O i went to open the window 129 even such a simple

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o “I went to open the window” (129), even such a simple act as opening a window reveals Baudelaire’s understanding of modern escapism. Flaubert’s Dr. Poupart’s treatment of illness includes exposure to nature, indicating that Flaubert associated the city with illness. o “Virginie commanded all her attention. The frightening experience with the bull had affected her nerve and Monsieur Poupart, the doctor, recommended sea bathing at Trouville” (10) o “Difficulty in breathing, a persistent cough, a constant high temperature and pale blotches on her cheeks all pointed to some underlying disorder. Monsieur Poupart had advised a holiday in Provence” (23) 19 th century paintings reveal a sense of isolation in the city, such as Monet’s Boulevard des Capucines and Degas’ The Absinthe Drinker . o Both paintings reveal the oppression of human dignity in the city, and the pretense for physical illness caused by emotional distress. The physical symptoms of a mental illness, such as depression in The Absinthe Drinker, reveal an underlying rejection of city living.
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The city isolated the modern urban individual and oppressed any behavior that was deemed unacceptable in “polite” society
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Notice, the shadow on the walls reflect the unacknowledged part of the person, oppressed in urban society This city woman’s only escape from the oppression of city life is in absinthe; her emotional illness is submerged in a drunken state. The tight tables add to the image that the modern urban individual is trapped within the city.
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The mass of individuals are all faceless, reflecting Monet’s impressionist idea that the city was a mass of individuals, who lacked personal identity in the crowd Baudelaire lamented the loss of honor and dignity in the modern urban individual, and this painting demonstrates the loss of significance of any one individual. The similar dress of all city inhabitants explains why the dandy would use clothing as a means of identity.
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Nature was only found in the few trees in the city or the sky, which possibly explains why Baudelaire would always talk about transcendence into the sky and freedom in the air e.g. The Albatross Tentative conclusion: There was a gradual progression throughout the 19 th century towards an understanding of mental and physical illness as equally legitimate Darwin’s writings possibly influenced the transition from an understanding of mental illness as madness into an understanding of a range of emotional maladies. The transition into the city in the 19 th century generated novel mental illnesses, which were not wholly understood by authors, such as Baudelaire, who may have pointed to a fragmented culture as the underlying cause. Ultimately 19 th century authors leave the idea of illness open for reevaluation, but lay the groundwork for a transition from a romantic view of the sick towards a scientific understanding of the underlying causes of illness. Layout: Intro Topic #1 Topic #2 Topic #3 Conclusion. These ideas and the layout are all tentative and open for reevaluation.
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