September 17, 2012
During the early modern period of literature the shift of content changed dramatically from earlier time periods. It was no longer about society and countries as a whole, but the shift was greatly transformed into the individual. The idea of individualism is displayed through literary masterpieces in different ways, romanticism, as well as political philosophies and different individual perspectives. In Shakespeare’s work “Sonnets”, the ideal of romantic love, focusing on the individual, is prevalent; and displays a great picture of the individual. Comparison to previous works such as the love between Dante and Beatrice in “The Divine Comedy” and love triangle of Paris, Helen and Menelaos in Homer’s “Iliad”, with the romantic love that is displayed in Sonnets by Shakespeare; emphasis placed on the individual the changes specific literary aspects. Shakespeare “Sonnets” is sonnet about a young boy who declaring his love to his lover. The love is deep and passionate and displays a level of individualism through the passion that is shared by the young man. Metaphors are used throughout the sonnet in order to display a concrete image for the passion which is an abstract idea. “My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun/Coral is far more red then her lips’ red/If snow be white, why then her breasts are dun” (Sonnets p.1500). This comparison of the mistress’ qualities through the use of metaphors, displays Shakespeare’s individualistic point of view. It is as if the mistress is the only real object within the sonnet, which is brought to life through the details exposed through metaphoric placement. In “The Divine Comedy” by Dante Alighieri, the love between Dante and Beatrice is something more superficial. It is only through physical description does the reader gain knowledge about Beatrice. Dante and Beatrice had only encountered each other twice throughout Dante’s entire...
References: Damrosch, D., & Pike, D. L. (2007). The Longman Anthology of World Literature. New York, New York: Pearson Education, Inc.
SparkNotes. (2012). Iliad. Retrieved from http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/iliad
SparksNotes. (2012). Inferno. Retrieved from http://www.sparknotes.com/poetry/inferno/themes.html
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