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文学场的组织功能探析:以布莱克诗歌〈伦敦〉为例

论文查重   作者:谢楠   时间:2011-03-16    阅读:


  文学场的组织功能探析:以布莱克诗歌〈伦敦〉为例

  文/谢楠

  1. Introduction

  The literary field theory of Pierre Bourdieu, adopting the sociological angle of view, reckons that “the interpretation of literary phenomena must combine the context, the personality of the author, social background and cultural capital of the literature work by placing the literature in a certain field, which is also known as literary field. In the theory, Bourdieu shows how “literary practices have become constituted in a social set of agents (authors, publishers, critics) and of rules that forms a specific space.”(Bourdieu 395) The space, the so-called literary field that is created by the author, has its own distinguish structure, and is considered to be a system that organizes all the literary elements. And this certain sort of organizational function is known as the internal function of literary field. Due to the organizational function of the literary field, all the literary elements of the literary works, such as images, linguistic experiences, and even the themes of them can be united as a complete whole; due to the organizational function of the literary field, the literary works, endowed with tons of essence of its individual elements, accomplish many splendid, sparkling, household legends.

  William Blake, as a visionary poet and an illustrator of the Romantic period, is considered one of the major poets of English literature. His artistic ingenuity and the passion for originality and imagination nourish his creation of a unique writing style which embraces both visionary and auditory images and present a flawless fusion of visual art, auditory art and poetry. London, one of Blake’s lyric ballads, is regarded as the “mightiest brief poem” by famous critic Oliver Elton. The poem serves as a terrific material to start my discussion.

  The paper makes a research on the organizational function of Blake’s literary field, in terms of the theory of the literary field and the unique writing style of Blake, the paper focuses on the aesthetic performance of the visual and auditory images which are weaved by the poem as well.

  2. The Organization Function of the literary field of London

  Many writers view the city of London as an obstacle to artistic inspiration; “the crowds, unsanitary conditions, corruption, crimes, and pollution, they argue, obscure the nature beauty of the world”. (Kirszner and Mandell 90)While William Blake holds a quite opposite sentiment, considering that the aspects of city life provide unique insights into the human condition. His poem London, can be interpreted as a literary field in its own entirety. And the certain literary field, featuring in organizing all the poetic elements in the poem, such as voice, diction, imagery, figures of speech, sound, form and theme, makes the poem as a united whole that carries profound meanings and mirrors the superb artistic technique of the poet himself.

  2.1 The Organizational Function of Gathering Similar Images

  William Blake, a republican, was against the monarchy and probably the aristocracy who supported them. Therefore, with a grim, dull or even ugly mood in the poem, the literary field of London that was created by him pervades such an overwhelming atmosphere of great anguish and suffering. The poem, adopting a sad and sorrowful tone, writes ironically of the images in order to demonstrate the condemnation of Man’s lack of freedom and the causes of this lack. Various of images, therefore, whatever they are closely knitted or relatively irrelevant, are gathered by the organizational power of the literary field.

  Taking those ironic images in the poem London, for instance, the poet utilizes “the chartered street” and “the chartered Thames”, which implicates that the public facilities and the natural landscape are ridiculously granted to those people who have superior power. Obviously, street and river belong to different categories. But because they shed light on some similar connotation, they are absorbed by the literary field to show that London at that time was such a place where everything has unfair rules or boundaries. In the following lines, Blake uses the image of “the mind-forged manacles”. As another inapposite image, it is assembled in the literary field to reflect that the freedom of people’s thinking and actions have been taken away.

  A close resemblance occurs in the diction of the poem. It is said that Blake has his own version of Christianity, so the literary field of his poem calls some Biblical words together, like “harlot” and “new-born infant”.

  2.2The organizational Function of Composing the Integrated Internal Structure

  Dedicating his spirit to the poem, William Blake uses his language and the unique writing style to condense experience into an intensely concentrated literary field, with each sound, each word, each image, and each line carrying great weight. Benefiting from the miraculous power of the poem’s literary field, the internal structure as consummately fulfilled.

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