by John Masefield
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
- William Ernest Henley
William Ernest Henley (1849-1903) was an English poet, critic, and editor. His best known poem is “Invictus,” published in 1875, which he wrote just following the amputation of his foot due to tuberculosis.Pair “Invictus” with “Sea Fever” and ask students to discuss how the two poems explore fate. Who controls the speakers’ fate in the two texts? How does the reference to captaining a ship in “Invictus” compare to the reference to steering a ship in “Sea Fever?” How do they provide different perspectives on fate?
The Law of Life
- Jack London
An old man is left behind by his tribe to die of exposure. As he prepares for death, he reflects on a life spent fighting nature's brutal forces.Pair “The Law of Life” with “Sea Fever” and ask students to discuss the relationship between man and nature that exists in these two texts. Is man in control of his own fate, or is he at the mercy of nature? What are the two speakers' perspectives on this? How does this influence the tone of the two texts?
Sylvia Earle: Deep Ocean Explorer
- Bobbi Katz
In Bobbi Katz’s poem “Sylvia Earle: Deep Ocean Explorer,” a speaker describes Earle’s interest exploring the ocean floor.Pair “Sea Fever” with “Sylvia Earle: Deep Ocean Explorer” and ask students to discuss how both speakers describe a love for the ocean. How do the two poems portray the ocean? How does Sylvia Earle’s interest in the ocean compare to the speaker's in “Sea Fever”?
Excerpt from Heart of Darkness
- Joseph Conrad
In this excerpt from Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, a sailor imagines what it must have been like for the Romans to come to England for the first time.Pair “Sea Fever” with “Excerpt from Heart of Darkness” and ask students to discuss how both texts depict life as a sailor. What calls the sailor in the poem to an adventure at sea? How does this compare to the normal sailors the narrator describes at the beginning of “Excerpt from Heart of Darkness”? How does this compare to Marlow, as he is described by the narrator? How does this compare to the Romans who arrived in England, as they are described by Marlow?