William Blake Poem Analysis

500 Words2 Pages
The poem the Chimney Sweeper is pointing out the injustices of childhood labor at this point in time, which was around the late 1700's. According to the footnote in the book legislative tried to pass a protective law for the children, but it was never enforced. Since the legislative was attempted to be passed though it must have been a known issue in London at the time while Blake was writing this poem. The interesting thing about the poem is that Tom sees the world through such an innocent light. Even when bad things happen to him, such as getting his head shaved, he looks at it through a positive and innocent light by saying at least my white hair will not be ruined by the soot. Young children cannot stand having their hair cut or shaved, and by him pointing out that his head was shaved helps shed a light on his age. While there is no mention of Tom's age, we can assume he is probably just old enough to walk and talk since he does mention he was barely old enough to weep. Blake is pointing out here that by parents selling their children to the chimney sweepers he is taking away their innocence and the best thing they can hope for is death. Tom, in the poem is dreaming of the day he will die because even as a child he knows that will be the best day of his life. He knows as soon as he dies and goes to heaven he will have god to take care of him and he will not have to perform those awful tasks anymore. For a young child to have to be put into a situation where they know if they work hard and do the right thing they will be able to go to heaven is intense. I believe Blake was outraged at the fact these children were put into such harsh conditions and he wanted to point out how bad it was for them in this poem. He also uses white and black alot to make his points in this poem. Everything black is associated with the dirty job of the chimney sweepers. The soot that
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