen.