Comparison of The Marriage of Heaven and Hell and The Songs of Innocence & Experience

Comparison of The Marriage of Heaven and Hell and The Songs of Innocence & Experience

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Blake’s “The Songs of Innocence & Experience” and “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell” play an important role in the age of romanticism and important step in romantic poetry. Looking at the two pieces as a comparison, it can be seen that Blake used two different pieces to question traditional institutions. Blake questions institutionalized religion with “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell” and questions the industrialized age with “The Songs of Innocence and Experience”. “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell”, questions the very fabric of traditional religion through Blake’s criticisms on the need for change towards political and religious freedoms. Blake attacks the ways in which society has become by comparing good and evil while challenging the orthodoxy of conventional religion. Blake explains that people are resisting their desires and in doing so confining to the rules that the convention of religion has placed on their followers. “The Songs of Innocence & Experience comments on the industrial revolution and the affects it’s had on society. Blake touches on the socials evils that come with the industrialized revolution and the consequences of an unequal social structure. Blake comments on how the corruption of society hinders the freedoms people once felt as children bringing to light such social problems as urban poverty and misery. Blake identifies the industrialization revolution and conventional religion as the problem between man and the return to the natural state of being. Blake insinuates that the world has lost its freedom and natural beauty from being consumed in a material world full of corruption and misery. Blake uses radical questioning to address the issues of conventional religion and industrialization through “The Song...


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... through both of his pieces that conventional religion has condemned people to confinement and that as long as there is oppression of desire no individual can truly be free.








Works Cited

Blake, William. “The Marriage of Heaven and Hell”. The Broadview Anthology of British Literature: The Age of Romanticism.V.4 2006 44-51

Blake, William. “The Songs of Innocence and Experience”. The Broadview Anthology of British Literature: The Age of Romanticism.V.4 2006 36-44

Musante, R.. “Embracing the divine: The life of spirit in William Blake's "Songs of Innocence", "Songs of Experience", and "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell". Diss. Middle Tennessee State University, 2007. Dissertations & Theses: A&I, ProQuest. Web. 26 Nov. 2010.

Swearingen, James E. “William Blake’s Figural Politics”. ELH. Vol 59, No 1 (Spring 1992). John Hopkins University Press.

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