“Kubla Khan:” A Description of Earthly Paradise

2075 words - 8 pages ✓ Expert Reviewed
VIEW DOCUMENT
Preview

“Kubla Khan” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge is said to be “one of the best remembered works of the Romantic period,” (Gray) and though this poem may seem speak deeply about the world, its conception was fairly simple: Coleridge had been reading a book about Kubla Khan in Xanadu (by a man named Samuel Purchas) before falling into a deep sleep induced by an opium mixture to which he had long since had an addiction. When he awoke from this drug induced stupor, he had apparently 200 to 300 lines of poetry in his head, but after writing the first three stanzas, was interrupted (and thus, we observe a shift in the poem at that point) by “a person from Porlock” (Brett 46-8) and could only remember one final bit of lines – the final stanza in “Kubla Khan.” (This interruption apparently making the poem: “what is perhaps the definitive statement on the obstruction and thwarting of the visionary genius.” [“Sparknotes”]) The poem itself is set in a fantastical place called Xanadu, where Kubla Khan’s beautiful palace is surrounded by lush greenery, and one fast-flowing river (its focus on nature being consistent with the Romantic poetry of the time.) Xanadu was a real place, but Coleridge’s poem mostly over exaggerates its beauty and depth. Other places mentioned in the poem, Mount Abora and Abyssinia may be references to other works, such as John Milton’s Paradise Lost, in which Abyssinian kings guarded their children at Mount Amara, a false paradise. (Stevenson 605-30) Another possible explanation of Coleridge’s choice of the setting is that he was creating the paradise in which he wanted to reside; (Coleridge was somewhat of a radical in politics; he, along with Robert Southey, was part of a movement called ‘Pantisocracy,’ which called for all men ruling equally and peacefully together. [Brett 46-8]) The utopia described in “Kubla Khan” could in fact be something of the utopia that Coleridge imagined for the world. As for when the poem is set, Coleridge is very unclear. Kubla Khan is a figure from the past, seeming to signify that this poem took place then. However, this poem is “A Vision in a Dream” – when do dreams take place? Coleridge’s leaving the reader confused here only assists him in setting up the bewilderment that lasts throughout the majority of “Kubla Khan.” The speaker in “Kubla Khan” can be said to be one who is either unsatisfied with the world, one who feels like an outsider in the world, much like Coleridge himself did. The speaker seems to be speaking to the world in general, or possibly to other astute minds who are also on the outside of society.
One of the dominant techniques present in “Kubla Khan” is contrasting imagery. Coleridge repeatedly compares the “bright” area surrounding the dome to the “lifeless” and “haunted” area surrounding the river. He continually repeats the phrases “pleasure-dome” and “sunny” when discussing the dome, whereas for his illustration of the surrounding river and caverns, “caves of ice” is most...

Find Another Essay On “Kubla Khan:” A Description of Earthly Paradise

Contrast Of "Kubla Khan" By Samuel Taylor Coleridge And "Lines Written A Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey" By William Wordsworth

525 words - 2 pages some contrasting traits. The presence of romanticism, the fact that both are written after the incident or dream took place, and the difference in reality and imagination are very important in analyzing these poems.One characteristic that "Kubla Khan" and "Lines Written a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey" have in common is the fact that both poems were written a significant amount of time after the incident or dream occurred...

Write A Sustained Close Analysis Of 'Kubla Khan' Having To Pay Attention To Both The Form And Content Of The Poem.

2595 words - 10 pages Samuel Taylor Coleridge's visionary Kubla Khan (1797-8) arose out of a narcotic induced dream. According to the poet's preface, he had consumed an effective amount of laudanum, and while reading from Purchas Pilgrimage travel book of...

The Composition And Publication History Of Samuel T. Coleridge's Kubla Khan

2560 words - 10 pages that “rarely has one seen so many unaccomplished projects and unfinished texts: his writings lie there like a field of ruins and fragments.” Although no original draft has been discovered from the fall of 1797, Jack Stillinger declares, it is not difficult to imagine an initial stage of the work consisting of the first thirty-six lines – the description of Kubla Khan the triumphant creator, or arrogant tyrant, decreeing his stately pleasure dome...

Contrast And Comparison Of Wordsworth's Tintern Abbey And Colderidges' Kubla Khan

1614 words - 6 pages and nature itself has grown from being a "wanderer through the woods", the same description used for the river. Colderidge sets the description of his poem on the banks of a river as well, but the river of this poem represents the imagination or creative flow of the poet. In the introduction of the poem, Colderidge describes how while in an opium induced dream, he has a vision of Kubla Khan commanding a place to be built. Upon awakening, he set...

Kubla Khan By Samuel Taylor Coleridge Asks The Ultimate Question - How Great Is The Energy Of Imagination, And Answers It, With Simple But Poignant Terms, Beware! Beware!

1323 words - 5 pages Kingdom of Imagination, Kubla Khan Be Thy Ruler"Kubla Khan" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge is one of the most celebrated and debated works, poems and other, from the Romantic period in English Literature. Coleridge wrote this piece in the period from 1797 to 1798. It is largely speculated that this verse was induced by a drug slumber during...

Exactly How Does Coleridge In 'The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner' And 'Kubla Khan' Show The Interrelatedness Between Mankind, Nature As Well As The Poetic Experience?

735 words - 3 pages 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 ...

The Importance Of A Good Job Description

1863 words - 7 pages analysis for the department or organization (depending on the size of the organization), review or create the job description, choose a recruiting plan, such as conducting your own candidate search or hiring a firm to seek potential candidates for you to interview, and discuss with other staff who are pertinent to the position needing to be filled, what they feel may make a candidate qualified to work along with them in the department. When an...

Geography: A Short Description Of Singapore

1846 words - 7 pages Brief Description Singapore started off as a multiracial country and its population was made up of a melting pot of different immigrants from different countries. Over the years, our medium of communication between the different races has been modified and peppered with numerous phrases from different languages from different dialects such as Hokkien and Malay. These phrases include “lah”, “waliao”, and “makan”. This Singaporean Slang is known...

Paradise - A Descriptive Narrative Of A Painting Taken To Life.

924 words - 4 pages brushstrokes of the painter's brush made it feel as if the clear blue waters of the ocean were calmly moving, and as if the clouds were drifting in the sky. The artist helped me to vividly envision myself at that paradise by using these techniques.The beach is a beautiful place to relax and "reset" yourself, as you watch the bright deep-orange of the beautiful sparkling sand, or the clear radiant blue sky, not forgetting the gleaming teals and light...

This Is A Technical Item Description Of A Fire Extinguisher.

884 words - 4 pages /Fire_fighting_foam" title="Fire fighting foam">AFFF) agent that expels a layer of foam when it is discharged through a nozzle. It acts as a barrier to prevent oxygen from feeding the fire. Although each class of fire has a specific extinguisher, the foam extinguisher is useful for both Class A and Class B fires; however, it is best suited for Class B.This description explains to the general homeowner...

A Description Of The Life Of An Architect

789 words - 3 pages learning the job description of an architect, I also found much information on the qualifications and requirements in order to become an architect.An individual must meet many qualifications and requirements in order to become an architect. One skill is the ability to work with others and at the same timealone on certain projects. Another is the ability to solve technical problems. Thirdly, one must have a certain level of artistic...

Other “Kubla Khan:” A Description of Earthly Paradise Essays

Kubla Khan: Seeking Paradise Essay

1651 words - 7 pages first stanza is abruptly shattered in the second. The speaker reveals that a hidden crack in the earth lies beneath Xanadu, Kubla Khan’s earthly paradise ("Explanation: 'Kubla Khan.'"). The chasm is spoken of with awe and wonder, for it is a thing of untouched and untainted glory. Coleridge’s fascination with nature shines through his poetry as he reveals his appreciation for such a natural power that is beyond the reach of mankind ("Explanation...

Cloeridge's Kubla Khan As A Sexual Perversion

1001 words - 4 pages Throughout the nineteenth century and even during the first quarter of the twentieth century "kubla Khan" was considered, almost universally, to be a poem in which stron feelings overwhelm any trace of sense. By far the most intriguing of questions asked about the most intriguing of poems is "what does it mean?" That is if, indeed...

The Cycle Of Creativity: A Psychoanalytic Perspective On Samuel T. Coleridge’S Kubla Khan

2357 words - 9 pages   In Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poem “Kubla Khan”, the narrator offers a host of fantastic imagery relating to a fictional “pleasure dome” constructed by the Mongolian emperor Kublai Khan. Coleridge professed ignorance of the poem’s meaning, saying only that it was a fragmented memory of a dream, but an analysis of the symbolic imagery of the poem through the lens of psychoanalytic interpretation will show that the poem is a study of the nature...

Critical Analysis Of Kubla Khan By S.T. Coleridge

1629 words - 7 pages In the poem Kubla Khan by Samuel Coleridge, language is used to convey images from Coleridge's imagination. This is done with the use of vocabulary, imagery, structure, use of contrasts, rhythm and sound devices such as alliteration and assonance.By conveying his imagination by using language, the vocabulary used by Coleridge is of great...