Themes in Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney

Themes in Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney

There are so many Themes in Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney that are Significance of poetry, Defense of poetry, Criticism on contemporary tragedy and comedy, The superiority of poetry over history and philosophy, Poetry and religion and theme of Nationalism. What three arguments does Sidney defend poetry against? What are the four objectives raised against poetry in an apology for poetry?, What is the Sir Philip Sidney views about poetry in his essay an apology for poetry?, What is the Sir Philip Sidney views about poetry?
Apology for poesy is a critical document by Philip Sidney to advocate the status of poetry and the functionality of poetry in his contemporary era. It is regarded as the epitome of renaissance criticism. He is intended to show the connection between art and virtue. He has depicted the superiority of poetry over the other branches of knowledge. 

Significance of poetry

Themes in An Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney: He has main concern towards the nature and functionality of poetry in his book Apology of Poesy. He is of the view that the function of poetry is to delight and teach us. He answers the charges made by Puritans with rigorous force. He is of the view that poetry is the nobler kind of literature. He says that the epic and the religious poetry move us to do heroic actions. The true end of the poetry is to inspire us to commit virtuous actions. He says that poetry is significant because it tells us the true realities of the world. The poet observes the realities of the world and tries to interpret them in literary art such as fiction and poetry.

Defense of poetry

There are uncountable Themes in An Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney but Defense of poetry is one of the best themes of An Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney. He has tried to defend the poetry on intellectual and moral grounds. The puritans blamed the poets for having an intellectual and imaginative bent of mind. They consider the poet as the liars and the poetry as the mother and pack of lies. But he defended the poetry by saying that poets are the realist of our society. They try to conceive the inner truth of society through poetry. He says that poetry always forces us to move toward reality through imagination. He gives his views about the functionality and the nature of poetry. He answers against the charge about the abuse of poetry. The puritans consider the nature of poetry that it moves us to the imaginative world. It does not provide us an opportunity to meet with the realities. But Sidney is of the view that through the epic and religious stories poetry provides us the view of real life. His main aim is to secure the status of poetry and poets. He does not believe that Plato wants to banish the poets from the country. He says that he wants to banish inferior poets in order to save the poetry from the abuses. 

Criticism on contemporary tragedy and comedy

Sidney condemns the literary trends of his contemporary era. He is against mingling the tears and laughter. He criticizes them for providing such comedies in that era. He is of the view that the writers of the era cannot produce pure tragedies. The only refined tragedy was GORBUDUC. He says that the tragedies produced in this era were able to be criticized because they do not meet the demand of the time. He says that the end of literary art should be delight and pleasure. The true end of the comedy should be a depiction of pleasure and delight.

The superiority of poetry over history and philosophy

The superiority of poetry over history and philosophy is one of the prominent themes in Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney. Philip Sidney asserts that poetry is the best mode of expressing realities and the truth of the world. He considers the worth of poetry more than history and philosophy. He says that all arts should help man to raise his status. The process of learning is the true end of all arts and literature. He says that history tells us about the realities of the past. But there is so much description about the wars and the bloodshed. The historian claimed that wars are an integral part of the past and should be promoted. They claim that wars are necessary for the existence of nations and countries. Sometimes there is the false representation is presented in the history books in order to create a historical outlook. Philosophy also narrates the truth of the world. Their learning process is based on the percept only. Their models are barely based on the perspective study only. He considers the poetic process more philosophical than history and philosophy. He says that poets are more mystic in their nature to exhibit all the realities of the world. The poets deal with universal ideas. Their concern is not to the particular idea or subject but to deal with the universality of the ideas and themes. So the poetry is the highest form of knowledge.

Poetry and religion

Sidney treats the relationship between poetry and religion as the main theme in his book an apology of poesy. He analyzes the religious concern in contemporary poetry and in Greek time. He is of the view that the true end of poetry is to praise the greatness and attributes of God. He comes with this point against the charge made against the poetry that poetry is a pack of lies. He says that the true end of poetry was to serve his main idea of praising God. He traces the role of poetry in ancient times. He has depicted the concept of Divinity and Christianity in the poetry of older times. He says that the hymns were sung in the praise of God. These hymns were a famous genre of literature at the time. He defended the charges by making such arguments in the favor of poetry. He gave radical arguments against the charges of PURITANS.

Nationalism

He has defended the poetry as well as the national language of his time. He voiced the idea of nationalism through his poetry. He was a great champion of nationalism in his poetry. He has made a significant contribution to English poetry and the history of Renaissance Criticism. He finds that poetry was treated like a stepmother in his times and the poets were not given due importance in his time. He saw a great influence of other languages over his national; language. He himself has was inspired and influenced by the Italian language. So he tried to rescue the status of English poets and poetry through making certain contribution to this. He observes the English natives were failed to observe the importance of work of art. He has played the role of a true instructor to raise the voice of nationalism. He has defended the poets and poetry on all. So at the end we can say that in Apology of Poetry by Philip Sidney are uncountable themes.

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