Published in 1794, "London" is a poem by British writer William Blake. The poem has a somber, morbid tone and reflects Blake's unhappiness and dissatisfaction with his life in London. Blake describes the troublesome socioeconomic and moral decay in London and residents' overwhelming sense of hopelessness. "London" offers little inspiration for those who must endure the oppressive and stifling environment.
Industrial Revolution's drawbacks
Blake wants readers to increase their awareness of the degrading conditions in London. The industrial revolution has taken its toll on citizens who now feel tired, sad and disconnected. Conditions in the city have worsened under the government's economic and social control, and people have abandoned much of their moral and ethical behavior. Blake's message is a wake-up call, so readers won't be lulled into believing that their current situation is acceptable, much less ideal.