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It’s A Hard Enough Life (An Analysis Of Alfred Tennyson’s Life Influences On His Poetic Work)

1086 words - 5 pages

Being rich and famous doesn’t mean that you are happy. In fact some of the poorest people in the world can be the happiest. For one, money doesn’t buy happiness; happiness is sought through a person’s feelings. In the life of Alfred Lord Tennyson, even though he holds expanses in the rich world, his life is ruled by unhappiness. According to the website, “Poets.org” Alfred’s early life was consumed with grief and anxiety. His father suffered frequent mental breakdowns due to heavy alcoholism. While Alfred’s brother often had violent fights with his father and was later confined to an insane asylum, while another one of Alfred’s brothers became an opium addict. These factors in Alfred’s ...view middle of the document...

The second piece of poetry that Tennyson wrote, “The Lady of Shalott” can be taken from the fact that women at the time were pushing for equal rights as men had. The poem can be summarized as a woman stuck in a castle weaving her fabrics in which she has a curse put on her that results in death when she looks out the window. A handsome man comes trotting by on his horse in which the woman looks out the window and sees the handsome man in which she feels the need to go and see. She leaves the castle and rows her boat across the river to him, and when she finally gets there she is dead from the curse. (Tennyson, The Lady of Shalott, Pages 963-968) According to the website “Women’s Status in Mid-19th Century England” it was around the time of the mid 19th century and in the 1860’s where women’s rights were made in more view of the public. It was this same time that Alfred Tennyson published his poem, “The Lady of Shalott”. The context between the poem and women’s rights shows that in the poem, the woman is basically imprisoned inside of the castle, such as when women weren’t allowed out in public without a man.
Tennyson’s last poem, “Ulysses” doesn’t so much deal with any person problems that he has himself, but more about the country of Great Britain itself. According to the website, “Listverse” the British Empire was the largest empire in human history. It covered a quarter of the worlds land and had control over half a billion people. According to John Wilson in his works entitled “Noctes Ambrosiance” in which he states, “The sun never sets on the British Empire.” In this meaning, the British Empire covered so much of the world that somewhere in the empire the sun was shining. The poem, “Ulysses” basic meaning is Ulysses being an old man but still wanting to travel. (Tennyson, Ulysses, pages 971-973) Tennyson is making to comparison to Ulysses...

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