Final Study Guide--Victorianism, 20th Century & After, etc
Final Study Guide--Victorianism, 20th Century & After, etc English 212
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This 5 page Study Guide was uploaded by UWSP Notetaker on Sunday December 13, 2015. The Study Guide belongs to English 212 at University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point taught by Robert Sirabian in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 30 views. For similar materials see English Literature II in Foreign Language at University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point.
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Date Created: 12/13/15
British Literature II: Romanticism to Present Study Guide for the Final Carry-over works that will be on the Final “Ode to Nightingale”— discusses the difference between moment of inspiration and moment of composition—two different mental states—one is conscious while the other is unconscious. Has a spontaneous overflow of powerful emotions. “Ode to the West Wind”—Spontaneous overflow of powerful emotions is a theme. Nature also plays a key role in this poem. The first three stanzas describe seasons (stanza 1: Autumn, stanza 2: Spring—discusses revolution which can be seen as a metaphor for spring where things that have died become something new, stanza 3: Summer). The shift occurs in stanza 4 and that’s where the presence of “I” begins in the poem. The key question of the poem is: what is the hidden power behind nature. The speaker-poet wishes for the wind to go through him so he can have a relationship with nature and see a change occur. “On Liberty” (by John Stuart Mill)—Focuses on the Industrial Revolution but touches on how individualism is important and is needed to create a worthwhile society. Robert Browning’s “Porphyria’s Lover”—depicts a power struggle between men and women and how the speaker (a man) needs to have control of Porphyria and how he wishes that she was his (having her all to himself/ his property/etc). “A Visit to Newgate”—Apart of Sketches by Boz which was published in 1836. Focuses on descriptive details of the Newgate Prison and infuses the subjects of the sketch with the observer’s (Dickens) feelings/associations. Rhetoric is infused in the sketch as well (a type of social criticism). Brings up the question about what the goal of prison is and whether that is to reform or to punish—part of Dickens’ interest in social issues. Focuses on three parts of the prison in detail, the women’s part of the prison, men of respectable class, and the Condemned Man. Dickens’ visit to the prison inspired parts of his other works like Oliver Twist, where the details of the prison mirror his description of Newgate. Key Concepts that you need to know: Dramatic Monologue—there is always a gap between the poet and the speaker (meaning that the speaker is not the poet in any way shape or form). There is also always a tension between judgment & sympathy or empathy of the speaker from the reader’s point of view. Dramatic Monologues also strongly emphasizes on performing rather than describing and the voice almost always betrays itself. (Work read in class: “Porphyria’s Lover”) Function/Theory of the Sketch (Dickens)—Kind of described above in the “Visit to Newgate” section. Sketches are supposed to create a dominant impression that takes on physical overtones. Always focuses on descriptive details of subjects from a distance. There is almost always an intimacy between the subject itself (descriptions) & the observer of the sketch (imagination & feelings). (Work connected to this: “A Visit to Newgate”) Separate Spheres Doctrine (The Women Question)—an idea about how men should be in charge of public affairs while women are in charge of domestic/home life. Many argued that it was the woman’s job to create an environment that was peaceful and men could take comfort in as well as be sheltered from the difficulties of modern life. This view was accepted by many, including men, antifeminists, and some feminists that wanted to prove how women could make special contributions to public life. (Works connected: Introduction pg. 1033-1034, “The Women of England: Their Social Duties and Domestic Habits” by Sarah Ellis, “Of Queen’s Gardens” by John Ruskin) Imperialism/Colonialism (Rhys)—this hasn’t been discussed much in class yet but here are some quick facts. Imperialism is a policy where a country’s power and influence is extended to other countries and places through diplomacy or military power. This can be connected to Colonialism because ideas of religion, violence, race, etc that colonists have come with them when they move from one country to another (in this case England) and they can force their ideals on the Natives. This can be seen in Rhys’ short story “The Day They Burned the Books” since Mr. Sawyer and other colonists seem to dislike the Natives of the West Indies because they are not white. (Connected works: “The Day They Burned the Books”) Picturesque/Entropy/Chaos Theory (Arcadia)—three theories that are at play in Arcadia. Picturesque or Classical Worldview says that everything is predetermined, regulated, and predictable. There are logical rules and a conservation of energy. The next theory is the Post-Newtonian Universe (Entropy) that is basically the 2 Law of Thermodynamics. It says that as one gets closer to disorder, there is less energy to work with. Another way of looking at it is that once an action is completed it can’t be undone. This can be related to communication because once something is said, especially something offensive, it cannot be taken back. The third theory can be found between the Picturesque and the Post-Newtonian Universe and that is Chaos Theory. Chaos Theory states that there is an underlying pattern in the chaos, or order within disorder. This is the theory where the unpredictable (Post-Newtonian) and the predetermined (classical) are mixed together. (Connected work: Arcadia) Quick Facts: 20 Century & After: Modern British Period Assumed to be from 1887-1945 The beginning of the period is arbitrary—has been connected with Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, her death, the end of the Edwardian Period, or the beginning of WWI The Ending correlates with the end of WWII There was a growth in public education/literacy Division in Art between popular culture & intellectual culture Position of Women—rights & identity Issues to be aware of: Gender—the position of women was a key debate during both The Victorian Period and in The Twentieth Century. In the Victorian Period, many said that it was the Women’s job to take care of the home and all domestic affairs (see Public Spheres Doctrine) while others argued that Women could do more than sew. Because of these ideals, marriage was seen as a high importance for many women, as well as men. Since Women needed to be in the home, education and independence wasn’t seen as thnecessity for women (one can assume). Women seemed to get more rights in the 20 Century. This issue can be explored more, this is just a brief overview. Works that discuss this: The Women Question--including “The Women of England: Their Social Duties and Domestic Habits” by Sarah Ellis, “Of Queen’s Gardens” by John Ruskin, “Cassandra” by Florence Nightingale, “The Queen’s Reign” by Walter Besant; “Porphyria’s Lover,” “The Day They Burned the Books,” Arcadia, etc. Individual & Society—According to John Stuart Mill, individuality is very important. He argues that individuality leads to creativity and diversity which creates a better society instead of one that would be filled with conformity. Which Mill believed the society was turning into because of the Industrial Revolution. Since work was viewed highly in the Victorian Society, it could cause problems for those that did not want to work in the factories and pursue other options. This can also be tied into what it means to human. Again much more can be said about this issue. Related works: “A Visit to Newgate,” “The Scholar Gypsy,” “The Speckled Band,” Never Let Me Go, Arcadia. The Use of/Meaning of the Past—Many works that were read in this half of the semester look into the past for answers to present day questions. The Romantic Period is referenced in “On Liberty,” Never Let Me Go, and Arcadia. Different writers looked into the past for different ways. For Mill, it was to talk about how individuality was once a big concern and how society should go back to viewing it that way. In both Never Let Me Go and Arcadia, the characters look into the past in order to make sense of things. Kathy reflects on her life and realizes how she always knew in some way or another that she was “different” from the rest of society. While Hannah and Bernard look into the past in Arcadia in order to advance in their own careers, not only that but in a way they are investigating how life was back then. (Ex. Did Lord Byron visit Sidley Park? What was the garden like? Who was the Hermit? etc.) Related works: “On Liberty,” “The Scholar Gypsy,” “Sailing to Byzantium,” Never Let Me Go, and Arcadia. Colonialism & Empire—In many ways, this is an issue of identity. Colonist are not native to the country they live in, yet because they live there they are not “English.” This creates a conflict of being viewed differently by not one, but two social groups. More could be said about this but it hasn’t been discussed in class yet. Related works: “The Speckled Band” and “The Day They Burned the Books.” Art—in many ways, art complements life. Some say that art showcases one’s soul and that is why it is viewed so highly. Many also appreciate it because it can live on forever, which is something that humans cannot do. This topic could be expanded on more as well. Works related: “Sailing to Byzantium” and Never Let Me Go. Poetry & Poetic Form/Writing Style—Form and meter can do a lot to reinforce themes in a poem or piece of writing. For instance, in “Ode to the West Wind” the structure of the Ode helps reinforce the ideas of the poet-speaker wanting the wind to go through him and carry his words to parts of the world that he cannot reach. The beginning three stanzas describe nature and then in the fourth stanza it shifts to focus on the poet-speaker and what he desires. This can be found in works other than poems, structure in Never Let Me Go and Arcadia also reinforce the works’ themes as well. Related works: “Porphyria’s Lover,” “Ode to the West Wind,” “The General,” “The Rear Guard,” “They,” “Glory of Women,” “Sailing to Byzantium,” Never Let Me Go, and Arcadia. Victorianism & Twentieth Century—there is a difference between Victorianism and Twentieth Century. In the Twentieth Century, there was a growth in education and a division in art. Not only that, but women finally started to get separate rights and develop a sense of identity. Victorianism always seemed to resist change while Modernism accepted it. This topic could also be explored more, related works include: the intros to both The Victorian Era and The Twentieth Century, On Liberty, “The Scholar Gypsy,” Never Let Me Go, “The Day They Burned the Books,” “Sailing to Byzantium,” Arcadia, etc. Other things to consider: Social Class, Love, Education. Practice Questions 1. How is the importance of art showcased in Never Let Me Go? What does Kathy believe is the reason for all the art that has to be done at Hailsham? How does this relate to what Miss Emily says at the end of the novel? 2. How is the conflict about colonists’ identity apparent in “The Day They Burned the Books”? What are some signs that the main character is dealing with this conflict? 3. “Ode to a Nightingale” has a theme of escapism. In 3-5 sentences describe what the poem is talking about escaping from and why the speaker wants to escape. Be sure to include text from the poem to help aid in your discussion. 4. How does Arcadia incorporate Newtonian, Chaos Theory, and Entropy into the play? How does it affect the play and how it is structured? What key importance does the final play? Also, which theory seems to stand out the most in the play and how does that tie into the message the play has? Your response should be a reasonable paragraph, at least half a page. 5. What was the Separate Spheres Doctrine? How was it viewed in Victorian Society? Was it mostly supported or unsupported? Describe what the SSD argued for and how writers incorporated it into their works. Remember “The Women Question” as you write your response. 6. How was World War I viewed during the Twentieth Century? Was there a difference in how it was viewed between the soldiers and the ones who stayed home? In a reasonable paragraph, describe how the war was viewed and how it created a conflict in England. Your response should be at least half a page.
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