English Literature GCSE: William Blake - London

Hip-hop star Akala explores William Blake’s poem ‘London’ and discusses how power and authority are abused to oppress the weakest in society.

Everywhere Blake saw people who were oppressed and downtrodden. Akala discusses the poem and what it can tell us about the present day with poet and presenter, Mr Gee.

This clip is from the series Between the Lines: The Romantics.

Teacher Notes

Discuss the poem’s content, ideas, language and structure. What emotions are evoked?

Pupils could look into context, compare alternative interpretations of the poem and explore Blake’s world, and the influences behind his poem/poetry.

Curriculum Notes

Romantic poetry is a key requirement on the new English Literature GCSE syllabus being taught from 2015 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.