Alienation in the Urban Environment

Topics: Ray Bradbury, City, Urban area Pages: 3 (1161 words) Published: October 14, 2012
Outline how three of the texts we have studied so far explore a sense of alienation for individuals in an urban landscape. In T.S. Eliot’s “Preludes”, William Blake’s “London” and Ray Bradbury’s “The Pedestrian”, individuals are alienated in an urban environment. Alienation and isolation is evident through the contrast to monotony and the lone individuals standing out in the environment. Their existence is described and associated with a monotonous and bleak existence. Through language, alienation is emphasised by all three texts as they accentuate on the unchecked growth of urbanisation in cities and the consequences of uprising technology. . In “Preludes”, Eliot explores the idea of a monotonous existence and the alienating effect that it has on individuals due to the city and the urbanisation of it. In “London”, Blake identifies and conveys alienation through the oppression of the city and how it isolated people, and in “The Pedestrian”, Bradbury explores the concept of alienation due to the development of technology and the seemingly brainwashing effect it has. In his poem, “Preludes”, T.S Eliot explores the concept of a monotonous existence and the alienation of individuals in the process from the urban environment. This is shown through the repeated use of imagery as well as an accumulation of sordid, dirty images adding to the description of the city and the isolation and depressing atmosphere it causes. The recurrent use of, “withered leaves”, “vacant lots” and “lonely cab-horse”, accumulate to depict the notion of isolation and a dirty outlook on the city life. Such accumulation builds the idea of individual isolation being subsequent by the city. Similarly, Eliot employs imagery to convey the alienating effect of individuals caused by the urban environment and its monotonous routine. By Eliot metaphorically asserting, “with all its muddy feet that press” he shows the repeated idea of a monotonous existence in city living and the anonymity of...
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