Topic: Examine how the poem Holy Thursday is an "outspoken protest" against the evil effect of industrialization.

Essay by coconut_bananaHigh School, 10th gradeA+, June 2005

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William Blake's poem "Holy Thursday- Songs of Innocence" is concerned with the abusive public display of children for their benefactor's glory on Holy Thursday. The poem follows Blake, an observer, as he expresses his mixed emotions towards the occasion and the parties involved. By using techniques such as allusion and by establishing a variety of tones Blake's poem becomes an outspoken protest regarding the misuse and ill-treatment of children resulting from industrialization.

The composers protesting stance is evident in the first stanza through the use of the words "innocent faces clean". This emphasises the confusing situation and shows that these children are lacking in understanding about their circumstances. The word "faces" also arouses a sense that this is a put on generosity and simply a public act. The final word clean can be interpreted both mentally and physically. It further develops the idea of innocence and also makes the responder aware that their present physical cleanliness isn't usual.

In the following line the use of repetition and polysyndeton through "two & two in red & blue & green" not only establishes an ironic childish tone but also emphasises the efforts of these benefactors to be gratified and the disciplines placed upon these children. The "grey headed beadles" further establish these restrictions and through juxtaposition show the differing nature of the children to these benefactors. Blake's euphemism in "wands as white as snow" shows that the children are blind to the truth and reinforces their moral purity. The final line is discordant and further emphasises this point by directing special attention to the distorted nature of this society.

The following stanza begins with an apostrophe, "O", showing the amazement resulting from the "multitude" of London's "flowers". This shows they are the potential future life of the city and...