A Text Cannot Help but Be a Product of Its Time

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‘A text cannot help but be a product of its time.’ A text always reflects the time in which it was created. It always at least contains some elements, if not none. The poems by Charles Baudelaire and Viktor Khlebnikov reflect the period they belong to through the use of distinguishable elements such as nature imagery, aesthetic experience, and change define the period the poems have come from, as well as the reactions towards the events that have happened in the society and time. Be Drunk by Charles Baudelaire is clearly a product of the Romantic Era, which was a reaction to the Industrial Revolution. The use of nature imagery and an aesthetic vibe in this poem reflects the characteristics of this era. ‘..Green grass of a ditch..ask the wind, the wave, the star, the bird..’ The nature personified exemplifies imagination and the love of nature. It makes it seem as though the objects are alive, and as though the reader could achieve the beauty and doings of nature. This conflicts man-made objects which is what brang out the Industrial Revolution and is a significant part of the Romantic reaction to it. ‘So as not to be the martyred slaves of time’ expresses an attempt to go against something that cannot be accomplished. It also expresses the struggle for one’s liberty or freedom from society. This struggle for reaching one’s unappeasable desire which cannot be attained is individualism, a clear feature that distinguished the Romantic Era. Because the Romantic Era contained many individualists, who valued self-reliance and independence, they often led a solitary life rather than a life connecting with society. This is linked with this poem- ‘in the mournful solitude of your room’. The poet could be mourning for what society has become, or the fact that he is always in his room by himself. This era was also about aesthetic experience- the appreciation of beauty, art, taste, and the senses of the body. ‘..Be drunk! Be continually drunk! On wine, on poetry or on...
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