‘Lamia’10 minutes to complete yourannotations of your assigned part ofsection 2.AO2 – Language, structure, form Time and sequence Characters and characterisation Destination Point of view Voices Scenes, places, setting
Themes• To what extent do we see the following themes explored in ‘Lamia’? – Imagination – Truth and beauty ‘Negative Capability’ is the ability to – Negative capability contemplate the world without the desire to try – Nature to reconcile its contradictory aspects, or – Women fit it into closed and rational systems
Imagination Beauty and truth• The imagination provides a • In his early work, Keats link between the real and believed that beauty must the ideal. be the some manifestation• Irreconcilable ideas: the of an ultimate truth – this is imagination embodied by undermined in later work. Lamia’s palace gives access • Keat’s growing awareness of to something beautiful evil and suffering change his which is threatened by the opinion and views about public world of fact and this. duty. At the same time, • Images of suffering and the imagination is shown as illusion of beauty in ‘Lamia’. dangerous as it tempts us away from this world.
Negative capability Nature• Does Keats answer the • Keats is exploring aspects of questions regarding human nature, but through truthfulness and what love the use of non-human is? characters – therefore does• The contradictory elements he bring the reader to any of the story of ‘Lamia’ are conclusions? not reconciled. • Exploration of the desire to have human nature. • Contrasts between the dream-like world of the palace and the reality of Corinth.
Women• Keats’ deepest anxieties are revealed through confrontations with power represented in the female form.• The effect of the female upon the male is often described in his poetry using terms like “enthrall” and “ensnare”, simultaneously suggesting both attraction and fear.• The temptation to escape the responsibility of adulthood is often projected on to an entrapping female – Keats’ recognition that this temptation must be resisted is suggested by the way he punishes the male lovers.• ‘Lamia’ is a variation of this theme where the woman is not only a temptation to leave the world of duty and responsibility but is also destroyed by this world. Why is it significant that Lamia’s concealed identity is that of a serpent?
How does Keats tell the story in lines 350 – 397 of ‘Lamia’? Authorial methods need to be related to the story being told in this section of the poem. Possible content: • narrative perspective/voices: omniscient sympathetic narrator, use of dramatic voices – Lamia, Lycius, interaction of the two – questions and answers, narratorial distancing at the end, etc. (language and form) • setting: pastoral landscape, classical world, Corinth, a ‘once upon a time’ world, house of Lycius, night time, etc. (language and form) • a section at the end of Part 1 of a longer narrative poem written in heroic couplets, etc. (structure) • linear chronology, begins as the couple arrive in Corinth, leads to the encounter with Apollonius and Lamia’s fear and ends with the narrator’s hint about the way the story is to develop, etc. (structure) • elevated poetic language, use of descriptive detail, emotive language, use of direct speech, sensuous detail, use of colour and shape, exotic imagery, use of names, use of the poetic apostrophe, repetition, accumulation of detail, use of adjectives, classical references, inversion of word order, use of contrast, time references, etc. (language, structure, form)