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3-26-08 - I Wordsworth a Born in 1770 Modernizing poems...

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March 20, 2008 I. Wordsworth a. Born in 1770. Modernizing poems. Brought it back to earth. Why poems sound the way they do today. b. Planned to coauthor poems with Coleridge . became clear that their talents were different. Better to write poems separately and publish a joint volume. c. 1798 – Lyrical ballads i. Tintern Abby was the last poem d. Blake remains a throwback in 17 th century. e. Within the history of English literature, Blake though very radical, remains essentially a deeply Christian and religious poet. In that sense, has much deeper links to the past than Wordsworth does. f. Wordsworth all the traditional machinery of Christian supernaturalism was out of the picture g. His poems are about “Lost” h. Milton was able to make use of Christian myth in order to express and ultimately resolve the problems of lost and suffer in life. Problems resolved through Christian promise of redemption i. By the late 18 th century, Christian myth was no longer regarded as accepting without question due to the development of science (Newton). j. How do you answer feelings of lost and betrayal without conferring to Christian supernaturalism. k. Wordsworth: To find redemption for this world, not utopia, but in the very world in, which is the world of us. The place in the end where we find our happiness. i. How can concretely earthly life, eternity, heaven ii. Has to confront head on without relying on the Christian myth iii. All the problems about the meaning of life iv. Far more than Blake, central prophet figure within his own poem v. The problem of salvation rests solely on the individual. The individual must somehow save himself. Wordsworth will show us how this can be done. l. Volume was fairly received. The second edition which came out in 1800. Wordsworth added a preface and explained his purpose in writing the poems. m. “For all good poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings”- Wordsworth n. The actual literal context of the poem (what happened, who) does not matter. What matters is the feelings that such context gives rise to. o. Statement 3: Wordsworth realizes that statement 1 does not withstand. He says of the opposite of what he said in statement 1. The poet reflects on an experience that occurred on the past which did arise emotions. This is when spontaneously overflow of emotions occurs because you are reliving it. p. You need practice, tranquility, the passage of time, wisdom to write poems not just emotions. q. The poem is a verbal representation of the poet’s feelings which may include a reconstruction, revised, redoing of what the poet actually felt at the time he experienced the powerful feeling that supplied the basis of the poem. II. Tintern Abby a. Pg 202 – notice the full title of the poem. Pretty mundane. (as statement 2 would suggest, not the action or situation that matters, it’s the feelings) b. Monologue- dramatic soliloquy. Overhearing the poet, thinking out loud to himself. We assume the poet is alone but in the end he is not.
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