A detailed analysis of the background, themes, structure, line length, and use of repetition and free verse in Sandburg’s most famous poem, “Chicago.” Also a major section of the student handout focuses on an activity on the similarities and differences of comparison, simile, metaphor, and personification in poetry. After definitions and examples of these poetic devices, your students will locate them and explain their importance in “Chicago.”
The three-page student handout section, which has blanks which your students can fill in, is suitable as an in-class activity or for homework. A two-page Answer Key, which contains additional commentary on the poem and on Sandburg not covered in the student handout, is provided on separate sheets at the end of the handout. You may wish to incorporate some of these points into your class’s discussion of “Chicago.”
Prepared by Professor William Tarvin, Ph.D., who has published many articles on literature in scholarly journals.