A London Summer Morning by Mary RobinsonLibrarian Note: There is more than one author by this name in the Goodreads database.
Mary Robinson, nee Darby (1757-1800) was an English poet and novelist. During her lifetime she was known as the English Sappho. She was also known for her role as Perdita (heroine of Shakespeares The Winters Tale) in 1779 and as the first public mistress of George IV. After seeing her as Perdita, and declaring himself enraptured with her, the Prince of Wales, offered Mary Robinson twenty thousand pounds to become his mistress. However, he soon tired of her and abandoned her after a year, refusing to pay the money. Her reputation was destroyed by the affair, and she could no longer find work as an actress. Eventually, the Crown agreed to pay Robinson five thousand pounds, in return for the Princes love letters to her. In 1783, at the age of 26, Robinson suffered a mysterious illness that left her partially paralyzed. From the late 1780s, she became distinguished for her poetry. In addition to poems, she wrote six novels, two plays, a feminist treatise, and an autobiographical manuscript that was incomplete at the time of her death.
ENG 201 (Fall 2014): Lecture 3.2—Modeling Reader Response Criticism
An Analysis of Mary Robinson's Inspiring Thoughts in the Poem "London's Summer Morning"
Misery unites and defines the people. The most basic institutions are decrepit. This image is similarly about a moment of city life, focused on conveying a whole host of moving parts to create a scene that is both recognizable and striking. This is really interesting. The macrocosm is portrayed as a manifestion of individuality rather than a fundamental blanket which supresses individuality. The connection to Impressionism is also really cool and I think it fits very well.
The poem uses a Romantic or, more specifically, a pastoral style of describing this murky summer morning. The use of the pastoral, while creating a scene that is the exact opposite of the pastoral ideal, shows how satirical and critical Robinson was of her city and her society. Robinson merely strides in to inform us nothing much has changed over the years, raining or not. Instead, the reader gets lines like the ones above. London is hot, full of dirty, poor, loud, shrill, and even sleepy people.