Has anyone got any info on Ruth Padel's Builders?

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Sashii.Ni
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Builders is a poem by Ruth Padel (that poet who was involved in the smear email scandal over the poetry professorship at Oxford) and I have to study it for my exam... unfortunately I can't find anything on the poem online If anyone has any info on the poem or can help me with understanding the form, structure, language etc of the poem, I'd really appreciate it! :yep:

My exam's next week, please help me asap! :eek3:
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anoushka1
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Hey
Just some points that I would write

Form and Structure: some internal rhyme 'leave' 'Steve'
poem's form looks like building blocks reflecting content of poem

Language:
- 'I' and 'they' clear class distinction- the builders talk of the homes they may inhabit one day
- idea of cyclical creation
- use of triples gives a rye tone to the poem
- creation and never seeing the end product 'sit in my dusty futures'
- 'Collin, Rodney, Steve' naming adds sense of authenticity
- listing adds a humorous tone 'danger to marriage, dogs...' as there is a mix of the prosaic and the serious
'assurance and tough hands' idea of hard, physically demanding labour - connotations of masculinity

I find this poem really hard to write about and hopefully I won't have to on Tuesday

Hope all goes well for you
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Sashii.Ni
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(Original post by anoushka1)
Hey
Just some points that I would write

Form and Structure: some internal rhyme 'leave' 'Steve'
poem's form looks like building blocks reflecting content of poem

Language:
- 'I' and 'they' clear class distinction- the builders talk of the homes they may inhabit one day
- idea of cyclical creation
- use of triples gives a rye tone to the poem
- creation and never seeing the end product 'sit in my dusty futures'
- 'Collin, Rodney, Steve' naming adds sense of authenticity
- listing adds a humorous tone 'danger to marriage, dogs...' as there is a mix of the prosaic and the serious
'assurance and tough hands' idea of hard, physically demanding labour - connotations of masculinity

I find this poem really hard to write about and hopefully I won't have to on Tuesday

Hope all goes well for you
Hey

Thanks so much I didn't have some of those points in my notes and of course, different people see different meanings in poems... the different perspectives will help too, e.g: 'dusty futures'- my teacher told me that it means that her life keeps changing but the builder is one fixed thing.

I've got some more notes on Builders, if you want them?
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anoushka1
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(Original post by Sashii.Ni)
Hey

Thanks so much I didn't have some of those points in my notes and of course, different people see different meanings in poems... the different perspectives will help too, e.g: 'dusty futures'- my teacher told me that it means that her life keeps changing but the builder is one fixed thing.

I've got some more notes on Builders, if you want them?
yes please!!! just quote me and post it on the thread

thanks
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Sashii.Ni
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(Original post by anoushka1)
yes please!!! just quote me and post it on the thread

thanks
Well... this is it... I hate the poem too BTW ._. I hate this and Money. And I'm not too good with Hay-making =| I need to study so much... you are doing Andrew Motion's anthology, aren't you?


  • 'Builders' -> the title is ironic because they are BREAKERS (homebreakers).
  • The narrator doesn't fit the norm. She doesn't represent the conventional woman and she doesn't cater to society's expectations.
  • Structure - can represent either a staircase or the way bricks are placed.
  • not solid
  • uneven edge of a building
  • lack of consistency of the building (symbol- lack of consistency in her life)
  • The poem has a strong, narrative voice because of the way the builders have made her feel. They're not even a permanent feature of her life (they keep moving on).
  • 'Cycles' - continuous cycle
  • 'In houses I inhabit, paint and leave' - different phases in her life -> yet again, it represents a cycle.
  • 'Dusty futures' - her life keeps changing (lack of consistency) but the builders are the one fixed and definite feature in her life.
  • 'Colin, Rodney, Steve' - not really aristocratic names.
  • 'Talking of homes they'll build for themselves one day' - they produce things but they can't produce things for themselves.
  • 'Ruthless' - energy projected by them.
  • 'Gassed the house' - sense of taking over.
  • 'But I like the way they change how you see so casually and for ever' - she likes temporary and casual relationships -> goes against the conventional belief.
  • 'Sockets, skirting-boards and living-space' - Sibilance. It is also suggestive- to the builders, those things are what they are but to her it's about sex (BTW my teacher said something about the narrator being a nymphomaniac).
  • 'With assurance and tough hands' - masculinity -> strength + attractiveness.
  • 'Then they move on' - move on to another woman.


They're like a paradox - they build houses and ruin homes.
But it's important to remember that it takes two to tango, thus the builders can not be fully blamed for having affairs with the narrator. She wants them- she has an obsession with them. The average upper class woman would barely have ties with the builders of their house but this woman breaks all conventions by daring to go beyond even the first step; socialising with the working class.
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anoushka1
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(Original post by Sashii.Ni)
Well... this is it... I hate the poem too BTW ._. I hate this and Money. And I'm not too good with Hay-making =| I need to study so much... you are doing Andrew Motion's anthology, aren't you?


  • 'Builders' -> the title is ironic because they are BREAKERS (homebreakers).
  • The narrator doesn't fit the norm. She doesn't represent the conventional woman and she doesn't cater to society's expectations.
  • Structure - can represent either a staircase or the way bricks are placed.
  • not solid
  • uneven edge of a building
  • lack of consistency of the building (symbol- lack of consistency in her life)
  • The poem has a strong, narrative voice because of the way the builders have made her feel. They're not even a permanent feature of her life (they keep moving on).
  • 'Cycles' - continuous cycle
  • 'In houses I inhabit, paint and leave' - different phases in her life -> yet again, it represents a cycle.
  • 'Dusty futures' - her life keeps changing (lack of consistency) but the builders are the one fixed and definite feature in her life.
  • 'Colin, Rodney, Steve' - not really aristocratic names.
  • 'Talking of homes they'll build for themselves one day' - they produce things but they can't produce things for themselves.
  • 'Ruthless' - energy projected by them.
  • 'Gassed the house' - sense of taking over.
  • 'But I like the way they change how you see so casually and for ever' - she likes temporary and casual relationships -> goes against the conventional belief.
  • 'Sockets, skirting-boards and living-space' - Sibilance. It is also suggestive- to the builders, those things are what they are but to her it's about sex (BTW my teacher said something about the narrator being a nymphomaniac).
  • 'With assurance and tough hands' - masculinity -> strength + attractiveness.
  • 'Then they move on' - move on to another woman.


They're like a paradox - they build houses and ruin homes.
But it's important to remember that it takes two to tango, thus the builders can not be fully blamed for having affairs with the narrator. She wants them- she has an obsession with them. The average upper class woman would barely have ties with the builders of their house but this woman breaks all conventions by daring to go beyond even the first step; socialising with the working class.
Thank you so much.....my teachers never said anything about the sexual side of this and the woman's affairs.

Yep, I am doing Andrew Motions poetry it is possibly the most boring collection ever lol. What else are you studying? I am doing the yellow wallpaper and pride and prejudice
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Sashii.Ni
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#7
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(Original post by anoushka1)
Thank you so much.....my teachers never said anything about the sexual side of this and the woman's affairs.

Yep, I am doing Andrew Motions poetry it is possibly the most boring collection ever lol. What else are you studying? I am doing the yellow wallpaper and pride and prejudice
You're welcome Are you serious? :zomg: Well, they did tell you about Hay-making, right? That one's more obvious than Builders though... And Money omg! :lolwut:

I know... it's so so dull The Bricklayer's Lunch Hour. SOOO DRAB! I'm doing Wuthering Heights and The Color Purple. WH is like the most complicated novel EVER :erm:
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Megan Melrose
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(Original post by Sashii.Ni)
You're welcome Are you serious? :zomg: Well, they did tell you about Hay-making, right? That one's more obvious than Builders though... And Money omg! :lolwut:

I know... it's so so dull The Bricklayer's Lunch Hour. SOOO DRAB! I'm doing Wuthering Heights and The Color Purple. WH is like the most complicated novel EVER :erm:
HEY. can i have your notes on hay-making? your notes for builders were really helpful- my teacher never mentioned anything sexual about it either :/ i felt like a complete idiot when u said all that oh dear haha. thanx
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PinkTink
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Anyone know what the form of the poem is? Dramatic monologue, lymerick etc...?
Thanks!
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