Romantic Individuation and Individualism: Re-reading William Blake’s Vision of Romantic “Thingliness”

In this article, we are introducing three terminologies, namely “Individuation”, “Individualism” and “Thingliness” as far as Blake‟s Romantic vision is concerned. We posit that Blake‟s Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience, besides portraying the two contrary states of the human person, are journeys of life from individuation, through individualism and back to individuation, rather to “Thingliness”. Put differently, the Songs of Innocence define who we are and the process by which we can fulfil our potential to become all that we can be (Individuation) whereas the Songs of Experience define what we have become (Individualism) and the process by which we can become what we were before (Thingliness). The first is a state of perfect harmony in the cosmos, the second is disharmony and the third is a journey back to the state of perfect harmony. To inform our discourse, we make recourse to the psychoanalytical theories of Carl Jung and Ecocriticism.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijll.v7n2p2