Sylvia Plath reads “The Applicant”


One of my favorite poems read by the poet herself, the late great Sylvia Plath! Enjoy! more to come! -Drew

25 thoughts on “Sylvia Plath reads “The Applicant”

  1. It’s a sarcastic view on marriage. The living doll being the wife and the person being interviewed the husband.
    25 years silver, 50 gold= anniversaries.
    It makes more sense if you read it while listening.

  2. This is a feminist poem in that it’s about women and their roles in society as wives. “to bring teacups and roll away headaches” this is a maternal stereotype. The repetition of “will you marry it?” she compares women to dolls “a living doll, everywhere you look. It can sew, it can cook, it can talk, talk, talk,” also the part “You have a hole, it’s a poultice. you have an eye, it’s an image.”

  3. So much knowing, self-knowing, compressed into so few years must combust.

  4. I absolutely love Sylvia Plath! And this is, by far, my favorite piece of her work. I’m compelled to use it as a monologue whenever I audition. It’s just that great

  5. It’s kinda of like someone applying for, say a date. You have to look perfect on your first date and you have to conduct yourself a certain way. This piece shows that a job isn’t the only thing you DO apply for, but instead, it explains that we MUST uphold society’s expectations. That’s just my interpretation.

  6. Sylvia is an unusual to me, but her poems are absolute genius. I fell sorry for her and all that has happened in her very short life.

  7. ONE OF MY ALLTIME FAVORITES….i’d say this is in my top 5 of all Plath’s work and that’s saying something because i LOVE her work so much. i love that “thumb shut”….and “how about this suit?”…..does anyone else find themselves freakishly thinking of this poem when they look for a job? god her voice is perfection…..”a living doll everywhere you look”…it’s SO biting and haunting….it’s perfection, people. PERFECTION…..

  8. Some people are able to share their depression with the world via their literary talent, and perhaps thus lessen their own psychological burden – other, less talented individuals have to suffer it alone. Whilst appreciating the literary quality of her work, I still find Sylvia Plath depressing 🙁

  9. i always remembered this poem.

    head in an oven, never knew, i knew

    she commited suicide. angels with now

  10. You are welcome and allow me to recognize you for providing this cultural treasure. I have not before heard Plath read and this also lead me to listening to some Ted Hughes whom I also have not heard his voice. It was very different than I expected. His poetry is hugely heavy, monstrous, however Hughe’s voice is moderate but his pronunciation is crisp, specific. Thank you for the cultural enrichment. When Ginsberg and then Hughes passed, I was the only person who noticed it seemed. Bravo to you

  11. It is similar to video editing software. Once you have your track recorded, you do not “save” like a word processor file, you must “export” the file and this does the conversion to your desired file format. Pretty dry and unpoetic, but that is how it works.

  12. After you record the file into Audacity and trim the ends a little, you will need to “export” the file to one of two formats. If you use the .wav format, it does it. If you want to use .mp3, you have to download the converter thing, a tiny file, dll or somesuch. Do a Google seach for “Audacity export mp3.” But I think of the two, .wav sounds a little better. Audacity is a very high quality program, widely used. select the input on the main page, adjust input level, you are ready to go. Good luck

  13. Download the free audio recording software “Audacity.” Take the sound ouputs from the VHS machine and put it into the input on the computer. This requires rca to mini jack cable. You then will have no trouble at all recording the audio of your vhs to a digital file. If this seems complex, get someone to help you, but the only real cost in the rca/minijack cable – available at radio shack, or circuit city, etc. or on eBay. good luck.

  14. Does anyone have her reading “Disquieting Muses”? I have it on the VHS of Voices and Visions, but it’s hard to transcribe to digital.

  15. This is my favourite so far (I just started listening to these after having seen the movie about her/Ted), quite funny and she reads it well too..
    I find her imagery strangely familiar, seems to have inspired some ‘gothic’ musicians like bauhaus and manson.

  16. Thanks for the lovely email today and the NY Times article on the university. The Plath book sounds intriguing! x

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