English Literature





Through which poetic devices are social woes explored in ‘London’?

3 years ago


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Francesco Murphy

1 Answer

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Hi Francesco,

There are many poetic devices that explore social struggles within these poems therefore I will give you one example to get you started:

P: In the poem 'London' William Blake uses metaphors to explore the effect of poverty on the capital in the late 1700's.

E: As the character in the poem walks through the streets they notice the 'blackning Church'

A: The word 'blackning' could imply the physical state of the building due to the effects of the industrial revolution which left many buildings covered in soot and therefore appear as if they were blackened. However, it could be interpreted as a metaphor for the Church's corruption during this time; by their very nature churches are supposed to bring light and hope to a community and should be a source of morality and stability but instead, the term 'blackning' implies that they are dark places of no relief. This explores the sheer horror of the social woes in the poem London as even the churches- which were the last hope for many- are corrupt and offer no relief to the poor during their darkest hours.

I hope this helps! I have laid my answer out in the expected PEA form to offer you more support with your paragraphs. Please give me kudos if you found this helpful as this would really help me.


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