The portrayal of power and limits of the imagination in J. Keats’ ‘Hyperion: A Fragment’ and S.T Coleridge’s ‘The Nightingale’

‘Thus imagination is not merely the power of visualization … but a creative power, … an organ of knowledge which transforms objects, sees through them’ (René Wellek). In what ways and to what ends do two or more writers of the period portray the powers and/or limits of the imagination?


In this essay I will be studying the ways and to what ends do two writers of the Romantic period portray powers and limits of the imagination. For this essay, I will be using Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The Nightingale, a Conversational Poem and John Keats’s Hyperion: A Fragment. What can unify the Romantic writers under the umbrella term ‘Romanticism’ is that their writing is a political act;

“the affirmation of the creative powers of the Imagination; a new feeling for the natural world (albeit the Keatsian version is somewhat suburban); the acceptance of an organic model for explaining human behaviour and the rejection of empiricist, materialistic and mechanistic philosophies to explain the world; a concern with the nature of the individual self; a belief in the possibilities of revolution and transformation whether in the moral or political sphere…”[1]

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Tuesday, it was always Tuesday. I awoke to the melody of monitors. Eyes flicking as I hear each chime in one ear, and then the other. Groaning, I roll over to reach the small bedside cabinet where my pills are. My hand clenches around air, I reach again, nothing.  My eyes couldn’t adjust to the blinding light that was all around me, I roll over again, landing my face back onto a cold patch of drool. This bed wasn’t mine, too rubbery, and makes a constant squeaking sound when I move about. Through my bunged nose there is a strong stench of sanitation, bleach, and disgusting hot food. I feel sick, but the burning feeling of throwing up is far too familiar down the back of my throat. I make out a large window from where I am lying, a layer of what I presume to be snow covers grey blocks, rows of red brick, and the rest of the white wasteland out there. It was bright, still too bright to make out everything in detail, but I knew it was there. I felt cold, naked, and distant.

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AM: The Man-made God: A study of Godhood and Artificial Intelligence in Harlan Ellison’s I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream

A study of Godhood and Artificial Intelligence in Harlan Ellison’s I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream





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Grey Spaces

Shopping centres, the human beehive full of capital honey. Drones weaving in and out of shops and cafes. Money exchanging hands every second and bags that almost drag along the floor as you walk out. Shopaholics and shop haters alike dragged along by their friends and partners. They’re all here. Clothes made in another country overseas, unknown to the consumer, paying triple the price of its labour value set by corporations. Yet we do not see it. Why do we see past the poverty, the sweat, the tears of everyday life? We refuse to acknowledge others, overseas and at home. Like drones, we present ourselves coldly to others. Our business is our business.

A Pigeon dangling lifelessly from a bird spike tucked away in the corner of a six-storey car park. Maggots hollowing its corpse from the inside out. It cannot resist.

Car parks. As a child, the greatest fear was that I would be lost in this cold and hollow concrete labyrinth. Identical grey floors, just like mirrors. Rows and rows of cars, but we do not care for cars apart from our own.

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Matthew Ahern


The Fool



John lost his job, he couldn’t help it. When he arrived at work his computer, stationery, and framed pictures were already boxed up and ready to be shipped back home. He thought about this for two whole hours after he got into bed that night at 11 p.m. He didn’t tell his wife- he couldn’t tell Sasha. He did nothing but lay there with his eyes wide open and stared at the clock the bedside cabinet next to him. He was in a permanent state of a cold sweat and couldn’t face his wife. He had avoided her all day, of course, and only came back home at eleven. He remembered that he sat in the car for an hour bawling his eyes out over the steering wheel. Everything went so well that morning until he got into work, ‘what went wrong’ he thought, and probably blamed it on some divine deity that had no say in the matter whatsoever. Lying in bed on that cold December night, his anxiety and paranoia started to take over to a point where he flinched at every bump in the night. He didn’t know if it was the creaking pipes from the boiler or the clown that traumatised him as a child, or just the couple that were having sex in the flat next door.

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Camera Lucida: The memory and insanity of James Carter, A H.P Lovecraft imitation

And here I sit on the edge of the world; between village and country; between village and the sea of the unfathomable unknown; between men and gods; between life and death; between stagnation and decay; between consumption of digestion; between me and man; between man and me; between non-man and non-me; between non-me and non-man; non-woman; non-animal; between me and the viewer; between the viewer and me; the camera and me; the god and me; the camera as god; me and my pint.

       And I sit before me and my pint, the one thing keeping me sane, as I watched hordes of fishing trawlers drift out into the fog that crawled in. My eyes fixed to the condensated glass like a camcorder, playing this scene over and over in my head as it happened right before my eyes.

The fishermen go out to sea…

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University ‘Freshers’ week Anti-survival guide

For the quiet types.

If you’re like me and perhaps you’re sick of hearing about ‘freshers’ as the start of the University year approaches, that’s probably the natural reaction. I have never been much of a party-person or a person-person, and if you’re like me, every time you hear the word ‘freshers’ being brought up in a conversation, it sounds like hell-on-earth. That would be an accurate way to describe it. As I am now going into my third year and I have to hear the general spiel about how exciting and life-changing freshers will be again, and it usually rowels up the students entering their first year. Unless you’re like me who hated it from the very beginning. So this will be five points that contribute to the anti-survival guide for people who hate people, and will hopefully disillusion some freshers who can’t wait to spend the whole week drunk and being buddy-buddy with their newly acquired ‘housemates’.

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