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"Victorians were pre-occupied by death." Discuss the reasons for this and how it reflected in the work of contemporary poets.

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Introduction

"Victorians were pre-occupied by death." Discuss the reasons for this and how it reflected in the work of contemporary poets. In the Victorian period in the era before anything such as antibiotics and National Health Service, it was very common for people living in close towns and villages to die at a young age. Tuberculosis was one of the common illnesses, which caused such deaths. This meant that infant mortality rate was high which made families, especially parents, very miserable and sombre. This reflected in the work of poets as people's morale was low. Britain was once described by Disraeli as "two nations- the rich and the poor". In saying this he described the massive difference that there was at the time between the rich and poor and how the rich lived in very clean and healthy conditions and the poor lived in such incredibly low conditions. Hygiene levels were low and the poor were restricted to such a small space to live and work and so health was issue as disease was passed around so easily. ...read more.

Middle

During this period a writer called Charles Darwin caused mayhem when a book was published by him called "The Origin Of The Species". Darwin's new theory of evolution challenged the Christians beliefs and they weren't at all happy with this. His new theory meant that all biblical evidence about creation was now wrong. His story was about how plants and animals have evolved through the ages and weren't each individually created. His second point stated that much effort is expended and much is wasted in order that evolution can progress. His third and final point states that the survival of the fittest has led to the progress of the human race, not the hand of God. This created such chaos because it was in conflict with people's belief in God. Victorian life revolved around Christianity and this innovation was at complete loggerheads with the very structure of that existence. The poems chosen for this study are two Christina Rossetti poems, 'Song' and 'Remember' to help prove the hypothesis as to why Victorians were pre-occupied by death. ...read more.

Conclusion

From the language of the poems chosen and from the evidence from the information about the Victorian period, There is a lot of proof that poets, in the time of the Victorian era, were influenced by what was going on in there surrounds, death. The poets from this period wrote about what was going on in society and the pictures that were in their heads. The high death rate and the living conditions inspired them to write about death and this is proved in the poems written by Christina Rossetti. It was hard for them not to write about things like death as it was such a common thing in their lives in the old and young. These living conditions and the fact that there was high infant mortality rate due to these conditions and poor medical care constantly made them think about life and this made them write about what was going on in their lives which was very frequently in connection with death. Sam Sharples ...read more.

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