Traits of Feminism in the Poetry of Major Romantic Poets

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Feminism, a movement towards gender equality, helps us understand various trends in the works of the major poets of the Romantic period, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and John Keats, respectively, the most representative of the earlier and later Romantics. The Romantics, consciously or unconsciously, foresaw the wave of feministic awareness among the womenfolk. The suppression of feminine gender, thought and condition was prevalent throughout, dating to the beginning of the human existence. The surge of the movement that started in later 18th century was to pave way for the major feministic uprisings in their own spheres of influences. Although, highly engrossed in medieval concepts of patriarchy, Romantic poets like S.T Coleridge, John Keats’ fraction of work silhouettes range in the attributes of Feminism. They are; liberty of thought, freedom of expression and equality in social hierarchy with men. The role of women in society, in early 18th century and before, portrays a dismal picture as far as their liberty, social status and gender equality is concerned. Medieval culture, deep rooted in religion, had kept woman at bay from the mainstream economic, political and societal activities. She was a threat to the male chauvinism and was condemned as a weaker, inferior sort of being. In the Holy Bible the serpent assures Eve that she would not die if she ate from the forbidden tree (Genesis 3:4), alluding to the fact she is much more vulnerable to the lure and could be easily deceived as compared to men. Her failure to show prudence becomes the foundation of persecution when she entices Adam into eating of the fruit from the forbidden tree. In the realm of literature, a woman is considered as a seductress and a symbol of man’s downfall, mythological she is “Lilith1”, and “Fatal Woman2” who is destined to doom man’s character by posing hurdles in his ways to accomplishment,
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