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Portrait in Georgia

Portrait in Georgia


by Jean Toomer

Portrait in Georgia Questions

Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.

  1. Of what or whom is "Portrait in Georgia" a portrait? Why do you think Toomer chose to call this poem a portrait?
  2. Who is painting the portrait? What is our speaker like? Can we learn anything about them from the poem?
  3. What is the gender of the victim in this poem? How do you know? Is gender important?
  4. Why is this portrait in Georgia, rather than any other state in the United States? 
  5. What effect do dashes have in this poem? Why do you think our speaker uses them?
  6. What are the sentences like in this poem? Are they all the same? Do they change? Are they complete (do they have verbs, adjectives, adverbs, subjects, etc.)?
  7. Why does the speaker begin by noticing the hair, followed by the eyes, lips, breath, and body? What, if anything, is significant about this order?
  8. Which of the five senses does our speaker use?
  9. Why do you think this poem is so short?

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