Anne Bradstreet. Study Questions

Anne Bradstreet.
"The Flesh and the Spirit"
  1. The Puritans believed that the world is a battlefiled between the forces of good and the forces of darkness, which in this poem are represented by the "two sisters", the Flesh and the Spirit.
  2. What are some of the main differences between these two forces, according to the poet?
  3. Read the quotation by Flesh carefully. In her questioning of Spirit she questions the Puritan purpose in life. What are her objections?
  4. What does Flesh offer to Spirit instead?
  5. Read Spirit's reply carefully.
  6. What is Spirit's attitude to her "sister" Flesh?
  7. Explain the meaning of these lines:
    Sister we are, yea twins we be,
    Yet deadly feud 'twixt thee and me,
    For from one father are we not.
  8. The point here is that good and evil is not only out there in the world, but in each one of us as well. How showl we deal with it, according to Spirit?
  9. Who is each one's "father"?
  10. Describe in your own words how Spirit sees her relationship with Flesh. What is her attitude toward all that Flesh offers her?
  11. Flesh offers earthly paradise, while Spirit offers Heavenly paradise. How does Spirit descibe the place where she will go?
"To my Dear and Loving Husband"
    This poem is in no way a "romantic" poem. It expresses the Puritan view of "pure" love, if you will. What is the lover's wish?
"On My Dear Grandchild Simon Bradstreet, Who Died on 16 November, 1669, Being But a Month, and, One Day Old"
    Line four to the end express the Puritan view of death. Explain it in your own words.