Mid Term Exam

Perhaps two of the most studied periods of literature are none other than the neo ical era and that of romanticism. Still, just as there are elements that signal the transitions in technology, or of the segue between chapters in a book, so too are there authors that behave as transitional poets between these two noted times in literature. It has been argued, to that effect, that Thomas Gray, among a handful of others, has been one of those very poets, creating a noticeable shift in the aspects that people could see when observing trends in their work.
Romanticism, it has been claimed, was nothing shy of a revolution against what had come to be valued as societal norms in the Age of Enlightenment. a natural response to rationalizations of nature through science. Working to move away from the standards and expectations of their contemporary societies, it was a new shade of literature that had previously been tinted with heaping helpings of satire, wit, reason, logic, and predictability.
Gray can be considered a transitional poet because he took what was still good and fresh from the neoclassical period and combined certain elements that were later key to the movement of romanticism. This poet brought some life and feeling back into his work, as opposed to being stilted, emotions were observed and pondered upon, bringing to life the realities of how situations actually unfold in the real world.
As in all poetry, scholars, and people in general, seek to understand a hidden meaning, message, or moral being set forth within the stanzas. Coleridge’s Rime of the Ancient Mariner is no different. While many would claim that the albatross is a representation of a Christian soul, or perhaps something simpler, like an omen, I believe it is more a representation of burden and hardships that humans face simply for the decisions they make. regardless of how benign.
Still, what exactly does that mean? People form their own perceptions about how something is good luck or bad luck. For the case of the Mariner, his fellow crewman had come to the conclusion that the albatross was their savior, bringing the south wind and ultimately their rescue. By killing the bird, the man earns both the contempt of his companions and the literal weight of his transgression, as he is forced to wear the bird about his neck. One may feel as if he has been cursed, and in a way that is what the bird is representing. the difficulties that arise with the simple act of killing a bird, something no doubt that was a common pastime aboard ships so that the Mariner would not think twice about it.
Pope uses “Rape of the Lock” as a mock- epic. turning the mundane actions of regular people into events tantamount to those that occurred in The Odyssey or The Iliad. Creating a work of literature in light of a family feud that erupted because one young man was “impertinent” enough to sneak a lock of hair from a fair young lady, chaos ultimately ensued.
The card game that takes place is nothing short of a battle, with all of the players scrambling to win each round and each ending in a close call. Really, though, this game could be representative of Belinda’s heart and how people are fighting for the love and affection of one so many hold dear. This is even alluded too when the Sylphs discover that there is an “earthly lover lurking in her heart.”
Mary Wollstonecraft was the author of the feminist piece A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. While striving to make many points, one in particular has stood out to readers for many years, and that is that Wollstonecraft compares women to soldiers. The real question, then, is why?
It is thought that Wollstonecraft was arguing that women are valued only for their appearance. not unlike soldiers. There is a lot of pomp and ceremony to get ready, get the uniform just right, etc… to be paraded around and get back to work. Additionally, the appearance of soldiers can provide comfort for friends with thoughts of strength and cause hesitation among enemies who may not wish to go against them. Ultimately, however, they are for show, they have other duties, but just the knowledge that they are there brings status, power, resources, etc…