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Word Count: 798
Robert Browning is known as the Master of Psychological dramatic monologue In My last Duchess the reader only hears the Dukes story whose perverse point of view throws false accusations towards his recently deceased wife What the reader knows about the characters is limited so he must piece together the story on his own The story the duke thinks he tells of an unfaithful wife who offended his dignity and the story he really tells of jealousy and possessive love that leads to murder engages the reader on a psychological level Many of Brownings main characters are of twisted psyche and in this poem the egomaniacal dukes perception of conflict is severely distorted Long 4 Michael G Millers essay Brownings My Last Duchess discusses how the Duke unknowingly reveals his enormous ego as he describes the painting of his last Duchess The underlying theme is the Dukes dark secret of possessive love obvious jealousy and resentment towards his belated wife Miller argues that looks can be deceiving and what someone says and what they really mean is often not the same Miller points out that the audience is mislead to believe that the Duchess was simple-minded and unfaithful The misrepresentation of the Duchess begins when the duke explains what brought about the spot of joy on the duchesss cheek in Fra Pandolfs portrait The Duke admits t was not Her husbands presence only lines 13-14 caused her to blush This statement is true but its phrasing leads to misunderstanding The Duke tries to make it seem that The presence of men other than her husband caused the blush but that is not the case When he later reveals his wife was easily amused one can clearly see that not her husbands presence only really means The presence of many delightful things brought about the Duchesss blush He allows the reader to take the statement in its negative form according to Miller The negative implications
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