What are some points against the statement "Lord Ullin's daughter was right in her decision to defy her father"?

Expert Answers
beateach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the ballad “Lord Ullin’s Daughter” by Thomas Campbell, the daughter defies her father by eloping with the man she loves. Was she right to do this? Considering it leads to her and her lover's death, she probably made the wrong decision. When this poem is analyzed, it is often argued she should have been allowed to marry for love. Unfortunately, dueling Scottish clans were the norm at the time, and Lord Ullin’s daughter was cognizant of that.

She was aware her father and her lover were heads of separate Scottish clans, and knew her father would never approve of their relationship. When she leaves with “the chief of Ulva's isle,” she knows her father’s men will follow them, and they will kill her lover on the spot if the two are caught. Therefore, she puts her lover's life in jeopardy by defying her father’s wishes. One could interpret this as selfishness on her part.

Two lives could have been spared if Lord Ullin's daughter chose to obey her father, but would she and her lover have found happiness without each other?

jameadows eNotes educator| Certified Educator

After disobeying her father and running away with the chieftain, Lord Ullin's daughter is pursued by her father's men. To keep ahead of these men, she and her beloved must go across Lochgyle in the midst of a storm. She thinks that if her father's men find her and her lover, they will kill him. The boatman agrees to take the couple across the raging loch because he pities Lord Ullin's daughter, and they depart across the waves and whitecaps. Lord Ullin is so angry that his daughter would rather cross the stormy sea than face her father. The storm is so strong that it causes the demise of Lord Ullin's daughter and her lover. In the end, the Lord is bereft that he has lost his daughter. The father's reaction signifies that the father is sympathetic to his daughter, and if the daughter would have waited a while without running away then the father might have agreed to her marriage to her beloved.