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2010

Summary "Rebel" by D.J. Enright


The Rebel is a lightly expressed poem written in a casual style free of any bitterness or critcism. The poet shows the charater of rebel. One who does not conform to the norms of society and has a contradictory attitude based on self-assertion. This is not typically a political rebel who wants a revolution in the country; but this is a common adolecent boy who, for his inexperience, exhibits himself so as to draw attention.

The poet lists various contradictory activities of the rebel. He says that when every body has short hair, the rebel grows his hair long and when long hair is in, the rebel cuts his hair short. He stays silent in the lesson when every one is discussing a matter; but when it is time for general discussion, the rebel remains attentive to the teacher and does not participate in the discussion. When people wear uniforms, he puts on showy dresses and when people wear colorful dresses, he does the opposite. In the company of cat lovers, he prefers dogs and in the company of dogs, he prefers the otherwise. When it is the general desire for rain, he necessitates the importance of sun and when people want the sunbath, he goes for rain. When others attend meetings, he stays home and when others stay home, he attends meetings. He says Yes when he should say No ; but says No when he should say Yes. In short, each action of the rebel is stimulated by self-exhibition and inexperienced attitude of adolescence. The poet has remarkably described the non-conformist behavior of the rebel in a light, funny, and casual manner. The poet says that the individual freedom is very important and we must learn to accept it in society. No two persons can be equal. The poet also says that such people in society do exist but we must have a soft corner for them; but we should try to be one.

"The Rebel" by By D.J. Enright (Reference to the Context)


Reference: These lines have been taken from the poem The Rebel written by D.J. Enright. Context: This poem deals with the attitude of a social rebel. Actually a rebellion is a manner to look different from others. Such a social rebel is neither dangerous

nor vicious. He does not make the other peoples lives miserable. He just wants to look different. Young dissatisfied people may behave like this. But the society should not have social rebels. Lines 1 2 Explanation: In these lines the poet expresses the attitude of a social rebel. When every body keeps short and uniform hair, the rebel knowingly grows his hair long. This, he does for the fact that he wants to look different from others. Lines 3 4 In these lines the poet says that the rebel goes against the custom and tradition of the society. When the rest of the society grows long hair, the rebel cuts his hair short. This he does just to have a difference from others. Lines 5 6 In these lines the poet expresses the thought when every member of the society talks during a lesion or meeting, the rebel keeps silent because he wants to be prominent. Lines 7 8 In these lines the poet says when no-body talks during the lesion or meeting, the rebel creates disturbance by talking loudly just to look distinct. Lines 9 10 These lines show a different position of a rebel. When every person of the society wears simple and uniform clothes, the rebel uses strange and odd clothes. He wants to look distinguished from others. Lines 11 12 In these lines the poet says when all other members of the society use queer and strange clothes, the rebel dresses himself very seriously and soberly. Lines 13 14 In these lines the poet expresses his idea of a rebel. If some people love dogs as pet animals, the rebel talks about the usefulness of cats. He prefers cats to dogs. Lines 15 16 If a rebel is in company of those people who love cats, he prefers dogs to cats. He wants to look different at all costs. Lines 17 18 The poet says if people require the sunlight and praise the sun the rebel is against them. He says that the sun is not required and there is need for rain. Lines 19 20

When everybody of the society welcomes and requires rain, the rebel says something about the sun. He feels sorry for the absence of the sun. according to him, there is need for the sunlight. Lines 21 22 When every members of the society goes to some gathering and attends the meeting, the rebel stays at home and keeps himself busy by reading a book indoors. Lines 23 24 When everybody of the society stays at home and reads a book, the rebel tries to find some crowd of the people and wants to attend to them. Lines 25 26 When every person asks for something, the rebel rejects the same with thanks. Because he is a person quite different from others. Lines 27 28 When everybody of the society does not like and does not receive anything and says thanks, for that, the rebel, on purpose, requires that thing and asks for it. Lines 29 30 In these lines the poet concludes that it is very good that we have social rebels in the society. But naturally, it is not good to become a social rebel. The poet further suggests that if we already have the social rebels, we should tolerate them. Without them life will become monotonous and dull.
In this simple but humorous and satirical poem, D.J. Enright has drawn the picture of a rebel. The poem shows poet's knowledge of human nature and attitude of rebels. They always act against popular opinion and common behaviour. Their actions are motivated by a strong urge to look different from others. Egotistic behaviour is usually rooted in a scene of inferiority or insecurity. In this poem the poet has exposed the behaviour and attitude of young persons in an ironic manner. The poet says that when common persons have short hair, the rebel has long hair. If common people have long hair, the rebel likes to have short hair. When all talk in the class room, he keeps quite and when others keep quiet, he causes disturbance. When every body else is dressed in uniform, the rebel puts on fantastic clothes. When others wear beautiful dress, he puts on uniform. The poet further says that a rebel always expresses different from others. He loves dogs when others love cats and when others are lover of dogs, he shows his affection for cats. He wishes for rain when every body likes sun and when every body likes to have rain, he longs for sunshine. The poet says that rebels have their own value in society. They provide a spice of variety in our dull and monotonous life. This poem is an interesting and harmless criticism on the behaviour of young rebellious persons. The ambitions and whims of youth have been beautifully expressed in the simple and undecorated

languages of this poem. The poet successfully persuades us to develop tolerant for rebels and put up with their odd behavior

Through the character of rebel the poet wants to emphasize the importance of individual liberty. Their eccentric behaviour has psychological reasons. They suffer from inferiority complex due to being the victim of neglect, and try to attract attention and appraisal of other people. The rebels are serious and solemn in themselves but they look funny and non-serous to us.

The rebel has different views, habits and manners, he is different from other people in every matter. Such a young man is called rebel by the poet. The rebel tries to assert/show his individuality everywhere. He is completely different from other people.