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Drawing: Raniya Sameer (1313242)

Srividya M (1313266) presents analysis of poems: The Cry of the Children The summary of The Cry of the Children by Elizabeth Barrett Browning is an instance of a problematic piece that speaks volumes about the down trodden state of child workers. As a matter of fact, the idea of The Cry of the Children had its roots when Elizabeth Barrett Browning heard the cries of children who were made to work in mines and factories under very surprising circumstances. The singular style used in the poem is a trademark of Elizabeth Barrett Browning which had been effective to portray the thoughts and disillusionment-concurring themes that she had been dealing with in her political poems. The poem starts with the speaker who is asking the children to go and play, which is usually expected of a child. Surprisingly, they refuse. The poet uses irony here to project the idea of disillusionment which occurs as a recurring motif in the poem. It forms one of the central ideas of The Cry of the Children and it continues to play with the minds of the readers especially when discussing issues like that of religion. The theme of The Cry of the Children is also concerned with child labour and hence slowly starts and remains with the idea of whether adults would have liked to see themselves in a similar situation. the poem revolves around the children who have contributed to this poem. The issues receives “fuel to the fire” as Elizabeth Barrett Browning touches upon religion as well as other conterversial topics. Elizabeth Barrett Browning reserves her sentiment for the children who are made to work in factories and have part aways with their childhood and are deprived of all that things that other children can do. “Let them feel that his cold metallic motion | Is not all the life God fashions or reveals” (lines 93-94). In other words, she strikes a sad chord with her words trying to convey that people shouldn’t have any disillusionment towards religion. The poem goes on to dug deep as it explores past the general issue of child labor and draws up a sharp contrast with the working conditions of the adult and adverse situations that they have to face day after day.

Sonnet to Liberty: The opening line suggests that he does not have an emotional attachment with his fellow man, may be due to his homosexuality, but on further reading, one might discern a strong thoughts onthe class struggles of all man. Liberty, according to Rand, is defined as the freedom of individual decision, individual choice, individual judgment and individual initiative; it means also the right to disagree with others. A common Marxist and Liberal [viz: On Liberty] interpretation may generally lead one to believe that everyone is oppressed by the capitalist, economic system, both of which have strong influence the status quo and social policy, and therefore both common man is subjugated by the one system. It is an interesting idea that - whether or not fully associated to this particular poem a perversion (as homosexuals once were) and one then considered a normal citizen can be alienated in similar ways.

London 1802: The poem begins with a plaintive call to John Milton (1608-1674), a respected English poet, and one of Wordsworth's great influences. The speaker broods about the fact that Milton isn't around anymore, since, as he sees it, England needs a guiding voice. The speaker flat-out condemns the state of the nation, saying that it's a stagnant swamp, and that the English people have forgotten all the things that used to make them so glorious, including religion, military might, and literature. The speaker worries that the Englishmen of his day are too selfish and wishes Milton could return and give the nation a good old-fashioned talk. The poet is certain that Milton could inspire England to greatness once again, and mould its habitants into noble creatures. The second half of the poem dwells on Milton's high points; the speaker gets all swoony about Milton's writing, and shows its divinity by using celestial imagery. Not only is Milton's writing admirable, so was his character. The man could do no wrong. The speaker goes over bored that the all-around loveliness that was Milton, and ends the poem by praising the deceased poet's humility.

Drawings : Raniya Sameer (1313242)

The Queen and Her Fashion

- Oindrila Mukherjee (1313263) Victorian Fashion includes trends and fashion which were prevalent in British culture throughout the reign of Queen Victoria roughly from 1837 A.D. to 1901 A.D. This period saw several changes in fashion and it was an amalgamation of various styles. The expansion of the British economy was a major contributor to this. Cloth was mainly made in factories and this made it cheaper. As a result, women’s dresses were usually very elaborate. Victorian fashion was, to a large extent was shaped by the Queen herself. In the 1840s, women generally wore full skirts with wide puffed sleeves. Their dresses were pale and simple with intricate flower trimming. Corsets and chemises were mandatory under gowns. These were worn to give the body an aesthetic shape. Waistlines were tightly shaped. Gowns often had a low shoulder line and were worn with shawls and short gloves. However, women’s apparel was characterized by high collars in the last years of the Victorian Era. Hats are a central part of Victorian Fashion. They were an essential accessory of a woman’s dress. They were available in varying shapes and sizes. They were wide-brimmed, decorated with beautiful ribbons and plumes of different birds. The leghorn hat was supposedly the most romantic hat. In other words, hats had become a style statement among women. Gloves, Mantles, Brooches, Scarves, etc. were also used as accessories. Use of umbrellas and fans were also popular. Shoes, during this time, had squared or pointed toes and were worn along with heels. In this way, Queen Victoria exerted a certain amount of influence on women’s fashion at that time.

Drawing: Raniya Sameer (1313242

Nithi Harsha (1313262) presents: Victorian Jokes Why are cats like unskilled surgeons? Because they mew-till-late and destroy patients (patience). Why is Moses the most wicked man that ever lived? He broke all the commandments at once. Life is short - a four letter word. Three quarters of it is a 'lie' and half of it an 'if. Question: What's the difference between Joan of Arc and a canoe? Answer: One is Maid of Orleans and the other is made of wood.

Drawing: Raniya Sameer (1313242)

Letter from the past:

(WOMEN STATUS) To the women of the modern era, We see that things have started to look up for women, in the contemporary world. Sure, you still have problems but things are looking up aren’t they? Women are no longer, on the foot path. At least a huge chunk of the world have started to see you in par with men, you have voting rights, property rights.. life must be good. Let us take you back to the past and give you an idea about how things were for us. We had her majesty, Queen Victoria as the monarch of Great Britain, but even with a woman on throne, we were privileged in no way apart from a highly defined fashion sense. We were allowed on the work force, yes but we were not empowered with property rights or right to sue. We had no voice in the government as we had no right to vote. Modern women like yourselves, might see marriage as a romantic institution in a sweep-me-off-my-feet manner, but let us assure you; that was not the case for us. The moment we got married we forfeited all our property, our earnings, our education, our right to free speech to our husbands. Man and wife, become a common entity after marriage with the only stake holder who can represent the entity. We were not only enslaved economically, but sexually as well. Our bodies didn’t belong to us, it belonged to our husbands, to use as they wished, whenever they wanted. A wife only had one role, to ‘love, honor and obey’ The condition we were in can be clearly seen in Coventry Patmore’s ‘The Angel in the House.’ It talks about how we, women were commodified as just a necessity for man’s pleasure. Sex was of course a taboo for women, we were supposed to be dignified, moral with proper lady like etiquettes. You girls, won’t even believe how conservative our lifestyle was. Women were allowed to have one sexual partner throughout their life, while men could have multiple. Despite, all this morality, prostitution boomed much during our times. This again was the hypocrisy of the Victorian era. Vanity fair, amongst other texts depicted this. Well, I could go on forever about, how things were in the Victorian era. But we learned from our mistakes. We rose up, feminism rose up. We got voting rights, we fought for education so that you can have a foundation stone. You may think you are previliged and you are, definitely.. no doubt about that, but remember that it’s a constant struggle, you have to prove to the world that women are just as good as any man. Your foremothers, Victorian women. - Aaiz Ahmed (1313201)

Drawing: Raniya Sameer (1313242)

Layout Design: Keshav Ravi (1313208) and Aditya Venugopal (1313254) Also included:Song: Nathaniel Barna (1313298) and Nischay Joshua (1313255) Radio Talk show: Aaiz Ahmed (1313201) and Oindrila Mukherjee (1313263) THANK YOU

Victorian Era  

An e magazine on victorian era of literature