Poetry And Language In William Blake's Songs Of Innocence

1177 Words 5 Pages
Poetry and language have always incited insurgence among numerous poets a means to overcome conformity among society’s ideals. William Blake, a renowned poet during the Romantic Period, saw poetry as a clever method of displaying his true opinions by introducing novel possibilities of a different social order and by inducing change in the minds of men. Residing in London during a time of important historical turning points such as the Industrial Evolution, new societal standards for both men and women, and a rise in patriarchy and in superiority of the supreme white race, Blake utilized his language to delineate his proper views of the world, notions that the early 1800’s London society believed were unwarranted, dangerous, and unnecessary …show more content…
Thus, William Blake, through his Songs of Innocence, challenged societal ideals by portraying racial power among Africans and the white race, by utilizing children as the role models of society rather than adults, and by demonstrating the corruption of the urban setting, which help human beings gradually avoid the conflicts that occur in their lives. As a financially empowered society that had been moving toward a direction of technological innovation during the Industrial Revolution, London was a flourishing component of the British Empire, which participated in the imperialism of Africa from the late 17th to the early 20th century. England had believed that imperialism served a purely altruistic purpose, a means to better the lives of the black race (Brantlinger, 2010). Consequently, William Blake, in “The Little Black Boy,” dichotomizes the racist views that the British held by inverting the ideals of Social Darwinism that were formulated during imperialism. For example, in “Introduction,” Blake states …show more content…
“Staining the water clear” (line 18) parallels to the evils of the textile industry and the corrupt city through the incessant need to copyright a piece of art and to profit from this entity. Furthermore, during the early 1800’s, individuals accepted any means of gaining profit—i.e. child labor. Owners of huge companies accepted children, despite deaths on the job, because they would receive more money. Blake, meanwhile, is demonstrating that by creating the ability to copyright and to market the song, the material, instead of gaining value through profit, would lose value, because the song would no longer hold meaning. Artists, like the company owners during the industrial revolution, would forget the purpose of their art. Consequently, Blake is continuously showing that the monetary value can never parallel to the personal value of the content for the writer, yet individuals during the 1800’s believed that with more materials sold, they would achieve happiness. Unfortunately, the obsession with greed and money only produced slums in the city and a greater percentage of

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