Friday, July 19, 2019

Comparing the Beauty of Poe and Emerson Essay -- comparison compare co

The Beauty of Poe and Emerson      Ã‚  Ã‚  Ã‚   They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As stated in Edgar Allan Poe's "The Poetic Principle," a concept of beauty can only be achieved through the use of emotion, an "excitement of the soul," a necessary element to any worthwhile poem (Poe 8). Poe's fascination with the mystery of death and the afterlife are often clearly rooted in his poems and provide a basis for himself and the reader to truly experience his concept of beauty. Although also a believer in portraying beauty through poetry, Ralph Waldo Emerson found beauty to be eminent in nature and all things created by the Oversoul. Beauty for Emerson is not an idea or unknown, it is visible all around him.    To Poe beauty can only arise from "excitement of the soul," and such emotion can only be brought upon by feelings of melancholy.    He reiterates the importance of melancholy in The Philosophy of Composition--"Now, never losing sight of the object supremeness, or perfection, at all points, I asked myself--- "Of all melancholy topics, what, according to the universal understanding of mankind, is the most melancholy?" Death --- was the obvious reply. "And when," I said, "is this most melancholy of topics most poetical?" From what I have already explained at some length, the answer, here also, is obvious-- "When it most closely allies itself to Beauty: the death, then, of a beautiful woman is, unquestionably, the most poetical topic in the world-- and equally is it beyond doubt that the lips best suited for such a topic are those of a bereaved lover" (Poe 265).    Melancholy and beauty go hand in hand for Poe. If his goal is to bring about the "excitement of the soul," then that can only be achie... ...mself on the beauty of melancholy and the mystery of the afterlife to the point of extreme emotion, while Emerson relayed beauty through the Oversoul. Both revolutionaries of nineteenth century poetry, their works will continue to place a sense of beauty in all who reads them, and live up to the saying: --beauty is in the eye of the beholder.    Works Cited Emerson, Ralph Waldo. "Each and All." The Columbia Anthology of American Poetry. Ed. Jay Parini. New York: Columbia UP, 1993. 95-96. ---. "X. Essays. The Poet." The Harvard Classics. <wysiwyg://48/>. Poe, Edgar Allan. "The Philosophy of Composition," The Works of the Late Edgar Allan Poe, vol. II, 1850, pp. 259-270. ---. "The Poetic Principle" (D), The Works of the Late Edgar Allan Poe, vol. III, 1850, pp. 1-20. ---. "Annabel Lee." Parini 161-162.

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