Fearful Symmetry
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Fearful Symmetry : A Study of William Blake

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Description

This brilliant outline of Blake's thought and commentary on his poetry comes on the crest of the current interest in Blake, and carries us further towards an understanding of his work than any previous study. Here is a dear and complete solution to the riddles of the longer poems, the so-called "Prophecies," and a demonstration of Blake's insight that will amaze the modern reader. The first section of the book shows how Blake arrived at a theory of knowledge that was also, for him, a theory of religion, of human life and of art, and how this rigorously defined system of ideas found expression in the complicated but consistent symbolism of his poetry. The second and third parts, after indicating the relation of Blake to English literature and the intellectual atmosphere of his own time, explain the meaning of Blake's poems and the significance of their characters.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 488 pages
  • 140 x 216 x 33.02mm | 567g
  • New Jersey, United States
  • English
  • Revised ed.
  • 0691012911
  • 9780691012919
  • 195,742

Back cover copy

This book offers an explanation of Blake's thought and a commentary on his poetry. No effort has been made to deal at all adequately with Blake's biography or with his work as painter and engraver: a study of his relation to English literature is primarily what has been attempted.
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Table of contents

PART ONE - THE ARGUMENT 1. The Case against Locke 3 2. The Rising God 30 3. Beyond Good and Evil 55 4. A Literalist of the Imagination 85 5. The Word Within the Word 108 PART TWO - THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE SYMBOLISM 6. Tradition and Experiment 147 7. The Theif of Fire 187 8. The Refiner in Fire 227 9. The Nightmare with Her Ninefold 269 PART THREE - THE FINAL SYNTHESIS 10. Comus agonists 313 11. The City of God 356 12. The Burden of the Valley of Vision 404 GENERAL NOTE: BLAKE'S MYSTICISM 431 NOTES ON THE ILLUSTRATIONS 433 NOTES TO THE TEST 435 INDEX 451
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Review Text

This book offers an explanation of Blake's thought and a commentary on his poetry. No effort has been made to deal at all adequately with Blake's biography or with his work as painter and engraver: a study of his relation to English literature is primarily what has been attempted.
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Review quote

"A magnificent, extraordinary book... Several great poets have written of Blake, but this book is the first to show the full magnitude of Blake's mind."--The Spectator
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Rating details

635 ratings
4.28 out of 5 stars
5 50% (320)
4 33% (212)
3 12% (77)
2 3% (19)
1 1% (7)
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