The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald written in the Jazz age of 1920s America, and Sonnet from the Portuguese written by Elizabeth Barrett Browning composed in the wake of Romanticism, although the two texts were composed in two distinct time period both texts are influenced by their varying contexts in their portrayal of the enduring human concerns. Both authors explore the universal human concerns of love, hope and mortality through the use of various language features such as metaphors, use of irony and the subversion of the established values of their time. Elizabeth Barrett Browning employs the Petrarchan form and male linguistics to challenge the tradition of courtly love whereas Fitzgerald critiques the hedonistic lifestyle, and the fall of the American dream to illustrate the illusion of love and hope.
During the Victorian Era people were still very religious and EBB was no different and is reflected in her poetry. She implies that love, if it more than merely attraction and desire, must have a spiritual element. It also further reflects the value of Victorian ideology in its religious affirmations and patriarchal attribution of masculine power. This is especially shown In Sonnet 43 when she writes “as men strive for Right.. as they turn from Praise.” She also writes how their love will continue after their deaths into the afterlife, “I shall but love thee better after death.” This suggests her deep passion for her love, and how it will carry on. Even in Sonnet 32 where she is very doubtful, the sonnet still shows spiritual, soul-bonding power of ideal love as the poem ends with the musical and spiritual analogy that, together, they create ‘perfect strains’ and their ‘great souls, at one stroke, may do and coat.’
As a person like EBB who experienced melancholy, love was very unexpected for her and thus created a lot of doubt, but nonetheless accepts the power of transformation that love brings. In Sonnet 32 she has feelings of inadequacy shown by...
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