love and death charles lamb

love and death charles lamb - Themes of Love and Death in...

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Themes of Love and Death in the Works of Charles Lamb Sarah Benton English Composition II Prof. Ray Tuesday-Friday 10-11:30 Final Paper
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While it is true that most humans go through life looking and yearning for love, and ultimately die, these are not the only emotions felt by most, and therefore can not be the only themes in literature. This idea is corroborated by the critic, Zoran Zivkovic, in a January, 2005 interview in which he states, “No philosophical, religious or scientific system can cope with this ultimate duality.” Authors generally base their works on themes from their lives and their own experiences, as does Zivkovic. Charles Lamb, author of such works as “Dream Children” and “A Bachelor’s Complaint of the Behaviour of Married People”, both from the “The Last Essays of Elia” led a very troubled life. His trials, tribulations and desires play out in his works. Lamb’s life was based around his family. He was heavily involved in the lives of his mother and sister, the latter of whom stabbed the former to death. After this murder, Lamb’s sister, Mary, came to live with him. Lamb became bogged down in caring for his mentally incompetent sister, and died childless and a bachelor in 1834. In “Dream Children”, Lamb writes about a man who is telling a story to his children about their deceased family members. The heart wrenching tale comes to an end with the man realizing that he has no children; that they were a figment of his imagination, and that he will more than likely never have the love of a family. This work directly mirrors Lamb’s struggle between family duty and his own desires. In “A Bachelor’s Complaint of the Behaviour of Married People”, Lamb outlines his contempt of those who throw their status as a couple in his face. He is obviously, with this essay, exemplifying his innate longing for a woman for whom he can care for and who can care for him. Lamb’s works directly mirrored his life experiences and themes, most notably themes of love and death. He devoted his life to helping his family out of love and duty for them, only to be left alone after some of their deaths, to 2
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await his own. Both Charles and Mary Lamb suffered from bouts of mental illness. Mary’s experiences were considerably worse, however. Mary Lamb lived with her mother for most of her life as Charles went out and experienced the world. In 1797 at the age of 33, Mary fatally stabbed her mother in a manic rage. Charles narrowly saved his beloved sister from a life in prison and brought her to live with him for the rest of his life. Mary, while not quite as famous as her brother, was still a formidable force in literature. Both Mary and Charles were contemporaries of such literary greats as William and Dorothy Wordsworth and Samuel Coleridge, one of Lamb’s closest friends. One of the more famous works attributed to the duo was “The Letters of Charles and Mary Lamb”, a still- famous collection of communications between the siblings and to other literary
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love and death charles lamb - Themes of Love and Death in...

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