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Repetitionand Rhyme Comparisons between Two Poems

Fast Car by Tracy Chapman was produced in 1988 while ThunderRoad by Bruce Springsteen was released in 1975. Notably, bothsongs garnered international acclaim and enhanced the artists`profile. An analysis of the two lyrics shows distinct similaritiesand differences with regards to the use of repetition and rhyme aspoetic techniques.

Chapman’s song manifests distinct occurrences of rhyme within thelyrics. For example, the opening stanza contains the two end words as‘anywhere’ and ‘somewhere’ in an abcb pattern. Rhyme alsooccurs in the use of the words ‘is’ and ‘his.’ Furthermore,the chorus contains the words ‘away’ and ‘way.’ Otherinstances of rhyme occur in the combination of ‘better’ and‘shelter.’ Additionally, ‘car’ and ‘bar’ are used in thetenth stanza. Fast Car also displays repetition of variousphrases. For instance, the lyrics frequently refer to the word‘maybe` to show the uncertainty of achieving the desired action.However, the word also reveals the persona`s bright hope towards thefulfillment of a particular action. The phrase ‘you got a fast car`is also frequently cited to show the intended target’s capacity forchange. Furthermore, the chorus is repeated to emphasize thepersona’s message. The lyrics contain consecutive phrases that showhow the old man perceives ‘his body.’ Other instances ofrepetition include the use of the words ‘driving’ and ‘someone’(Chapman). In fact, the lyrics comprise a line that repeats thelatter word three times in quick succession. Such techniques are usedto create a rhythm within the song.

Thunder Road features several instances of rhyme andrepetition. The words ‘lonely’ and ‘only’ are used inconsecutive sentences. The first stanza also contains instances ofrhyme such as ‘for,’ ‘anymore,’ ‘night,’ and ‘right.’Besides, the words ‘lovers’ and covers’ are mentioned inproximity to ‘rain’ and ‘vain.’ Other examples of rhyme occurin the words ‘understood,’ ‘hood,’ ‘somehow,’ ‘now,’‘hand,` and ‘land,` ‘sun,’ ‘run,’ ‘hold,’ ‘road,’‘talk,’ ‘walk,’ ‘broken,’ ‘spoken,’ ‘street,’ and‘feet.’ Moreover, the lyrics contain repetition of the words ‘OhThunder Road’ to emphasize the persona’s message (Springsteen).The word ‘again’ is mentioned twice as a manifestation of thespeaker’s exasperation. The phrase ‘all right’ is repeated toshow the persona’s optimism in the future.

Fast Car and Thunder Road are quite different in theiruse of rhyme and repetition. In particular, Springsteen’s song hasmore instances of rhyme than Chapman’s track. Additionally, ThunderRoad mostly contains rhyme in consecutive lines while Fast Caruses alternating sentences. Besides, Chapman’s song includes moreinstances of repetition compared to Springsteen’s track.Notwithstanding, some striking similarities exist between the twolyrics. For example, both songs have a chorus that is repeated aftereach stanza. Also, both lyrics utilize such poetic techniques tocreate rhythm. The personas in both songs use repetition to enhancethematic purposes. Furthermore, both lyrics also have irregularrhyming patterns in several stanzas.

Indeed, an analysis of the two songs reveals distinct similaritiesand differences with regards to rhyme and repetition. Fast Carcontains some rhyming words in alternating sentences while ThunderRoad mostly uses consecutive lines. However, the former song hasfewer instances of rhyme compared to the latter`s lyrics. Chapman`ssong has many instances of repetition while Springsteen`s track hasmore infrequent occurrences. Therefore, Fast Car and Thunder Rod canbe used to show the similarities and differences between variouspoetic techniques.


Chapman, Tracy. “Fast Car.” Tracy Chapman. ElektraRecords, 1988. A-Z n.d. Web. 2 Nov. 2015. &lt

Springsteen, Bruce. “Thunder Road.” Born to Run. Columbia,1975. Bruce n.d. Web. 2 Nov. 2015.&lt

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Hammurabi’sCode of Laws

Hammurabi’s Code refers to a collection of “Babylonian laws”devised by the eponymous king. Notably, the laws were inscribed on astone monument and were “discovered in 1901” (Johns). Hammurabidesired to effect “righteousness” in Babylon by destroying the“evil-doers” (Johns). The king was also intent on ensuring the“wellbeing” of his subjects (Johns). Nevertheless, there are somestriking similarities and glaring differences between the Hammurabi’scode and modern laws.

Similaritiesbetween Babylonian and Modern Laws

Both legal structures seek to provide justice to the less fortunatein society. For example, Hammurabi’s code protected the rights ofslaves and minors. For example, “if anyone finds runaway male orfemale slaves in the open country and bring them to their masters,the master of the slaves shall pay him two shekels of silver”(Johns). Similarly, the modern legal system has establishedguidelines against slavery and exploitation of children. Both lawcodes demand the payment of damages whenever false testimony wasprovided. Such a command was laid down to safeguard the legal systemfrom disrepute. Furthermore, both legal systems honor the sanctity ofmarriage. For example, Hammurabi’s code stated that “if a manwishes to separate from his wife who has borne him no children, heshall give her the amount of her purchase money and the dowry whichshe brought from her father`s house, and let her go” (Johns).Modern laws also stipulate the completion of divorce proceedingsbefore an individual is free to remarry. In addition, both law codesprovide guidelines designed to safeguard property from theft. Forinstance, Hammurabi’s code stated that “if anyone steal theproperty of a temple or of the court, he shall be put to death, andalso the one who receives the stolen thing from him shall be put todeath” (Johns). Modern laws also have particular guidelines againsttheft and vandalism. Therefore, people can protect their belongingsfrom unlawful seizure.

Moreover, Hammurabi’s code and modern laws stipulate varyingpenalties for different crimes. For example, Babylonian decreesstated that “if he satisfies the elders to impose a fine of grainor money, he shall receive the fine that the action produces” while“if anyone steal the property of a temple or of the court, he shallbe put to death, and also the one who receives the stolen thing fromhim shall be put to death” (Johns). Modern laws also issuedifferent types of penalties based on the severity of the crime.Harsher fines and longer sentences may be imposed for recurringoffenses. The laws embraced by both systems also show somesimilarities between the modern society and the Mesopotamian culture.For example, Hammurabi’s code portrayed the significance of thefamily arrangement. Similarly, modern laws provide fundamentalguidelines for the protection of women and children (Carpenter 3).The code also shows the emphasis that both societies placed oncommercial activities. In this regard, many laws have been drafted toregulate business dealings and prevent fraudulent practices.

Differencesbetween Babylonian and Modern Laws

Hammurabi’s code was biased in that it offered preferentialtreatment to affluent people. For example, “if a man puts out theeye of another man, his eye shall be put out” (Johns).Contrariwise, “if he puts out the eye of a freed man, or breaks thebone of a freed man, he shall pay one gold mina” (Johns). Hence,people were treated on the basis of their social status. On the otherhand, modern laws are not guided by discriminatory standards andpractices. In this respect, people from different social classesadhere to similar statutes. Therefore, the modern legal systemensures fairness and equality in humans.

Furthermore, Hammurabi’s code stipulated harsh and unreasonablepunishments. For example, “if anyone bring an accusation of anycrime before the elders, and does not prove what he has charged, heshall, if it be a capital offense charged, be put to death”(Johns). Also, “if anyone steal the property of a temple or of thecourt, he shall be put to death, and also the one who receives thestolen thing from him shall be put to death” (Johns). Some cases oftheft were also made subject to capital punishment. However, modernlaws are lenient such that they consider the circumstances ofsuspected offenders. In fact, guilty murderers could still argue formanslaughter and receive prison sentences rather than suffer capitalpunishment (Doyle and Scott 300). Additionally, convicted thieves arenever subject to death notwithstanding the extent of treachery. Falseaccusers also face the likelihood of countersuits rather than capitalpunishment.

Besides, Hammurabi’s code had archaic methods of proving innocence.For instance, the Euphrates River was used as the ultimate measure ofguilt. In this regard, “if anyone bring an accusation against aman, and the accused go to the river and leap into the river, if hesink in the river his accuser shall take possession of his house. Butif the river prove that the accused is not guilty, and he escapeunhurt, then he who had brought the accusation shall be put to death,while he who leaped into the river shall take possession of the housethat had belonged to his accuser” (Johns). Conversely, modern lawsdeploy scientific methods to ascertain a person’s innocence. Infact, DNA evidence is mostly used in cases where witnesses may benonexistent. Moreover, a person must be proven guilty beyond areasonable doubt before a sentence is issued (Glöckner and Engel233). Subsequently, appeals to higher courts are allowed.Incarcerated individuals also become eligible for parole afterserving a certain portion of their sentence.

The statutes of Hammurabi’s code manifest the differences betweenthe Mesopotamian society and modern culture. For example, theBabylonians did not value equality as shown by the differentclassification of nobles, commoners, and “slaves” (Johns). On theother hand, the modern society has ingrained provisions that upholdeach person’s dignity. Furthermore, the Mesopotamian cultureconsidered children as the property of parents. In particular, “ifhe is guilty of a grave fault, which should rightfully deprive him ofthe filial relationship, the father shall forgive him the first timebut if he be guilty of a grave fault a second time the father maydeprive his son of all filial relation” (Johns). Nevertheless,modern society allows persons beyond a certain age to becomeemancipated from their guardians. Negligent parents can also bedenied access to their children (Chaffin et al. 510). Therefore, themodern culture places greater expectations on parents to fulfilltheir roles.


Indeed, there are several similarities and differences betweenHammurabi’s code and the current legal structure. Both systems wereestablished to ensure justice for the less fortunate members of thesociety. Also, they uphold the sanctity of marriage while stipulatingvarying punishments for different crimes. Nevertheless, Hammurabi’scode established discriminatory penalties based on social class.Babylonian laws also inflicted harsh punishments on perpetrators.Consequently, the Mesopotamian society fostered retributive justicewhile the modern culture enforces equality.

Work Cited

Carpenter, R. Charli. `Innocent Women and Children`: Gender, Normsand the Protection of Civilians. New York: Routledge, 2016.Print.

Chaffin, Mark, et al. &quotA statewide trial of the SafeCarehome-based services model with parents in Child Protective Services.&quotPediatrics 129.3 (2012): 509-515.

Doyle, David M., and Suzanne Scott. &quotCriminal Liability forDeaths in Prison Custody: The Corporate Manslaughter and CorporateHomicide Act 2007.&quot The Howard Journal of Crime and Justice55.3 (2016): 295-311.

Glöckner, Andreas, and Christoph Engel. &quotCan We Trust IntuitiveJurors? Standards of Proof and the Probative Value of Evidence inCoherence‐Based Reasoning.&quotJournal of Empirical Legal Studies 10.2 (2013): 230-252.

Johns, C.H. W. &quotHammurabi’s Code of Laws.&quot 1903.Web. 2 Oct. 2016.