How Does Coleridge In 'the Rime Of The Ancient Mariner' And 'kubla Khan' Show The Interrelatedness Between Mankind, Nature And The Poetic Experience?

735 words - 3 pages

Coleridge expresses many thoughtful and rather intense ideas in his poetry, throughusing either peculiar or common images of all forms of nature ie human,environmental or supernatural. His poetic expression is unique in its use ofextraordinary imagery and transition of mood yet he what he creates usuallyconforms to numerous literary techniques. The recurring theme in many of his poemsis that of man's harmony with nature, and this idea, combined with his bizarre andeven eccentric poetic expression provides a basis for both 'The Rime of the AncientMariner' and 'Kubla Khan'.Mankind, firstly, is explored in both poems by placing the human nature in situationswhere perhaps instinct acts before reason. In RAM, the ancient mariner kills thealbatross not for need or in distress, or for any reason that mariner can deduce theresult. He has unknowingly taken on a huge burden, and the quest begins to extractall the rash impulsiveness of mankind. The mariner now must search for moral,spiritual and internal rationality, and this goal is expressed in the poem as a type ofblessing or relief which he must earn. In 'Kubla Khan', Coleridge expresses man'ssocial instinct to conform and belong to a group. This also relates to the creation ofrituals and rules by the human-being and the obeying of the cycle of life to death,again and again. The running theme of freedom and release for man is emphasised inboth poems, escaping from criticism, in the case of KK, and from blame and regret,in RAM. They both explore the tendency to be impulsive for reasons accumulatedthrough the traits of human and social instinct, in contrast to that obtained naturally.An example of this purely natural expression is that of the senses. KK is anextremely sensual and sexual poem, appealing to maybe the animalistic part of thehuman rather than to the section which recognises its reason and depth. In RAM, themariner is subjected to the elements of nature, where all his senses are exposed toextreme environmental lengths. His instinct strays away from that based on hisposition amongst the dead men and the burden he has acquired. He becomesextremely sensitive in his sight, hearing, sense of touch, smell and taste and it is thenthat the mariner becomes inharmonious with nature, recognising its amazingtransformation power and beauty.The...

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