great chain

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William Blake was a member of a social class with a long history of radical dissent. The Artisan class which he, as the son of a hosier, was born into and consequently remained in as an engraver later in his life, had opposed in turn first the landed mercantile aristocracy in the late eighteenth century and then the emerging industrial capitalism of the early nineteenth. However, in order to determine whether Blake's visionary world had …

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…coherent social context is unavoidably necessary to permit intelligibility, and usually, as in Blake's case, political and social change are the motivating factors that inspire the need to master reality through art. BIBLIOGRAPHY Crehan, S/BLAKE IN CONTEXT (Gill & MacMillan) Erdman, D/PROPHET AGAINST EMPIRE (Princeton) Mason, M (Ed.)/WILLIAM BLAKE (Oxford) Raine, K/BLAKE & THE NEW AGE (Unwin) Sampson, J(Ed.)/POETICAL WORKS OF BLAKE (Oxford) Thompson, E/WITNESS AGAINST THE BEAST (Cambridge)wersdf