Birthday Letters Glossary

Birthday Letters Glossary

Sylvia Plath

An American poet, novelist and short story writer, best known for her novel 'The Bell Jar' and her collection of poetry entitled 'Ariel'. She was married to Ted Hughes from 1956 until their separation in 1962. Their relationship forms the basis of 'Birthday Letters'.


When a writer returns to a work to make changes or alterations. In regards to the poems in 'Birthday Letters', Hughes wrote several drafts and made a number of alterations to them.


An indirect or passing reference to something or somebody. In 'Birthday Letters', Hughes mentions Sylvia Plath by name in only one poem, even though the entire collection is about his relationship with her.


The style and arrangement of an artistic work.

Narrative voice

The person, in a work of literature, who is describing or recounting an event or a scene. For example, first-person narrative voice is indicated by 'I' e.g. I saw, I heard.

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