Aesthetics of Shock in Wordsworth Essay
Aesthetics of Shock in Wordsworth
What say you, then,
to times when half the city shall break out
Full of one passion, vengeance, rage, or fear?
To executions, to a street on fire,
Mobs, riots, or rejoicing? From those sights
Take one,--an annual festival, the Fair...
--William Wordsworth, The Prelude (7:644-49).
Walter Benjamin writes that, at the turn of the nineteenth century, "fear, revulsion and horror were the emotions which the big-city crowd aroused in those who first