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낭만주의 시에 나타난 동물에 대한 공감적 태도 재고- 볼드, 번즈, 코올리지의 시를 중심으로Reconsideration of the Sympathetic Attitude to Animals in Romantic Poems

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Reconsideration of the Sympathetic Attitude to Animals in Romantic Poems
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Anna Barbauld; Robert Burns; S. T. Colerid; The Mouse’s Petition; To a Mouse; To a Young Ass; Sympathy; Romanticis; Animal Rights; 애나 바볼드; 로버트 번즈; 사무엘 테일러 코올리지; 쥐의 호소; 쥐에게; 당나귀에게; 공감; 낭만주의; 동물권
19세기 영어권 문학, v.13, no.1, pp 135 - 159
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19세기 영어권 문학
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This paper is to examine the sentimental attitude towards animals in the late eighteenth and nineteenth century British poetry. Animals had been denigrated as lower beings than humans and used as resources for humans. But the late eighteenth century saw the increasing sentimental attitude toward animals which tended to elevate animals from mere automata to the sentient beings with which humans could identify themselves in the economy of sympathy. The increasing number of pets, the rise of the movement against animal cruelty, and the sentimental treatment of animals indicate the tendency to destablize human superiority to non-humans. However, it is questionable whether this tendency is a symptom of paradigm shift from anthropocentrism to bio-centrism. To explore this issue, I chose Anna Barbauld's “The Mouse's Petition,” Robert Burns' “To a Mouse: On Turning Her up in Her Nest with the Plough, November 1785” and Samuel Taylor Coleridge's “To a Young Ass: its mother being tethered near it,” which showcase sentimental attitude to animals. All of these poems highlight the exuberant sentimental attitude towards animals with sympathetic imagination through which the persona identifies himself/herself with mouse and ass, respectively. In Barbauld's “The Mouse's Petition,” a mouse trapped for animal experimentation speaks for its own liberty by using the rights discourses and calling Priestly a brother. In Burns' “To a Mouse,” the persona apologizes his destruction of mouse's nest to the mouse and treats the mouse like a companion and fellow-mortal. Coleridge in “To a Young Ass” also emphatically calls a young ass a brother and emphasizes him as a victim to human's ruthless cruelty and violence. However, Barbauld also argues that she is not against animal experimentation, but for the benevolent treatment of animals in the scientific experiments. Similarly Burns recognizes the strong boundary between animals and humans. Coleridge's sympathetic attitude to a young ass can be seen as an indirect critique of slavery system and the social inequality. In those poems the sympathy is utilized effectively to highlight the suffering and pains of animals but the strong boundary between humans and animals still remains at the advantage of the former. Therefore it is difficult to see the sentimental attitude towards animals in those poems as an ecological one.
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Chun, Seh Jae
영어영문학부(대학) (영어영문학부)
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