An Imaginary Life and Wordsworth

Topics: An Imaginary Life, Ovid, Romanticism Pages: 4 (1360 words) Published: January 18, 2013
It might be said
In both David Malouf’s novel ‘An Imaginary Life’ and William Wordsworth’s poems, it is palpable how diverse times and cultures influence the significance of the association humanity can have with the natural world. There are four key techniques which are portrayed by both writers, portraying of characters, symbolism, imagery and concern; these techniques are presented through themes. The portraying of characters is shown through the theme of finding oneself in nature, symbolism finding hope in nature, imagery is emphasized through the indication that it is easier to connect with nature as a child and concerns towards the writers are accentuate through the theme of drifting away from nature. These themes help the writers highlight their techniques to the readers. Although both writers share the same views on nature, their context allows them to differ greatly from one another. Both Malouf and Wordsworth write through certain characters, Malouf wrote in his novel ‘An Imaginary Life’ through the character Ovid and Wordsworth through first person. An imaginary Life was written in a post-romantic era and tells the story of the Roman poet Ovid's exile from Rome - the centre of culture at the time - to the bleak wilderness at Thomis, near the Black Sea. Here we have a person absolutely dependent on language - a poet - forced to live in a world where the landscape, the language, all is alien him. Eventually, with the assistance of the Child, a youth reared in the wild, Ovid comes to accept his new surroundings. He does this by using the power of language and imagination to construct this new world for himself in a way that is meaningful. His finding of a familiar flower, a poppy, in the wilderness, evokes for him the magical power of language to construct human reality. This reflects his personal views on nature as he himself chose to leave society and become a part of and appreciate nature. Wordsworth on the other hand wrote in first person, making...
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