Presentation on theme: "Reading and Writing Skills for Students of Literature in English: Romanticism Enric Monforte Jacqueline Hurtley Bill Phillips."— Presentation transcript:
Reading and Writing Skills for Students of Literature in English: Romanticism Enric Monforte Jacqueline Hurtley Bill Phillips
William Blake bielefeld.de/lili/personen/fleischmann/d_archsuse05/299 _ept_gesamt.htm
William Blake The second of five children; his father was a hosier. He grew up in London and had visionary experiences. He saw angels in a tree at Peckham Rye and the prophet Ezekiel in a field. Raffaello The Vision of Ezekiel bielefeld.de/lili/personen/fleischmann/d_arch suse05/299_ept_gesamt.htm l/5roma/5/08ezekie.html
1772 apprenticed to an engraver Royal Academy as an engraving student. Strongly disliked Sir Joshua Reynolds, its president. Sir Joshua Reynolds addoc/reynolds.jpg Lady Elizabeth Delmé and her Children
In 1782, Blake married Catherine Boucher. “Blake’s marriage to the beautiful Catherine Boucher, daughter of a London market gardener, with whom he sunbathed naked in his garden at Lambeth, was childless but intensely happy.” Holmes, Richard. The Romantic Poets and their Circle. London: National Portrait Gallery Publications, p.17
Blake’s radical dissenting background 17th century: many protestant sects opposed to the Anglican Church. In general they were: millenarians, antinomian. Blake disliked the Old Testament, its angry God keeping humanity in ignorance. He liked the New Testament with Jesus a liberator of humanity from all restrictions.
Blake was an antinomian: The antinomians rejected obedience as legalistic; the good life flowed from the inner working of the Holy Spirit. They are often anarchistic.
Blake’s political radicalism Anti-authoritarian. Religion and politics cannot be separated. Defended the poor and the marginalised.
What do you know about London? Is the poem a celebration or a critique of the city?
wanderpain charter’dsign flowwalk markmapped woemoving water Match the words on the left from stanza 1 with the appropriate word(s) on the right
wanderwalk charter’dmapped flowmoving water marksign woepain
Explain the following from stanza 2: ban mind-forg’d manacles e1.jpg
Stanza 3: What is this man’s job? Chimney sweeper Could a small child do this job? knutsford.co.uk/frameset.php?main=/ask_j oan/irlam.htm
“blackning”: what does the term “black” suggest to you? Why is the Church “blackning”? What about the use of “appalls”? rade
What is happening to the soldier? What does “hapless” mean? chive.html
What do the chimney sweep and the soldier have in common? What do the Church and the Palace have in common?
Stanza 4 Find words related to death and disease curse, blasts, blights, plagues, hearse Find words related to human relationships harlot, infant, marriage Francois Boucher Virgin and Child com/artistsc.iml?painting= 3050 A Harlot’s Progress 1732 William Hogarth erg/hogarth/1732.HarlotsProgres s.2.b.jpg
What are the social and political institutions Blake attacks in the poem? How far does the poem go in its criticism of late 18th century society?
Do you agree that the following are alluded to in “London”? The French Revolution The British Empire The Enlightenment The Industrial Revolution
A closer look at the term “charter’d” I wander thro each charter’d street Near where the charter’d thames does flow And mark in every face I meet Marks of weakness, marks of woe
Magna Carta ki/Image:Magna_Carta.jpg
An earlier version of the poem Why should I care for the men of thames Or the cheating waves of charter’d streams Or shrink at the little blasts of fear That the hireling blows into my ear Tho born on the cheating banks of Thames Tho his waters bathed my infant limbs I spurnd his waters away from me I was born a slave but I long to be free
Chartered companies represent privilege. In 1793 the Honourable East India Company was forced to accept a government review of its practices in India. Charter’d associated with cheating: commons/8/87/India1760_1905.jpg
The West India Docks in 1810, by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Charles Pugin (notice the enormous wharehouses in the background) The Thames dockyard, especially the HEIC’s, was corrupt. Dockyard corruption seriously damaged the efficiency of the navy during the French wars just beginning (early 1793). India-Docks-by-Rowlandson-and-Pugin.html
Government agents (hirelings) informed on anti-government movements. Blake sympathised with the French Revolution and its supporters. sans-culotte Louis-Léopold Boilly ( ) c/sans-culottes
1790 and 1794 Habeas Corpus Suspension Acts led to the imprisonment without trial of hundreds of people. London's notorious Newgate Prison, on the left, looking towards Old Bailey. erald- massey.org. uk/bezer/b_r egina_v_bez er.htm
1774 emigrated to Philadelphia 1787 Returned to England Published “Rights of Man” 1.5 million sold in England. Forced to flee to France, became a deputy in the French National Convention. Disillusioned by situation in France, returned to US in Thomas Paine itutionDay/FoundersGallery/index.htm
It is a perversion of terms to say that a charter gives rights. It operates by a contrary effect - that of taking rights away. Rights are inherently in all the inhabitants; but charters, by annulling those rights in the majority, leave the right, by exclusion, in the hands of a few...The only persons on whom they operate are the persons whom they exclude...Therefore, all charters have no other than an indirect negative operation. Thomas Paine “The Rights of Man”
A closer look at the term “mark” I wander thro each charter’d street Near where the charter’d thames does flow And mark in every face I meet Marks of weakness, marks of woe
Genesis 4:15 And the LORD said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the LORD set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him. Cain killing Abel
Revelation 13:16 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: 13:17 And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. monster%20&%20beast%20with%20lamb%20horns_small.jpg
I see London blind & age-bent begging thro the Streets Of Babylon, led by a child, his tears run down his beard Jerusalem
Revelation 17:5 And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH 17:18 And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.
But most thro midnight streets I hear How the youthful Harlots curse Blasts the newborn Infants tear And blights with plagues the Marriage hearse The Whore of Babylon ges/frontline/shows/apocaly pse/explanation/brevelation.html
Babylon is associated with the corrupt state, corrupt institutions, worldly power and authority, an idea common to the sects of the 17th-18th centuries (and Rastafarianism). Blake associates the state with Babylon and slavery Second stanza: In every voice; in ever ban The german-forg’d links I hear.
“German-forg’d links”? The house of Hanover ruled Britain from People feared that Hanoverian troops would be brought in to suppress English radicals. George III ght.gov.uk/output/P age2944.asp
“mind forg’d” suggests self-imposed restrictions. [I]t is not necessary to use force to constrain the convict to good behaviour, the madman to calm, the worker to work... The efficiency of power, its constraining force have, in a sense, passed over to the other side - to the side of its surface of application. He who is subjected to a field of visibility, and who knows it, assumes responsibility for the constraints of power; he makes them play spontaneously upon himself; he inscribes in himself the power relation in which he simultaneously plays both roles; he becomes the principal of his own subjection. Foucault, Michel. “Panopticism” Discipline and Punish 1975
If he believes in Justice, he will submit unconditionally to the rules of the Law, and may even protest when they are violated, sign petitions, take part in a demonstration etc... the ideological representation of ideology is itself forced to recognise that every ‘subject’ endowed with a ‘consciousness’ and believing in the ‘ideas’ that his ‘consciousness’ inspires in him and freely accepts, must ‘act according to his desires’, must therefore inscribe his own ideas as a free subject in the actions of his material practice. If he does not do so, ‘that is wicked’. Louis Althusser Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses 1977
From Proverbs of Heaven and Hell: Sooner murder an infant in its cradle than nurse unacted desires.