Depictions Of The Literary Sublime Essay

1148 words - 5 pages

The representation of sublimity in William Wordsworth’s “I wandered lonely as a cloud,” Percy Shelley’s “To a Sky-Lark,” and Gerald Hopkins “As Kingfishers Catch Fire” is characterized by the beauty and forms of nature, the power of nature, and the use of metaphors in descriptive passages. They use the sublime to express the grandeur of nature and to describe specific objects of nature. The writers also employ the sublime as a way to communicate their imagination and interpretations of nature to the readers.
Wordsworth, Shelley, and Hopkins use the sublime in their literary works to interpret and express the aesthetics of nature. Wordsworth expresses the sublime beauty and forms of nature in “I wandered lonely as a cloud” by illustrating the nature scene using daffodils, clouds, stars, and waves. His personification of the daffodils, “Tossing their heads in sprightly dance,” (Wordsworth 12) distinguishes them from being just a simple organic plant to a vivid being that possesses an inner life. His personification of the daffodils creates a vibrant and beautiful illustration.
Shelley uses a sky-lark in his poem“To a Sky-Lark” to express the sublime beauty and forms of nature. The beauty of nature is developed from Shelley’s sublime imagination of the sky-lark’s song. He notes the beauty of the sky-lark’s song by implying that even rainbow clouds are not as beautiful as the melodies of the sky-lark’s song, “From rainbow clouds there flow not” (Shelley 33). Shelley relates the bird’s emotional state to the beauty of nature by regarding the happiness of the bird when the bird soars through the sky. He implies that the beauty and forms of nature contributes to the bird’s happiness, “What objects are the fountains /Of thy happy strain?” (Shelley 71-72). Shelley observes that because the bird does not have the same desires and concerns that hinder human contentment, it is these things that help us welcome the pure beauty of the bird’s song. .The song of the sky-lark is a form of beauty because it is pure and natural, unlike artificial sounds. Shelley illustrates this subject matter when he writes the skylark “Pourest thy full heart /In profuse strains of unpremeditated art” (Shelley 4-5).
Hopkins expresses the sublime of the beauty and forms of nature in “As Kingfishers Catch Fire” by envisioning kingfishers. His comparison of the kingfishers as pebbles tumbling down a well, “As tumbled over rim in roundy wells,” (Hopkins 2) notes the sublime of its beauty. This line restructures beautifully the impact of stones tossing down a well. The poem’s illustration of Hopkins’s idea of inscape depicts the kind of beauty that the poem can achieve about the sublime. Hopkins interprets the beauty of nature by implying that the kingfishers imitate everything that nature does, “Each mortal thing does one thing and the same” (Hopkins 5).
Wordsworth, Shelley, and Hopkins focus on the power of nature to symbolize the sublime. While wandering through the...

Find Another Essay On Depictions of the Literary Sublime

Discuss the concept of the 'sublime' advanced by 'Longinus' in "On the Sublime." How may we recognize it? What are its five sources? (Brief 'Works Cited' page included).

2054 words - 8 pages Upon reading Plato?s stance against poetry, it is refreshing to say the least to take into consideration Longinus?s praise of the art. In ?On the Sublime,? this author with the unknown identity lauds the art of sublimity, stating that it is an ?eminence and excellence in language; and that from this, and this alone, the greatest poets and writers of prose have attained the first place and have clothed their fame with immortality.? Longinus

Critically analyse the treatment of the sexually sublime in 'Zofloya' and 'The Monk'

1621 words - 6 pages In Gothic novels sublime sexuality is an out of control element that drives the affected characters to destruction. This is especially true of Lewis's The Monk and Dacre's Zofloya. Both novels stress fearless sexuality and expressions beyond the limitations of everyday life. Dacre's protagonist is a mother hating triple murderess who dreams of sexual congress with a demon of colour. Whilst Lewis's monk is a corrupt, murdering, sexual predator

Some Notes Concerning Affections and the Sublime in the Work of Jonathan Edward

4646 words - 19 pages Some Notes Concerning Affections and the Sublime in the Work of Jonathan Edward Jonathan Edwards’s attention to the separation of the body from the soul combined with his efforts to account for the spirit of revivalism during the “Great Awakening” implicates the sublime as both a rhetorical tool and psychological experience that, in either case, foregrounds the relationship between an individual’s perception of the self and his or her

Discuss how Varying Depictions of Women in Art Reflect the Time and Place in which the Artworks were created.

1613 words - 6 pages Women in ArtDiscuss how Varying Depictions of Women in Art Reflect the Time and Place in which the Artworks were created.Art has depicted women in many ways, often reflecting the culture and experiences of the time. Radical movements in artworks themselves have often, also, fueled the change in perception of women. Art has been critical to the development of culture and has been a way to express ideas and emotions in a complex and picturesque

Literary Insperation of the Holocaust

2450 words - 10 pages Literary Insperation of the Holocaust Why do the survivors of such a tragic event such as the Holocaust want to remember those horrifying times by writing about memories that most people would only want to forget? I will show, Weisel has talked about, and as others have written, that the victims of the holocaust wrote about their experiences not only to preserve the history of the event, but so that those who were not involved and those

The Authors of the Literary Fairy Tale

1272 words - 5 pages The Authors of the Literary Fairy Tale When asked to name authors of fairy tales, most people now (if they knew at all) would answer the Grimm Brothers or Charles Perrault, and perhaps Hans Christian Andersen. Yet

The best expression of the Thai literary

508 words - 2 pages Literature and Drama.The best expression of the Thai literary genius is found in poetry. Thai verse contains a great variety of meters, and the tonal quality of the language provides an additional metrical device not available in non-tonal languages. Tonal measure usually takes the place of rhyme, although in at least one form, the Kap, both are employed. Thai poetry is unlimited with regard to subject, but perhaps the best known and most

Depictions of death: Beautiful and Heroic. "Laocoon and His Two Sons" by Hagesandros vs. "Fall of the Damned" by Peter Paul Rubens

1077 words - 4 pages have chosen. Death is a common theme in art. These two pieces take death to a higher level by appealing to the audiences' emotions through there depictions being extremely beautiful and heroic. Anyone can see the pain and suffering in the subjects, and sympathize with them, as well as marvel at the supreme beauty of the artworks. These two pieces, "Laocoon and his Two Sons" & "Fall of the Damned", have influenced art for centuries, and will continue to, because of the truthful representation of man as heroic and beautiful... even while facing death!

The Beginnings of a National Literary Tradition

3499 words - 14 pages individuality combined with judgement informed by the highest standards. According to L.R. Early Lampman "felt he was in a literary void and was deeply interested in the prospects of Canadian poetry"(137). Lampman contributed to the Canadian sense of national literature through many instruments. His depictions of the seasons and their extremes and his use of Canadian flora and fauna eased Canadians into poetry that the nation could relate to and

Welcome To The World of Literary Theory

1244 words - 5 pages Welcome To The World of Literary Theory Literary theory. Just the name sounds boring, ancient, and predictable. The concept may make you cringe or even hide behind an education filled with far less intimidating subject matter. As a student you picture some tenured teacher attempting to enlighten you with his or her knowledge of authors who have been long gone or nearly there. You think of endless hours slaving over an anthology of stories

Literary elements in Lord of the Flies

1034 words - 5 pages harder to achieve as fear and superstition infiltrate their minds. At first, the boys appear to be getting along, by the end the tribe have split and the boys become savages. The events of the novel are riddled with literary elements that attach ideas and themes that help to deepen their meaning, some of these elements include symbolism, imagery and irony. The Lord of the Flies also explores psychological theories such bystander effect and the

Similar Essays

The Pearl: Depictions Of Life Essay

787 words - 3 pages The Pearl: Depictions of Life      In John Steinbeck's The Pearl, a destitute pearl diver finds a giant pearl with which he hopes to buy peace and happiness for his family. Instead, he learns that the valuable pearl can not buy happiness but only destroy his simple life. Throughout the fable, there is a constant theme woven through the characters and setting which encompasses the struggle among social classes to

Analyze Lyotard's Reworking Of The Kantian Sublime.

2559 words - 10 pages According to Kant in The Critique of Judgement (1790) 'the sublime moves, whilst the beautiful charms.' Kant's theory of the sublime relates strongly to that of the sublime in nature, however Kant doesn't see that it is the object in nature, which is purely sublime, but rather our minds superiority to reason over the 'unpresentable' in nature. Lyotard whilst developing and reworking this Kantian model, stipulates rather that the sublime is not

Burke’s Sublime In O’dell’s Island Of The Blue Dolphins

1512 words - 7 pages the power of the Ocean. The Ocean is depicted throughout the novel as something enormous and powerful. The way the Ocean is seen demonstrates an example of the Burkeian Sublime. According to Burke, the Sublime is an experience that comes from authority and power. A common example for the Burkeian Sublime is looking at the power of mountains. Mountains are Sublime because they’re large in size, and have the power to kill people. Therefore, through

Depictions Of Women: The Great Gatsby & “Portrait D’une Femme”

1609 words - 7 pages of women of the 1920’s made the pieces unforgettable and luminous. Works Cited Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York, NY: Scribner, 1925. Print. Pound, Ezra. “Portrait D’une Femme. ” 1912. Print. Schoesler, Matthew. "Pound's Portrait d'une Femme." The Explicator 65.3 (2007): 162+. Literature Resource Center. Web. Feb. 2014. Wershoven, Carol. "Insatiable Girls." Child Brides and Intruders. Bowling Green: Bowling Green State University Popular Press, 1993. 92-99. Rpt. in Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism. Ed. Linda Pavlovski. Vol. 157. Detroit: Gale, 2005. Literature Resource Center. Web. Feb. 2014.