American Literature Authors

            Anne Bradstreet and William Bradford were both authors that lived in the sixteen hundreds. Both authors hailed from England and migrated to America in the sixties. Here they encountered harsh conditions at first but persevered and made it through. Both authors had a very high value for religion and their personal lives revolved around the actions about humans and God together with how the two relate. They both were puritans. Religion played a crucial role in the writings and works of both Anne Bradstreet and William Bradford.

Bradstreet’s poem, “Contemplations” and Bradford’s book ‘Of Plymouth Plantation’ are both works that talk about the relationship between nature and religion. The works are focused on the relationship between nature and Christians’ lives. The two authors had opposing opinions in the question if nature was an embodiment of Satan’s power or a marvel that shows the presence of God and professes His great power. Bradford was of the opinion that nature was a way that Satan worked in the world. His grounds were firmly placed in his traditional Puritan religious beliefs. The puritans believed that Satan was in charge of all the confusion and imbalance in the world.

Though both authors were of the opinion that nature represented more than it was, they differed however in the belief of what it actually represented. Bradstreet, in her poem “Contemplations”, was of the opinion that nature represented the true power of The Most High. She believed that the power and beauty of God’s work is depicted by the beauty and romance experienced in nature. She was of the opinion that nature was a message from God to humans showing that He is present. Thus contrary to what Bradford believed, Bradstreet believed that nature was positive and spiritual.

Both Bradford and Bradstreet recount the loss of loved ones in their writings. They both experience the loss of members of their immediate families and these are reflected in their writings. Bradford writes about the loss of his wife in ‘Of Plymouth Plantation’. Bradstreet on the other hand writes about the loss of her grandchildren in her poem. This reflects a similarity between them in sharing the pain of the loss of loved ones in their works. Bradford refers to the bible in his writing, a characteristic that is queer since the puritans did not read the bible. This however is not seen in Bradstreet’s works and writings.

The use and highlighting of natures’ aesthetic properties is seen in Bradstreet’s poem where she uses many words to describe the properties of nature. Bradford is not positive towards nature and therefore does not attribute any aesthetics towards nature. He maintains his stand on his negative view of nature and the belief that it is related to evil. Bradstreet also views nature as a living thing. She views it as an entity capable of offering praise to its creator and worshipping Him. She views nature, contrary to Bradford, as a tool used to learn and teach, that is capable of pleasing and soothing the soul. Bradford views nature as nothing but chaos and complete turmoil.

The two writers differ in their points of view concerning one subject, nature, but also share similarities. Both authors are from very humble backgrounds and both carry the pain of the loss of loved ones in them. Considering the age in which they lived in, Bradford and Bradstreet have a unique use of style and have their words arranged systematically to form very good pieces of literature. Their works gave rise to the modern day poetry practiced today and they go down in history as very important contributors to the literature field. Though they share a religion, their views on the subject are very different. However, their religious grounds serve as the basis of their writings.

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