Hope and Despair in Pandemic Poems Selected by Ann Duffy and Manchester University

Document Type : Original Article


1 English Language and Literature Department, Arak Azad University, Iran

2 Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran


Humans around the globe felt a range of different emotions when World Health Organization (WHO) declared the pandemic in 2020. The new normal, lockdown, social distancing, and Covid19 have become the prevalent words in our life. Literature always reflects people's emotions and presents them in literary genres such as novel, drama, and poetry. The present research has explored hope and despair atmosphere in nineteen pandemic poems that responded to Carol Ann Duffy and Manchester Metropolitan University's call for poems on the covid-19 pandemic. The emotions are evaluated and investigated in the poems through words, phrases, imageries, symbols, alliterations, and other figures of speech. The results suggest that the pandemic poems share some features of hope and despair, such as references to death, social isolation, social distancing, and faith. The conclusion represents that hope and despair are the dominant emotions, although despair has a more substantial weight in the observed poems.