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Discuss BLAKE'S use of imagery an symbolism with detailed reference to specific poems...

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hibo | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 2) Honors

Posted July 12, 2010 at 12:09 AM via web

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Discuss BLAKE'S use of imagery an symbolism with detailed reference to specific poems in his SONGS OF INNOCENCE AND SONGS OF EXPERIENCE?

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cetaylorplfd | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted July 13, 2010 at 3:45 AM (Answer #1)

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In both versions of Blake's "The Chimney Sweeper," images of light and dark are used to characterize the children's experiences.  The version of this poem in Songs of Innocence portrays an angel that the boy Tom dreams about before he wakes to go with the other children to work.  In the final stanza of the poem, Tom is "happy and warm" after having had this dream although he is going to a dangerous job in the middle of winter.  The version in Songs of Experience on the other hand portrays a more grim picture of the realities of child labor.  The boy is described as a "little black thing among the snow" who cries because he is alone and suffering.  The color imagery in this version is related to death and stands in contrast to Blake's other version of "The Chimney Sweeper."

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