For this week’s forum, I was given The Passionate Shepherd to His Love by Christopher Marlowe. It is story of a love stricken shepherd who is trying to get his love to live with him. He does this by describing how life would be and what type of things they could do.


And we will all the pleasures prove,

That Valleys, groves, hills, and fields,

Woods, or steepy mountain yields.<w:sdt> (Marlowe, 1599)


And later in the poem he says


And we will sit upon the Rocks,

Seeing the Shepherds feed their flocks<w:sdt> (Marlowe, 1599)


For the poem, the two critical approaches I chose to talk about are reader-response and deconstruction. Reader-response works well because it is written from the point of view of someone in love, making it easy for those in love to join the reader in his story. IT gives them a specific scenario to put themselves in with their own love interest. It may even bring up emotions and feelings for someone you didnt know you felt that way for. Deconstruction fits because a lot of poems seem to have underlying meanings tied to the language, or the story, but this one is pretty straight forward and cannot really be dissected and turned into something else.


The critical approach I think fits the best is reader-response. Intended or not, the poem can easily bring up emotions and love. It can cause you to long for a life with that one true love. It gets you thinking about what you could be doing with that person, even if it is not watching shepherds tend their flocks.




Marlowe, C. (1599). The Passionate Shepherd to His Love. Canterbury.