British Literature of Victorian Era
Industrialism during the Victorian Period serves as the new beginning of the age. From a conservative era, industrialism played a significant role to the modernity and liberty of the period from the past civilizations; this transformation does not only affect the social, economic, and political aspects of the period but also its literature. Many writers, authors, and poets emerged during the industrialism that brought new light and path to the beginning and renovation of Victorian Period.
Industrialism affects the Victorian Poetry as well as the novels of the era. Through poetry, the poets are capable in describing the lives and situations of the people in longer verses. Within the concept of Romantic poetry, industrialism develops a deeper perspective as it contains social change. Therefore, it can be said that industrialism opens the door of power and alteration to the traditional construction of literature specifically the Victorian Poetry. Matthew Armold is one of the most popular poets during the Victorian Period.
His works described the transformation of European lifestyle from Romanticism to Industrialism. However, the concept of industrialism in Arnold’s poetry can be seen within the context of romantic drama. Some of these are “The Buried Life”, “Dover Beach”, and “The Scholar Gypsy. ” Arnold’s “The Buried Life” is about the situations of the whole society. The narrator of the poem discusses the difference between men and women’s identity during the period where women are already part of the society.
Women have better opportunities and status through the existence of different laws and policies imposed by the system. “I knew the mass of men conceal’d / Their thoughts, for fear that if reveal’d / They would by other men be met / With blank indifference, or with blame reproved; / I knew they lived and moved / Trick’d in disguises, alien to the rest / Of men, and alien to themselves–and yet / The same heart beats in every human breast! (Arnold, 16-23)” the poem describes hope for new beginning.
The emotions within the poem show happiness with sort of questioning the new trend of the society. The construction of the poem is in the context of Romanticism but as the reader understands the point of the narrator, it will be seen that the poem symbolizes change that opens various transition from the conservative formation of the society to the liberal context. The basic example is the concept of ‘breast’ that shows different meanings and essence.
Throughout the poem – whether a part of woman’s body, a depiction of femininity, womanhood, or motherhood, and also a descriptive word to described the transformation of woman’s status into the society. On the other way around, the “Dover Beach” described the flow of social change – like the sea, there is no assurance where it goes but it will take the calmness of life while enduring the pain of thunderstorms and winds. The narrator shows the religious side of the poem where there is a concept of faith and destiny.
The attack of the author within his poem is simple but spontaneous to the acquisition of knowledge from the environment and religion. “So various, so beautiful, so new, / Hath really neither joy, nor love, nor light, / Nor certitude, nor peace, nor help for pain; / And we are here as on a darkling plain / Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight, / Where ignorant armies clash by night (Arnold, 32-37). ” It also shows how religion transformed in a significant basis where it has its own way of defining the word ‘faith;’ through the discussion of radical journey of the narrator and his society.
In the poem, the narrator discusses how happy he is to obtain new form of living. Though it is different from the common good, it gives new light to conquer the upcoming circumstances of life. Like “The Buried Life,” the “Dover Beach” is also constructed in romantic idea where there is love, happiness, and traditional style of passion but Arnold created the poem not to discuss its romantic essence because he wants to convey the impact of industrialism to the whole society of Victorian Period.
The point of view of the poem is based on the concept of transition from one angle to another and also the emotions of the public towards it. The “Scholar Gypsy,” is about the new age of ideas and knowledge of the Victorian Peiord. The narrator discusses the new way of acquiring learning from the new formed society. Because industrialism demonstrates several changes like the English class structure, the poem discusses the manifestations of these changes to the academic institutions and the system as a whole.
The poem literally described the life of a man who lived in a country side. In the beginning, his life is the usual depiction of human life – happy and contented in his simple being. However, he could not accept the social transformation that emerged in his environment and led him to escape from modernity to hide from the corners of the forest and live alone. He is not prepared with the transition that is why he could not learn the new idea of alteration from conservative to liberal society. “And then they land, and thou art seen no more.
/ Maidens who from the distant hamlets come / To dance around the Fyfield elm in May, / Oft through the darkening fields have seen thee roam, / Or cross a stile into the public way (Arnold, 80-85). ” The poem discusses the new life of Victorian period in general. It shows how women work, how men live, how the system evolves, and how the society changed. This is a general viewing of the whole renovation where there are new policies and laws that will protect both men and women. Women could dance for joy while men became busier with their lives and careers.
As a conclusion, the three poems have different attacks and perspectives on the issue of industrialism during the Victorian Period. Matthew Arnold described the different angles on how men and women of the society accepted the new lifestyle of the era. Some became happy but some also disappeared because of this renovation. In the beginning of industrialism, the Victorian Period made a success because of the different changes happened and nurtured the whole society but as it went through its end, these changes benefited some but not everyone in this period.
The three poems showed how the industrialism affects the people or the whole nation. Through these verses, we could be able to understand what the people had experienced during those times. Works Cited Arnold, Matthew. “Scholar-Gipsy. ” Bartleby. com 17 November 2008. http://www. bartleby. com/101/751. html Arnold, Matthew. “Dover Beach. ” 17 November 2008. http://www. victorianweb. org/authors/arnold/writings/doverbeach. html Arnold, Matthew. “The Buried Life. ” 17 November 2008. http://www. victorianweb. org/authors/arnold/writings/buriedlife. html