English Literature Discussion example

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English Literature Discussion

1 From one of Byron's poems, explain how it exhibits two characteristics of the "Byronic Hero".

The most famous Byron’s poem is Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage. The main character is Childe Harold, whose image became an embodiment of an absolutely new hero of the literature of that time. “Byronic hero” is a term used for the description of a character with two characteristics, particularly attractiveness and depravity (Abrams, M. H.). The attractiveness of a main hero is shown not only in his appearance, but also in his level of intelligence, way of life, and surrounding environment (Abrams, M. H.). The depravity is depicted through that fact of denying some values of the society where the main character lives, and a search of its own way of life. The main hero is shown as a rebellious, handsome, and intelligent person. At the beginning of a poem, Childe Harold is described as a young man, living in Albion, having a happy life full of joy, entertainment and pleasure. Being a descendant of a noble clan, he must be happy, but suddenly, he feels that his life becomes monotonous and everything seems ugly to him. Childe Harold wants changes and adventures. He is eager to escape from his boring life, and goes to a trip, where new world and countries gradually open his eyes to another life, quite opposite to what he saw before. This life is full of sufferings and misfortunes. He begins to hate the lifestyle of an aristocratic society and cannot find the meaning of life. The main character is sincere, deep, and rather contradictory person who searches for new ideals.

2 How do Shelley and Keats conceive of nature in a way that makes their view different from that of Wordsworth and Coleridge?

A quite new perception of nature and a belief in its mystical features characterize the representatives of Lake School (Lithgow, Douglas). Percy Bysshe Shelley and John Keats loved nature and filled their poetry with it. Shelley, transmitting his thoughts, treated natural objects as mysterious and supreme elements that inspired him (Abrams, M. H.). Keats liked to observe nature as a traveler, appreciating its physical beauty. Both writers composed poems about autumn using metaphors and symbols, while describing certain aspects of nature (Abrams, M. H.). In spite of their different perception of some details, they both loved nature and admired it connecting to their art. William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge as romantic poets described nature in different ways. Coleridge underlined various supernatural aspects of nature, while Wordsworth expressed usual aspects of nature using anecdotes of everyday life (Abrams, M. H.). Both, Coleridge and Wordsworth filled their lyrics with new content and variety of images. They valued artful poetry, and in spite of the difference in their theoretical opinions both writers successfully made poetry that was full of poetical meaning (Lithgow, Douglas). The main difference between the views of old representatives of Lake School (Wordsworth and Coleridge) and young ones (Shelley and Keats) was in the connection …

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