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William Blake wrote of mind-forg'd manacles in his poem London. Discuss at least two works' views on the responsibilities of individuals and the responsibilities of society - Research Paper Example

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The poem, London, written by William Blake speaks about the city beyond the glorification of England’s marvelous history or the beauty of River Thames. It speaks about the negativities thriving within the city, the ‘plagues’, the ‘harlots,’ and the cries of children…
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William Blake wrote of mind-forg'd manacles in his poem London. Discuss at least two works' views on the responsibilities of individuals and the responsibilities of society

Download file to see previous pages... In fear of the revolution spreading at home and overthrowing the government, the authorities were concerned about the radical sentiments that were harboring in England. The public response was much radicalized followed by the authoritarian response of putting restrictions in places. Blake’s reference to “mind-forg’d manacles” points towards the repression of free thinking which was put in place to restrict the freedom of radical thinking or speech. London subtly talks about freedom, uninhibited freedom, which assists the common man. The relationship between the society and the individual is of vital importance in the poem as Blake writes to describe the society-individual relationship in the social context, as though a social contract exists between the two. Two works that represent the responsibilities of the individual and the society are Boys and Girls by Alice Munro and The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas by Ursula Le Guin. This paper will seek to explain the responsibilities of the entities, society and individual, in the light of works by Munro and Le Guin.
The manacles which Blake talks about is meant to represent a sort of physical restriction preventing free movement, which is used to explain the repressive laws that were implemented to inhibit the freedom of printing presses and publications. Most importantly, these manacles are placed on the mind to restrict free thinking to prevent any radical uprising. Very covertly, Blake has spoken about the social contract that exists between a society and an individual which directs the responsibilities of both entities so that they fulfill their expected tasks in a way that is beneficial for both. However, once the freedom of the common man is restricted by any means, there is sure to be a response. The society as an independent entity exerts pressure on the individuals, dwelling in its context, to show compliance to the agreed set of terms. Much of these implicit ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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