Appunti, Tesina di, appunto lingue

The little black boy, The Chimney Sweeper, The Tyger, London

ricerca 1
ricerca 2

The little black boy:

In this child-monologue Blake's write about the little black boy's perspective on Christianity and salvation may well be ironic, forming the basis for a more savage attack on religious and social hypocrisy. The child's mother consoles the child with a vision of a better life to come, away from the prejudices and hardship of this life, and the child accepts this, encouraging him to a further vision of leading (rather than being led by) the little white English boy to God and Heaven. The mother's teaching may itself be a form of 'innocence', and the boy's vision of a Heaven, transcending the divisions of race, is certainly 'innocent'. In the first stanza Blake wrote "Soul is white" This sentence introduces the primary conflict of the poem: the idea of 'white' is, in some way, preferable to the idea of 'black.' 'White' is the ideal; when the physical clouds and their colors have been left behind, presumably at the entrance to heaven, white will be the color of the soul. In this way, the little black boy does desire to 'be like him,' to have the color of the English boy's skin and soul. Moreover the expression "bereav'd of light" could mean that the Little Black Boy is a ghost in a machine, a white soul in a black body, as if bereav'd of light. 'Bereav'd' here has the force of 'dispossessed' or 'divested'. At the fifth stanza we can noticed the use of the word 'Bear'. In this context it has usually been taken to mean that our life on earth has, as its primary purpose, learning to suffer or endure . . . [but] learning to 'bear the beams of love' means learning how to bring them forth, produce them, give birth to them, which is precisely what the mother is doing with her own son and the rising sun. Moreover the expression "Is but a cloud" point out that the mother's beliefs are hardly original: the image of the body as a cloud that shades the soul appears in both Plato and DanteThe mother's argument is almost certainly an effort to prepare the boy for a descent into the knowledge of good and evil, which for him will involve asking questions about the difference of skins. In the last stanza when the poets wrote "he will then love me" can make us understand that the use of the word 'then' reveals the persistence of the black boy's feelings of inferiority. 'He [the little black boy] is glad that, as his mother's arguments imply, he is God's favorite, but only because the English child (who is white both inside and out) will learn to love him. The mother has only partly reassured her son; he still has fears of his own inferiority'.

In the poem little black Boy the Cloud is a symbolic word. In fact when the little black Boy talks about his black body and his sunburnt face, he defines them clouds. We know that a cloud is a meteorological phenomenon that prevents the beans of sun from giving light and heat to the earth. Here the cloud is something that hinder the black child to be loved from the society and from God as an English white child. In this way in my opinion Blake criticises deeply a sad phenomenon of his age: the slave-trade.

The Chimney Sweeper:

In the poem's patent terms, a child whose mother has died is suddenly worth something. The scene of primal attachment, of child to mother, is displaced by an eruption of the underlying system of property rights and barter. The repeated 'weep weep weep weep,' with its introduction of metrical difficulty into the poem, is no mispronunciation, but rather, a clear articulation of the commodity fetish to which the child--no longer child, but chimney sweeper--must succumb. Blake though the resonance of the sacrificial lamb--'who cried when his head / That curl'd like a lambs back, was shav'd'--preure the New Dispensation, the poem offers only a poignantly insufficient redemption in the dream to come. Like Isaac bound by Abraham on the hilltop ('Father, behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?'), Tom's 'innocence' blinds him to the totalizing religious and moral structures that shape his predicament. The narrator's sacrifice--his shearing and induction--has already taken place; from the infantile 'weep' he's moved into a world of commonality as little Tom's comforter, or properly into the rôle of socializing agent: 'Hush Tom never mind it, for when your head's bare, / You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair.' The desacralized rite becomes a nursery of English virtues: forbearance and quietude. Though the resonances of the sacrificial lamb--'who cried when his head / That curl'd like a lambs back, was shav'd'--preure the New Dispensation, the poem offers only a poignantly insufficient redemption in the dream to come. For Tom, though, a mere child who, by accident of birth or misfortune, finds himself exiled from the fireside, the irrationality of his situation cloaks itself in a dream, reported, not by himself, but by the poem's speaker: 'thousands of sweepers / Were all of them lock'd up in coffins of black[.]' To the sweepers the hearth is a cinder-floored maw that opens, quite literally for most, into death; the chimneys are coffins of black. And a child, continually blackened with carcinogenic soot, might also be said to occupy a corporeal coffin of black.

The irony is heightened by a shift of tense at the third line: 'Then down a green plain leaping laughing they run / And wash in a river and shine in the Sun.' These are the lines Blake illustrates at the foot of the plate. There's no doubt that Blake believed death to be a passage into joyousness, but the 'death' offered in the dream is sheer innocence, and translates into Tom's experience as acquiescence to his sacrifice.

In the first poem about Chimney Sweeper the little child is alone in the world, his parents have died and nobody can help him. In the second one instead little child's parents are alive but they are completely indifferent to the destiny of their son, who will live in misery and poverty. But they seem not to realise that in selling their son they are condemning him to slavery and death.

In these two poem is also pointed out Blake's view of religion. In the first one religion is represented by the angel who shows the reality of spiritual life and its capability of changing and improving the quality of material life; but it is only an illusionary dream and it probably can succeed only after death. In fact the house of the chimney sweeper are allegorically represented by black coffins that are open by the bright key of the white angel: but this is the only light that they can see and only during a dream or after death. But in particular way is criticism is in the second one, the one belonging to the song of experience, the Church is seen as an hypocritical institution which isn't aware of its original Christian function, which is more and more thirsty of power, which is not interested in social problems.

The Tyger.

In the Tiger there are a sense of terror associated to a sense of wonder; the tiger seems to belong to the group of Songs which shows both states: Innocence and Experience. The final impression of this poem is that the tiger is a creative energy which is still "burning bright" dispelling the forest of the night. The tiger represent the evil: but she is elegant, and fascinating something that can be reconnected to sublime.


London is a very important poem because it shows the nature of Blake's relationship with his time. Even the most immediate cry of indignation on seeing and hearing while walking, in his body and spirit, is contemporary London, is a complex intellectual experience. This poem deals with the London of 1790: the image is barren and rotten, it isn't an image of disease and violence. Disease and violence are connected in first stanza to what Blake calls "chartering", that is the social necessity of giving a home to every street and even to the great river. These marks of civilization, of establishment, of laws and order are united to the marks in every face the poet meet. It's as if the "chartering" were the cause of these marks of darkness and of woe. This is explained in the second stanza where Blake introduces the idea of the "mind forg'd manacles". This is the reason for the crying in the second stanza and for the revolutionary hints in the third one: the chimney sweeper, a symbol of a social injustice, "appals" the blackening Church, while the "hapless soldier's sigh" is turned into blood running down palace walls. Here Blake in my opinion is thinking to the French revolution. In the second part of the poem the victims and the oppressors are mentioned. The Church itself is appalled by reality even if it's unable to change the quality of the material life and supports the social Establishment. The soldier is hopeless because he can be seen as both an agent and victim of repression, the young prostitute is forced to sell her body and to have illegitimate children. The final phrase is also striking because it's a variation of the expected marriage bed. London is a world of darkness, disease, suffering and death.

Galleria di foto e immagini per: london


© ePerTutti.com : tutti i diritti riservati
Condizioni Generali - Invia - Contatta