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William Blake’s “The Little Vagabond” and Organized Religion

Journal: International Journal of English, Literature and Social Science (Vol.5, No. 2)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 478-484

Keywords : Christianity; organized religion; Songs of Innocence and Experience; The Little Vagabond; William Blake.;

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This article is an analysis of William Blake's poem “The Little Vagabond” from the angle of Blake's views on organized religion. The article identifies three main themes of the poem; happiness, the sacred and the profane and assesses the tension between them. The article assesses the tension between these three in the poem to show Blake's criticism of organized religion, later developed in his prophetic books. The little vagabond unwittingly identifies a dichotomy of organized religion in its inability to combine happiness with the sacred. Its strictures against happiness make happiness profane. As happiness is exiled to only keep company with the profane, the boy innocently suggests making the sacred the profane. Blake develops these ideas in molding his character of Urizon, the cold lawgiver, father of stern and somber organized religion.

Last modified: 2020-04-22 17:01:44