How to write an accurate
… a paragraph which could fit
into an English essay
In his poem Homo Suburbiensis, how does Bruce
Dawe portray his perception of the Australian
In his poem Homo Suburbiensis, what language
techniques does Bruce Dawe use to portray his
perception of the Australian Identity?
In his poem Homo Suburbiensis, how does
Bruce Dawe portray his perception of the
In his poem Homo Suburbiensis, what
language techniques does Bruce Dawe
use to portray his perception of the
1. Statement (or topic) sentence:
In his poem Homo Suburbiensis, Bruce Dawe uses a
variety of poetic techniques to portray a clear
image of the suburban life of a typical
(idea / concern / opinion / point of view)
Character / personality / self /
distinctive values and attitudes
Sentence 2? What next? You should
give specific detail about the
“identity” (ie: the value / attitude)
In his poem Homo Suburbiensis, Bruce Dawe uses a variety of
poetic techniques to portray a clear image of the suburban life of a
typical Australian man. The idea the suburban man is a
down-to-earth (‘true blue’) Aussie bloke… is
conveyed throughout the poem homo suburbiensis.
• The importance of ordinary man… and the idea that Australian’s celebrate the
down-to-earth ‘true blue’ Aussie bloke… is a perception which is conveyed
throughout the poem Homo Suburbiensis.
• Dawe shows that ordinary suburban Australian men find solitude and peace and
“me time” in a backyard. The place (outside the house – away from the wife and
kids) lets him collect his thoughts and reflect on his life. (…in this case the place
is a vege garden – in another text by another composer – it might be a shed in
• Bruce Dawe established the suburban man’s characteristics from the first line
“One constant in a world of variables.”
Techniques= contrast (of singular and plural + the same and variety…
evokes that this man is an unchanging character in a world of variety and
change. In his garden he can be himself (constant) and keep the rest of the
world at bay.
Analysis of poem – focusing on the “ideas about the
• The vegetable patch is both ordered and wild.
“______________________” are contrasting
images which metaphorically represents the quiet
reflections of the persona.
• And all the things he takes down with him there.
Ambiguity “The only things he takes down with him
to this place of tranquility are his thoughts.”
Alliteration “Th” and “T” in “The only things he takes
down with him to this place of tranquility are his thoughts.”
A clear image in ‘Homo Suburbiensis’ is that of the typical
Australian bloke, who comes home after work and relaxes in
his backyard as the day ends. The man is a suburban
householder with an ordinary Australian life standing alone
in his backyard on a quiet evening among his vegetables. The
simple everyday language used by Dawe “____________
________________________” evokes the idea that
suburban man is ______________.
• The cumulative imagery in “compost” and “rubbish” suggests
that Dawe is both celebrating suburbia, while in some ways
puts down the suburban householders dreams.
• Dawe develops a sympathetic tone towards the persona –
“lost in a green confusion” as even in the retreat of his
backyard he is “lost” or stuck in the lifestyle of suburbs.
• The peace, beauty of nature and freedom he encounters in is backyard
allows the persona to relax in his middle class life. To be an ordinary bloke
in Australia, it is typical for men to hide their concerns and troubles.
• Dawe represents that the persona needs an escape from the pressures of
suburban life, highlighted in the list of nouns “TIME, PAIN, LOVE, HATE,
AGE, EMOTION, and LAUGHTER”.
• Dawe depicts the down-to-earth simplicity of Australian life being reflected
in the simple afternoon experience in a suburban back yard.
• The garden represents the mind which is chaotic when wild,
but is also beautiful and fertile - like a vegetable garden. The
man's thoughts, as represented by the garden, may seem
chaotic but there is also a sense of order - in “one constant”
“the compost box” and “the back fence”.
• The title, Homo Suburbiensis, is a parody of scientific
classification methods: Man of the Suburbs.
• The poet views the man as a scientist would a view a specimen:
interested, but with detachment, and perhaps a quiet joy in the
beauty of it all.
• The title, Homo Suburbiensis, is an allusion to
scientific classification methods: Man of the
• The title suggests that Australian suburban man
is a particular species – with specific personality
characteristics and patterns of behaviour. The
title suggest that the Aussie Suburban man lives
in a habitat which is contained and unique. The
title further suggests that the behaviour and
characteristics of Homo Suburbiensis are
“constant” and predictable.
• Aussie blokes usually hang-out in the back
yard when they want to collect their thoughts.