Analysis Of A Dialogue Between The Soul And Body By Andrew Marvell

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Andrew Marvell, born in England in 1621, redefined the standard conventions and practices of seventeenth century poetry with his anti-government satire and lyric poetry. Despite his negative views on the government, Marvell was member of Parliament and, therefore, choose not to publish many of his harsher political satires for fear of isolation from society. Due to this, much of Marvel’s poetry was published after his death, and it was not until the nineteenth and twentieth century that his lyric poetry gained recognition (Academy of American Poets). Even though Marvell’s poetry was published after his death, it still impacts the understanding of seventeenth century poetry by adding variation to the traditional form that were primarily being used.
Rather than being representative of seventeenth century poetry, Marvell is symbolic of the culture change from medieval and Christian to secular and modern that occurred during that century. The subject matter of “A Dialogue between the Soul and Body” is an example of this evolution since it goes against what many poets wrote about in regards to God. This poem includes the use of metaphysical conceits common in the seventeenth century but is also a commentary on the nature of God’s control over bodies and souls being fallible (Poetry Foundation). Marvell expresses frustrations with God and questions God and his omniscience. While this poem does not align with traditional Christian values, it primarily addresses the form of
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