Topic : The Rival

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The Rival is a notable literary work by Sylvia Plath. A complete discussion of this literary work is given, which will help you enhance your literary skills and prepare for the exam. Read the main text, key info, Summary, Themes, Characters, Literary Devices, Quotations, Notes, to various questions of The Rival.

main text

The Rival By Sylvia Plath (1932 – 1963) If the moon smiled, she would resemble you. You leave the same impression Of something beautiful, but annihilating. Both of you are great light borrowers. Her O-mouth grieves at the world; yours is unaffected, And your first gift is making stone out of everything. I wake to a mausoleum; you are here, Ticking your fingers on the marble table, looking for cigarettes, Spiteful as a woman, but not so nervous, And dying to say something unanswerable. The moon, too, abuses her subjects, But in the daytime she is ridiculous. Your dissatisfactions, on [...]


"The Rival" by Sylvia Plath (1932 – 1963) is a poem about jealousy and competition between two women. The poem tells the story of a speaker jealous of another woman. Her rival has everything the speaker desires with all her heart. The rival woman is beautiful, confident, and perfect in every way. On the other hand, the speaker is insecure and unhappy with her own life.

Qualities of the Speaker’s Rival: The speaker clearly describes the qualities of her rival, such as her physical beauty and how she effortlessly attracts attention. The speaker suffers from jealousy and cannot appreciate the positive aspects of her own life. The poem's speaker is so jealous that she cannot bear to be around another woman. She tries to avoid her, but she sees a rival woman everywhere. She can't avoid her.