William Blake The Songs of Innocence and Experience 1

HI All,

We had a fabulous morning (despite the sound system glitches) on William
Blake’s “Contrary States” and then the way this idea is embedded and dramatized in The Songs of Innocence and Experience. 

Screen Shot 2019-08-07 at 2.22.53 pm

We talked about the ways in which these ideas have been taken up by Allen Ginsberg, by the Rock Group The Doors and by Patti Smith.  You can find links to their work in the pdf at the end of this blog.

We looked today especially at the two Nurse’s Songs, one presenting the state of containment and inner quiet, the other the state of jealousy and internal disquiet. We then forged on and in one class began to explore “The Tyger” and discovered the ways in which this poem partly mirrors the dark and the light worlds of the two nurses. In the second class we segued into “The School Boy” which exposes so sharply how not allowing children the space to develop organically can lead to crippling consequences in old age.

Here are the audios for this week’s lecture and the tutorials. For audio links please see the pdf below…


BlakeLectureWeek1 copy

Blog Topics for Next Week- due Friday 16th August.


CRITICAL: Can you summarize your sense of what the core of Ginsberg’s vision of Blake is in his “Sunflower Sutra”?

CRITICAL: Briefly discuss your sense of the significance of Patti Smith’s “My Blakean Year”

CREATIVE: In a poem or short prose piece describe a situation where you have either seen or experienced a dramatic different in the state of a human being and its impact on the world around.

CREATIVE: Who was Patti Smith? Find out and tell about her- create some links to her best Blakean songs.

CREATIVE: Find out about The Doors what kind of impact did their Blakean music have on the era in which they wrote.

REMEMBER: You are always permitted to create your own topic based on something that is presented in class or on something that what we have spoken of in class has triggered either in your own experience or your own memory.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: