A Critical Analysis Of Tension's In Memorial A. H. H.



During the Victorian Period, long held and comfortable religious beliefs
fell under great scrutiny. An early blow to these beliefs came from the
Utilitarian, followers of Jeremy Bantam, in the form of a test by reason of many
of the long-standing institutions of England, including the church. When seen
through the eyes of reason, religion became “merely an outmoded superstition”
(Ford & Christ 896). If this were not enough for the faithful to contend with,
the torch of doubt was soon passed to the scientists. Geologists were
publishing the results of their studies which concluded that the Earth was far
older than the biblical accounts would have it (Ford & Christ 897). ...

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the existence of God. We
glimpse much of his struggles in the poem In Memorial A. H. H., written in
memory of his deceased friend, Arthur Hallam. The poem seemed to be cathartic
for Tennyson, for through its writing he not only found an outlet for his grief
over Hallam's death, but also managed to regain the faith which seemed at times
to have abandoned him. Tennyson regained and firmly reestablished his faith
through the formation of the idea that God is reconciled with the mechanistic
universe through a divine plan of evolution, with Hallam as the potential link
to a greater race of humans yet to come.
In the first of many lyric units, Tennyson's faith in God and Jesus
seems strong. He speaks of “Believing where we cannot prove” (l. 4), and is
sure that God “wilt not leave us in the dust” (l. 9). The increasing threat
posed to religion by science does not worry Tension here, as he believes that
our increasing knowledge of the universe can be reconciled with faith, ...

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himself in the next poem,
however, as he banishes such a possibility on the evidence that love could never
exist in such a reality. What we consider to be love would actually be only be
a two-dimensional sense of “fellowship,” such as animals must feel, out of
boredom or crude sensuality (35.21-24)
The many poems which follow fluctuate between faith and doubt. In

poem fifty-four Tennyson consoles himself with the thought:

“That nothing walks with aimless feet;
That not one life shall be destroyed,
Or cast as rubbish to the void,
When God hat made the pile complete” (54.5-9).

Line nine of poem fifty-four definitely assumes a plan for God's creation,
humanity, and an ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 12/19/2004 09:52:20 PM
Category: English
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1630
Pages: 6

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