Theme of alienation in Frosts poetry

Question: Discuss the theme of alienation in Robert Frost’s poetry. Theme of alienation in Frosts poetry.


As we know that Robert Frost (1874-1963) is a poet of human psychology, all aspects of human psychology are certainly present in his poems that is why alienation or isolation is one of the prime themes of his poetry.

The key concept of alienation

The word alienation or isolation belongs to human psychology. According to Oxford Learner’s Dictionary, alienation means a feeling that you do not belong in a particular group. It is considered to be a disaster of human life because is related to frustration which destroys a human being like a slow poising. In Frost’s poetry, sundry aspects of isolation are noticed.

Isolation from the immediate environment

The human being’s isolation from the immediate environment is a wider concept presented in Frost’s poetry. The term immediate environment refers to society, nature, sky, stars, God, etc. By the concept of isolation from the immediate environment, the poet means to limn that people are detached from all and even from self-soul and feel pains of ever loneliness. The philosophic vision of the poet about life is that it is man’s fortune or lot to be alienated from all things and beings of the universe and human beings are destine or chosen to live alone. Through this very concept of isolation, Robert frost asserts that feeling isolation is inevitable for us but it should be enjoyed at the level best.

Detachment from society

One of the notable tricks of Frost to handle the theme of isolation is that people are detached from their society. It has been shown in a number of poems. “Mending Wall” is one of such poems in which the poet has expressed this kind of isolation. The main concept of the poem is that the young speaker of the poem is irritated by the idea of his old neighborhood that is:

“Good fences make good neighbors”

If the above short line of the poem is read from a wider and symbolic perspective, it will disclose that man is separated from man, race, nation, or even international separation is hidden in this short line. So, Frost makes it clear before us that human beings’ suffering because of isolation is for themselves not for fortune only.

Alienation from God

The theme of isolation has made Frost a religious one because his opinion about man’s apartness from god is such strong evidence of religious faith that cannot be denied. He thinks that strong reasoning results in separation from God. Unconditional surrender to God is a must to set up a blissful mystic communion with the Omnipotent. The poem “The Road not Taken” is a poem of strong reasoning. It not only expresses the crisis of choice but also the absence of prayer.

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

So, the poet suggests that in crux time people have to be a decision-maker with a prayer so that separation never comes in life.

Some other terms of alienation in Frost’s poetry

“Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” is an epoch-making poem by Frost in which he has shown different types of isolation of the speaker such as apartness from society, God, and himself too.

He will not see me stopping here

To watch his woods fill up with snow.

In the poem “Home Burial”, the poet represents the dreadful separation of women and so on.


From the light of the above discussion, it is our right to declare that Frost is unique because of his managing power of the theme of isolation by which he scatters the message that as long as the world exists, alienation or isolation will remain but it should be imbibed to the lees.

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SR Sarker
SR Sarker
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