Two BITS OF Protest Poetry British Literature Essay

William Blake's poem, "London", was written in 1792 and is a description of the society where the individuals are stuck, exploited and attacked. Blake starts off the poem by explaining the financial system and steps to its results of the selling of people inside a locked system of exploitation. One method that is employed is the repetition of a specific phrase to help highlight its meaning to the fullest level. Blake uses the term "charter'd" (1-2) in the first stanza to spell it out the road and river of Thames. The word provides river and avenue a very legalistic feel as if they are safeguarded by regulations and are privately possessed. Blake moves on to explain how the people have noticeable "grades" (3-4) of weakness and woe which are like visible brands of sorrow and stress. In the next stanza Blake stresses the word "every" (5-7) five times. This phrase offers us the sense of commonality to everyone suffering. It says that no one in London is immune to the exploitation and disease. This idea is driven house with the words "mind-forg'd manacles" (8) which symbolize a world in chains; imprisoned by ideology and status quo. You'll be able to assume that there is no deviance from the status quo as the stanza itself has no deviation from its demanding iambic tetrameter meter and A-B rhyme plan. The rigid adherence to poetic meter in this stanza strongly contrast the irregular meter of the third stanza.

In the 3rd stanza Blake lists out several interpersonal positions that are damaged by the turmoil; the Chimney-sweep, Chapel, and the Soldier. The job titles outlined in the stanza are capitalized making them pronouns and personified. The chimney-sweeper is a figure of pity and industrialization because because of the increasing amount of filthy chimneys blackening the entire city with soot. The Chapel is "black'ning" (10), its reputation is becoming more tarnished as it is wanting to disregard or glaze over the brutal smoke cigars belching overall economy that Blake is explaining. The metaphor of the Soldier's blood vessels on the Palace Walls demonstrate not only a mistreatment of military but also an unhealthy leader of the country setting up a disjointed society. Proof this disjointness can be found in the framework of the 3rd stanza as it no more adheres to a stringent iambic tetrameter meter. We see this disjointedness in poetic meter proceeds into the last stanza where Blake uses the strategy of enjambment to accentuate the "Harlot's curse"(14) and "Infant's tear" (15). It is now dark and the youthful Harlot does not have a chance to lover her baby since it is a result of commerce rather than love. She moves her own misery onto the kid who'll likely continue passing it onto future generations. She also moves on her behalf disease to cheating husbands which lead us to the effective phrase "the Marriage hearse. " (16) The relationship hearse can be an oxymoron for the notion of a happy matrimony being undermined by fatality and disease and triggering the marriage to become a funeral procession for love and freedom. Blake's poem was created to imply that eye-sight is needed to lift up London out of despair and from its economy motivated exploitation.

Allen Ginsberg's poem "A Supermarket in California" is a protest poem aimed towards postwar American society and focuses most on the consumerist areas of society and having less connection between the modern world and mother nature. "A Supermarket in California" is written in prose form and will not adhere to any kind of traditional meter or rhyme system which makes it a shocking and offbeat poem that is sure to stand out which is just what a protester will need. Ginsberg is quick to start the theme of consumerism by going "searching for images" (2). In this case the images aren't real as he's longing for world to return back again to the state it was in pre-war during Whitman's time. The supermarket in this range also introduces the thought of capitalist America where berries is produced in higher quantities to be the same which is not necessarily stated in the wild. Another few lines describe how families are now shopping during the night rather than through the daytime. It could be implied these people are perfect nuclear family members and anyone who does not fit into the family structure stands out as being independent from society and considered unnatural. They in this poem are Gracia Lorca, Walt Whitman, and the presenter himself Allen Ginsberg most of whom are homosexual and also have lost their put in place society. In this time time, the homosexual community is never spoken about and it is not accepted by the norms of contemporary society as it might have been in Whitman's time. Ginsberg notes Whitman as a homosexual because he is referred to as "childless, lonesome, old grubber" (4) and not as a hubby. It is possible that Whitman is helped bring into the poem as a means of juxtaposing what Whitman defined America to be in his poetry, and what America has become in Ginsberg's poetry. The lines "who wiped out the pork chops? What price bananas?" (5) pose questions of economics. In Whitman's day a consumer would know where the food originated from, who killed it, and exactly how it acquired its price. It really is implied that Whitman's questions cannot be responded to by the the store employees. Ginsberg is saying that scheduled to consumerism, we no more know precisely what we could buying and are therefore no longer connected to aspect through the produce offered by a supermarket. Ginsberg also uses Whitman's tasting spree through the store as a way of exhibiting that in Whitman's day there was no capitalism that required that you always purchase your pleasures. There is a recommendation here that paying for ones pleasures is not natural. The collection "the entrance doors close in an hour" (8) shows that Ginsberg is starting to acknowledge that his vision of Whitman's eyesight of the natural world won't carry on as it cannot endure the modern economy were you can purchase everything at a cost. Their search through "solitary streets" (10) earlier symbols that signify "the lost America" (11), which Whitman explained in his poetry, will only cause them to the complete darkness and loneliness in today's society. Ginsberg closes the poem by assessing "the lost America" (11) to Hades. Charon was the guardian of Hades who ferry souls across the river Styx. Charon discontinued brief and let Whitman out on the "smoking loan provider" (12) of Lethe. The river Lethe, regarding to Greed mythology, would cause forgetfulness to the people who drank from it. You can surmise that Ginsberg is discussing modern society and how it forgets its history and the difference between what is natural and exactly what is a product of humans. This is exactly what ties Ginsberg's protest against modern America alongside one another. The peach, the porkchops, the bananas in the supermarket no more create a marriage between the consumer and the natural world from which the berry originated.

Allen Ginsberg's and William Blake's poems are both cases poetry made to make a declaration about how modern culture has improved for the worse and that a better alternative must be found. Even though these bits were written over sixty years ago, we can still discover a way to relate to them today. The thought of society shedding touch with nature as it is expressed in Grinsberg's poem "A supermarket in Califoria", is still a concern with today's refined food, indoor berry factories, and now even greater supermarkets. Unfortunately the impact of William Blake's poem has lost quite a bit of its great shock value on today's contemporary society but we can still relate to the idea of mechanization with the encroaching robotic forearms spread of incurable diseases. If we can feel the impact of the poetry now in 2011, consider how much impact and distress value the items would have acquired on their people when these were first written.

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