The theatre of daily life: Restoration diarists

The theatre of daily life: Restoration diarists

Romantic poetry Millennium I pp. 220 - 221 STUDY QUESTIONS 1. What are the main themes in Blakes poetry? Blakes Songs of Innocence (1789) portray the un-fallen state of man ( the state in which humanity was before Adam and Eve were banished by God from Heaven for committing the sin of pride) while Songs of Experience (1794) deal with the presence of evil and injustice in the world. Blake was also very much concerned with social problems like the exploitation of children at work. 2. What did Wordsworth mainly write about? Wordsworths poems, such as I Wondered Lonely as a Cloud and Tintern Abbey, mostly deal with the countryside, simple folk and mans communion with Nature.

3. Define Wordsworths idea of poetry in the Preface to Lyrical Ballads He explained his preference for ordinary subjects and ordinary language. He stated that poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings and that these originated from emotions recollected in tranquillity. 4. What kind of poems did Coleridge contribute to the collection? To Lyrical Ballads Coleridge contributed poems on supernatural and magic subjects , like The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner (1798) and Kubla Kan (1816), set in exotic half-magical lands. STUDY QUESTIONS 5. Why was Byron a legendary figure? In which ways do his heroes resemble Byron himself? Both in his life and in his works, Byron embodied the aspirations of the generation brought up in the ideals of the French Revolution. The heroes of his long narrative poems, Childe Harolds Pilgrimage (1812-1818) and Don

Juan (1819-1824), are bold and impetuous and they rebel against social codes and hypocrisy as Byron did. 6. What are the main themes of Shelleys poetry? The ideals of freedom and happiness as in his Ode to the West Wind (18191824) and the aspirations to infinity, as in Prometheus Unbound (1820). 7. What do Keats Odes and ballads deal with? In his Ode to a Grecian Urn (1819) Keats joined an acute awareness of lifes brevity with the belief in the ethical value of beauty, while in a ballad like La Bell Dame Sans Mercy (1819) he showed his love for Romantic subjects. WRITING NES 8. The poetry, features and themes of the first generation of Romantic poets (maximum 250 words). William Blake was a forerunner but also an isolated figure. Although self-taught, the simplicity of his poems is only apparent. Next to the un-fallen state of man (Songs of Innocence) he composed songs on the presence of evil and injustice in

the world (Songs of Experience). The two states are complementary, one does not prevail on the other. True Romanticism began with the publication of the Lyrical Ballads and its Preface in 1800, It was a joint creation of two friends in the Lake District. William Wordsworths contribution is in the Romantic spirit, language and subject matter. His poems are based on the countryside, country folk, mans communion with nature. The Preface is considered the English Romantic Manifesto. His preference is for ordinary subjects and language. His poetry derives from the free overflow of powerful feelings coming from emotions recollected in tranquillity. Great was the influence he exercised when he sang of the child in his primitive innocence but with greater power of perception than the adult. Samuel Taylor Coleridge contributed poems on the supernatural and magic subjects, instead. Some of his poems are in exotic half-magical settings, others are called the demonic poems for the area they explore. Together the two poets embody the two sides of English Romanticism: the ordinary and the supernatural. (211 words)

WRITING NES 9. The poetry, features and themes of the second generation of Romantic poets (maximum 150 words). Among the Romantic poets of the second generation, Lord Byron was a living legend. He died in Greece for Greek independence. He wrote tales of adventure in exotic lands whose protagonists resemble him: bold and rebellious against injustice and hypocrisy. His close friend Percy Bysshe Shelley , led a life of scandal and exile, too. He was an anarchist and an atheist. In Italy he wrote his best production: lyrics and odes where nature is linked to the ideals of freedom and happiness. John Keats died young and abroad too. He believed in the ethical value of beauty which is eternal and symbolized by the Greek beauty of the urn, whose scenes are suspended in time. (116 words).

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