Values and Perspectives of Different Time Periods

Topics: F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Victorian era Pages: 3 (1207 words) Published: October 14, 2011
Changes in time and context bring about alterations in the attitudes and ideologies of a society. These new alterations create a changed belief system containing many different values and perspectives of the individuals within a society, and in many cases these values and perspectives often expose flaws of both the individuals and the structures of that society. Through the comparison of “Sonnets from the Portuguese” extracted from “Aurora Leigh and other poems”, written by Elizabeth Barret Browning (E.B.B), exposing social standards from the Victorian era, and the novel “The Great Gatsby” written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, exposing the social greed and expectations within the Jazz Age, the values and perspectives of different time periods are exposed as being at the mercy of their contextual concerns. The Victorian age, 1837-1901, was a period in time when many different artistic styles, literary schools, as well as social, political and religious movements blossomed. With religion blooming rapidly during this time, many poets made constant reference to a higher power. The frequent mentioning of God is evident in E.B.B’s sonnets as she exposes the innocent faith in religion. Repetition of this use of metonymy such as E.B.B’s strong belief in God allowing her love to last for eternity; “-and if God choose, I shall love thee better after death”, demonstrates how prevalent religion was in giving meaning to the lives of people during this time. The Victorian era was also a time where status quos were of the utmost importance, which led to the upper class having certain privileges, while the lower class lived with only fundamental decencies. The rhetorical question used in the line “And hold the torch out—to cast light on each?”, describes E.B.B’s uncertainty and hesitance towards the love she feels towards Robert Browning due to the social reforms restricting her to express her feelings in public. The restrictions of femininity through the Victorian morality are...
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