'Without contraries is no progression', wrote Blake in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. Although he is often regarded as an otherworldly mystic, Blake was profoundly interested in the philosophical and political issues of his time. Accused by his contemporaries of an 'unbending deportment', he often acted on his sense of 'Opposition' as 'true Friendship'. Conflict was integral to Blake's artistic vision, and his style, but it had more to do with critical engagement than any urge to victory. The essays in this volume conflict as it marked Blake's thinking on politics, religion and the visual arts across the span of his career.