Lyrical Ballads Captures The Hour of Feeling

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Lyrical Ballads were written in a time of great change. They were dominated by the French Revolution and both Wordsworth and Coleridge felt great impact from this. There was disruption all over with the American War of Independence and other wars worldwide. Britain itself was changing rapidly due to colonial expansion, which brought new wealth, ideas and fashion, and there was much disturbance to both the people and the land with the act of enclosure, which may have meant more effective farming but less work. The introduction of the Poor Laws meant that landowners paid their remaining staff very little knowing that they would be supplemented by poor relief. However the conditions stated by the Laws before aid would be given were very similar to ?The Last Of The Flock? with people having to give up every means of self support and therefore reduce the chance of them ever living independently again. The Industrial Revolution introduced the new ?middle? class for which many of these poems were written for. They use simple language to allow them to understand and self educate, which many of them were very interested in doing and bettering themselves, much like Wordsworth himself and his sister as shown in ?Tintern Abbey?. Here he talks of her being at the stage of education that he was five years before when he last visited.

Despite all the war and upheaval there was very little provision for those who got left behind such as those left unemployed due to the Industrial Revolution and enclosure as well as returning servicemen. The effect of this was felt widely as shown in ?The Female Vagrant?, the wife of a soldier forced to move countries etc and the increasing state of poverty they lived through. In a different culture ?The F...

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...t brought all the great things they had hoped for and things had not got any better, in many cases things had actually deteriorated.

Wordsworth and Coleridge seemed to be of a similar opinion to the general population throughout this whole period, they both began full of optimism for this time of change before slowly becoming more against it as shown in some of their poetry. ?Anecdote for Fathers? for example is a rather cynical poem focusing on a negative area of the human condition as a whole.

Lyrical Ballads very much reflects Wordsworth and Coleridge?s feelings on society at the time and to me they seem to be of the same opinions as the general population during that period. The poetry and indeed the Romantic Movement also illustrated the ?hour of feeling? well and therefore I believe that Lyrical Ballads captures the ?hour of feeling? very successfully.

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