Naru's Happy Travel
DOI : http://dx.doi.org/10.14354/yjk.2010.33.227
Blake, Yeats, and Bishop: The Speaker in the Poems of Children
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University of Rhode Island
원고접수일: 2010년 4월 20일, 수정일: 2010년 5월 15일, 게재확정일: 2010년 5월 30일
Abstract
Blake, Yeats, and Bishop wrote poetry about children from a child’s perspective, to make us take a closer look at our behaviors, thoughts, and society. Both Yeats’s “The Stolen Child” and Blake’s “The Chimney Sweeper” in Songs of Innocence juxtapose two different worlds, and the child in each poem is associated with the ideal world of our dream. For Blake, the other world as opposed to this world is characterized by perfection filled with love and compassion, which only God can create. Yeats’s “The Stolen Child,” on the other hand, is not characterized by good versus evil; the world we inhabit, though full of sufferings, has traces of beauty that God has given to humanity. Yeats makes us reminisce about our childhood when we were innocent, suggesting that the key to happiness in our daily lives can be found there. Bishop furthers the device of childhood reminiscence with an emphasis on human perceptions, making a psychological approach to her poems, “The First Death in Nova Scotia,” “Sestina,” and “Manners”; hence, the perspective of her child speaker is much more complicated so as to reveal human conditions. We have to find out what the actual world looks like in the poem by inferring what the child gives. Because the psychology of the child is not explained by anyone else in the poem, we place ourselves in child’s perspective and compare the experiences from an adult’s point of view. All the poems about children discussed in this paper are really about adults.


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