"Dover Beach"

Matthew Arnold Facts
English writer
lived in England
professor of Poetry at Oxford
friend of Lord Landsdawne

Matthew Arnold Writings
poetry and critisicism
wrote essays and lectures

MA Notable Works
The Strange Reveler and Other Poems by A
Dover Beach most successful work
Empedocles on Etna-most successful book of poems

MA Themes
wrote about the loneliness and the confusion and the disintegration that an individual feels when alienated from culture, past, god,and other people

author of Dover Beach
Matthew Arnold

First Stanza
Describes a calm beach and sea
Word choice very important; calm words

Second Stanza
Human misery comes and goes, like the tied
Sophocles- wrote Greek tragedies
“it” = eternal note of sadness

Third Stanza
Collective human faith receding
Faith- religious faith in each other “trust” in humanity, in your self, family, etc.
Lines 25, 26, 27- dying breath of faith, faith is going away

Fourth Stanza
seeing old beliefs as dreams now
humankind losing faith
4th stanza is the truth

despair words
naked- truth revealed
darkling- not hopeful
struggle- failure
land of dreams- dreams not real, not true

Although its not always seen by everyone, the truth is always there
land of dreams- he saw it
not everyone saw it, took him a while to see it

Meaning in meaningless
says no joy, but still has love and his lover

When we advance society we lose faith in important stuff
leave behind joy, love, light

Truth is what people make it
faith, saw harshness and enlightened