Adam Mickiewicz

  • "Ode to Youth" - What is it about?


    The poem of Adam Mickiewicz ‘’ ode to youth’’ is an ode, as indicated by the title.
    Ode is a kind of a song with verses of laudatory or thankful character. 
    Mickiewicz selected this typically neoclassical genre, the ode, and by selecting this form, he got really close to the age of enlightenment. The poet directs his poem to the recipient specified in the name of the poem. The poem depicts the conservatives from the age of Enlightenment. Conservatives are opposed to the generation of young Romantics. Lyrical subject is encouraging to break all the barriers that limit the human beings, and to discover new places and values.
    By means of contrast the poem shows two different worlds. They’re fighting together for domination. One of them is ‘the old world’, created by people of enlightenment. Mickiewicz is suggesting that the people of the old world are selfish and because of them the world is empty. The second world is full of young people, romantic ideas and energy. This is the reality where the old people don’t see any values. These people don’t have any ideas for the future. They live in the past. These Old people don’t fit to a new, changing world. The lyrical subject doesn’t want that world, he wants to run away from this old world. He knows that world in young hands will be better, it will be based on brotherhood, love and friendship. The world of the young is full of dreams and plans for the future. Youth is a power, which can do miracles.
    The poem was really popular, a lot of people read about it in newspapers, it got well-known during the uprisings time.

    Alicja Wałek