Man vs Nature

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Mans relationship with nature is constantly evolving

While Man and nature are inextricably linked, the contemporary world has transformed man’s interaction with nature. In Kenneth Slessor’s poem “North Country”, he explores man’s exploitation of nature in pursuit of industrial progress, an idea reflected in Charles Purcell’s feature article, “Into those arms no more”. Meanwhile, William Wordsworth’s poem, “Lines Written In Early Spring,” explores the supremacy of nature, while Thomas Cole’s artwork “Destruction” gives insight to man’s overconfidence and vanity fixated in nature’s supremeness.

Man and industrialization poses a significant threat to guileless nature, as progress has come at the expense of the landscape. Slessor’s “North Country” foregrounds his pessimistic view of the damaging effect of man’s exploitation through a lamenting and sorrowful tone, “The flanks of hidden valleys, where nothings left to hide.” This reinforces nature’s vulnerability, which is juxtaposed with the vivid macabre imagery of man’s actions as the trees are left, “Dripping red with blood.” This highlights the pain and suffering that the industry imposes on nature, deepening the solemn and plaintive mood of the poem. Furthermore, man’s environmental abuse as a result of ‘progress’ is conveyed through the metaphor, “Trunks of pewter, bangled by greedy death, stuck with black stag horns, quietly sucking.”, The parasitical imagery illustrates the suffocating impacts on the environment, with a pervasive sense of decay a characteristic of industrialization. The use of personification, “Boughs go seeking” emphasizes the loss of hope where nothing’s left. Hence, man’s disregard of the natural world in accordance with nature’s guilelessness ultimately leads to unnecessary misuse and manipulation.

Comparatively, Charles Purcell’s feature article, “Into those arms no more,” emphatically expresses the devastating impact on nature. While the article is a personal recount of...
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