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Born in Germany, where he studied music and philology, Francis Hueffer (1845 89) moved to London in 1869 to pursue a career as a critic and writer on music. He edited a series of biographies of notable musicians, served as music critic for The Times, contributed articles to Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians, and was an early advocate and interpreter to the British of Wagner. In 1872 he married Catherine, the younger daughter of the painter Ford Madox Brown. Their son was the writer Ford Maddox Ford. Provencal studies were an abiding interest of Hueffer's and he intended this work, first published in 1878, to be an approachable English-language study of medieval Provencal literary and musical culture. It won him membership of the Felibrige, the association of Provencal writers, and he gave lectures on the topic at the Royal Institution in 1880.
A revealing look at how the Orpheus myth helped Renaissance writers and thinkers understand the force of eloquence In ancient Greek mythology, the lyrical songs of Orpheus charmed the gods, and compelled animals, rocks, and trees to obey his commands. This mythic power inspired Renaissance philosophers and poets as they attempted to discover the hidden powers of verbal eloquence. They wanted to know: How do words produce action? In The Trials of Orpheus, Jenny Mann examines the key role the Orpheus story played in helping early modern writers and thinkers understand the mechanisms of rhetorical force. Mann demonstrates that the forms and figures of ancient poetry indelibly shaped the principles of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century scientific knowledge. Mann explores how Ovid's version of the Orpheus myth gave English poets and natural philosophers the lexicon with which to explain language's ability to move individuals without physical contact. These writers and thinkers came to see eloquence as an aesthetic force capable of binding, drawing, softening, and scattering audiences. Bringing together a range of examples from drama, poetry, and philosophy by Bacon, Lodge, Marlowe, Montaigne, Shakespeare, and others, Mann demonstrates that the fascination with Orpheus produced some of the most canonical literature of the age. Delving into the impact of ancient Greek thought and poetry in the early modern era, The Trials of Orpheus sheds light on how the powers of rhetoric became a focus of English thought and literature.
"The world's fair beauty set my soul on fire." In this first study of the full range of Traherne's poetry Richard Willmott explains his 'metaphysical' poetry to all who are attracted by the beauty of his language, but puzzled by his meaning. He offers guidance both for the student of English, uncertain about Traherne's theological ideas, and the student of theology, put off by seventeenth-century poetic conventions and diction. Using a wealth of quotation, he examines Traherne's verse alongside that of a variety of his contemporaries, including Andrew Marvell, Lucy Hutchinson, Anne Bradstreet and Edward Taylor. Central to Traherne's poetry and generous theology is his delight in the capacity of his soul to approach God through an appreciation of His infinite creation. This soul is 'voluble', not only because it can express its thoughts with fluency, but also because it can enfold within itself the infinity of God's creation, taking in everything that it perceives, considering the latest scientific speculations about the atom and astronomy, but also looking clear-sightedly at Restoration society's materialism and - in one startlingly savage satire - the corruption of the royal court.
The Cambridge Companion to Postcolonial Poetry is the first collection of essays to explore postcolonial poetry through regional, historical, political, formal, textual, gender, and comparative approaches. The essays encompass a broad range of English-speakers from the Caribbean, Africa, South Asia, and the Pacific Islands; the former settler colonies, such as Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, especially non-Europeans; Ireland, Britain's oldest colony; and postcolonial Britain itself, particularly black and Asian immigrants and their descendants. The comparative essays analyze poetry from across the postcolonial anglophone world in relation to postcolonialism and modernism, fixed and free forms, experimentation, oral performance and creole languages, protest poetry, the poetic mapping of urban and rural spaces, poetic embodiments of sexuality and gender, poetry and publishing history, and poetry's response to, and reimagining of, globalization. Strengthening the place of poetry in postcolonial studies, this Companion also contributes to the globalization of poetry studies.
A collection of essays written by well-known contemporary Irish women poets about their lives in relation to their own poetics.
A unique look into poets' minds and creative process -- personal identity blends with national Irish identity -- this book focuses on the transformation of these women's life experiences into their poetry. It is a conglomeration of voices around common themes, which have recently and forcefully emerged to permanently change Irish poetry.
The experience of being women in a politically and religiously charged, male-dominated genre and country is one that transcends daily life by the need to articulate against the "norm". Poets describe in their own words, the issues they confronted in their growth as poets and the strategies they developed to translate life into art. The reader is allowed to see the threads that link these poets to one another and the characteristics that define their unique, individual subjects, themes, and styles.
Included is a poem by each poet and a companion prose piece -- many of which are autobiographical -- that relates to the subject of the poem.
Although Mozart's Don Giovanni (1787) is the most analysed of all operas, Lorenzo Da Ponte's libretto has rarely been studied as a work of poetry in its own right. The author argues that the libretto, rather than perpetuating the conservative religious morality implicit in the story of Don Juan, subjects our culture's myth of human sexuality to a critical rewriting. Combining poetic close reading with approaches drawn from linguistics, psychoanalysis, anthropology, political theory, legal history, intellectual history, literary history, art history and theatrical performance analysis, she studies the Don Giovanni libretto as a radical political text of the Late Enlightenment, which has lost none of its ability to provoke. The questions it raises concerning the nature of compassion, seduction and violence, and the autonomy and responsibility of the individual, are still highly relevant for us today.
This book offers the first comprehensive close reading in any language of the complete works of Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867). Taking full account of his critical writings on literature and the fine arts, it provides fresh readings of Les Fleurs du Mal and Le Spleen de Paris. It situates these works within the context of nineteenth-century French literature and culture and reassesses Baudelaire's reputation as the 'father' of modern poetry. Whereas he is traditionally considered to have rejected the public role of the writer as moralist, educator, and political leader and to have dedicated himself instead to the exclusive pursuit of beauty in art, this book contends not only that he rejected Art for Art's sake but that he saw in 'beauty'-defined not as an inherent quality but as an effect of harmony and rich conjecture-an alternative ethos with which to resist the tyrannies of ideology and conformism. Contrarian in his thinking and provocatively innovative in his poetic practice, Baudelaire fell foul of the law when six poems in Les Fleurs du Mal (1857) were banned for obscenity. In the second edition (1861), substantially recast and enlarged, the poet as alternative lawgiver made plainer still his resistance to the orthodoxies of his day. In a series of major critical articles he proclaimed the 'government of the imagination', while from 1855 until his death he developed an alternative literary form, the prose poem-a thing of beauty and an invitation to imagine the world afresh, to make our own rules.
In this book, a sequel to Traditions and Contexts in the Poetry of Horace (Cambridge University Press, 2002), ten leading Latin scholars provide specially commissioned in-depth discussions of the poetry of Catullus, one of ancient Rome's most favourite and best loved poets. Some chapters focus on the collection as a whole and the interrelationship of various poems; others deal with intertextuality and translation and Catullus' response to his Greek predecessors, both classical and Hellenistic. Two of the key subjects are the communication of desire and the presentation of the real world. Some chapters provide analyses of individual poems, others discuss how Catullus' poetry was read by Virgil and Ovid. A wide variety of critical approaches is on offer, and in the Epilogue the editors provide a provocative survey of the issues raised by the volume.
It is widely recognised that the epics of Homer are closely related to the earlier mythology and literature of the Ancient Near East, above all the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh. But how should this influence our response to the meaning and message of either poem? This book responds to this question through an experiment in intertextual reading. It begins by exploring Gilgamesh as a work of literature in its own right, and uses this interpretation as the springboard for a new reading of the Homeric epic, emphasising the movement within the poem - beginning from a world of heroic action and external violence, but shifting inwards to the thoughts and feelings of Achilles as he responds to the certainty that his own death will follow that of his best friend. The book will be of interest both to specialists and to those coming to ancient literature for the first time.
Self-reflection, as the hallmark of the modern age, originates more profoundly with Dante than with Descartes. This book rewrites modern intellectual history, taking Dante's lyrical language in Paradiso as enacting a Trinitarian self-reflexivity that gives a theological spin to the birth of the modern subject already with the Troubadours. The ever more intense self-reflexivity that has led to our contemporary secular world and its technological apocalypse can lead also to the poetic vision of other worlds such as those experienced by Dante. Facing the same nominalist crisis as Duns Scotus, his exact contemporary and the precursor of scientific method, Dante's thought and work indicate an alternative modernity along the path not taken. This other way shows up in Nicholas of Cusa's conjectural science and in Giambattista Vico's new science of imagination as alternatives to the exclusive reign of positive empirical science. In continuity with Dante's vision, they contribute to a reappropriation of self-reflection for the humanities.
This book provides a groundbreaking reassessment of the prehistory of Homeric epic. It argues that in the Early Iron Age bilingual poets transmitted to the Greeks a set of narrative traditions closely related to the one found at Bronze-Age Hattusa, the Hittite capital. Key drivers for Near Eastern influence on the developing Homeric tradition were the shared practices of supralocal festivals and venerating divinized ancestors, and a shared interest in creating narratives about a legendary past using a few specific storylines: theogonies, genealogies connecting local polities, long-distance travel, destruction of a famous city because it refuses to release captives, and trying to overcome death when confronted with the loss of a dear companion. Professor Bachvarova concludes by providing a fresh explanation of the origins and significance of the Greco-Anatolian legend of Troy, thereby offering a new solution to the long-debated question of the historicity of the Trojan War.
Lyric Eye: The Poetics of Twentieth-Century Surveillance presents the first detailed study of the relationship between poetry and surveillance. It critically examines the close connection between American lyric poetry and a burgeoning US state surveillance apparatus from 1920 to the 1960s. The book explores the myriad ways that poets-Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams, W.H. Auden, Langston Hughes, James Baldwin, Sylvia Plath, Gertrude Stein, Robert Lowell, Allen Ginsberg and others-explored a developing and fraught environment in which the growing power of American investigative agencies, such as the FBI under J. Edgar Hoover, imposed new pressures on cultural discourse and personal identity. In analysing twentieth-century American poetry and its various ideas about "the self," Lyric Eye demonstrates the extent to which poetry and surveillance employ similar styles of information-gathering such as observation, overhearing, imitation, abstraction, repurposing of language, subversion, fragmentation and symbolism. Ground-breaking and prescient, this book will be of great interest to scholars and researchers of literature, politics, surveillance and intelligence studies, and digital humanities.
Scholarly reception has bequeathed two Callimachuses: the Roman version is a poet of elegant non-heroic poetry (usually erotic elegy), represented by a handful of intertexts with a recurring set of images slender Muse, instructing divinity, small voice, pure waters; the Greek version emphasizes a learned scholar who includes literary criticism within his poetry, an encomiast of the Ptolemies, a poet of the book whose narratives are often understood as metapoetic. This study does not dismiss these Callimachuses, but situates them within a series of interlocking historical and intellectual contexts in order better to understand how they arose. In this narrative of his poetics and poetic reception four main sources of creative opportunism are identified: Callimachus' reactions to philosophers and literary critics as arbiters of poetic authority, the potential of the text as a venue for performance, awareness of Alexandria as a new place, and finally, his attraction for Roman poets.
Geoffrey Chaucer is widely acknowledged as the greatest English poet of the Middle Ages. His texts are studied extensively but, in order to be fully appreciated, they demand a nuanced understanding of the medieval period. This volume provides freshly illuminated access to Chaucer's writing through an unrivalled repertoire of contextual information and perspectives designed to enhance the independence and critical capacities of his modern readers. The featured essays are written not only by distinguished literary scholars but also by leading international historians. Geoffrey Chaucer in Context is an essential reference tool for anyone studying Chaucer and will help readers to identify his different voices and engage with the complexity and colour of his times with new awareness.
This volume covers the production of Eliot's play The Family Reunion; the publication of The Idea of a Christian Society; and the joyous versifying of Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats. After exhausting himself through nights of fire-watching in the London wartime blackout, he travels the country, attends meetings of The Moot, delivers talks, and advises a fresh generation of writers including Cyril Connolly, Keith Douglas, Kathleen Raine and Vernon Watkins. Major correspondents include W. H. Auden, George Barker, William Empson, Geoffrey Faber, John Hayward, James Laughlin, Hope Mirrlees, Mervyn Peake, Ezra Pound, Michael Roberts, Stephen Spender, Tambimuttu, Allen Tate, Michael Tippett, Charles Williams and Virginia Woolf. Four Quartets, Eliot's culminating masterpiece, is discussed in detail.
Dickinson knew the Bible well. She was profoundly aware of Christian theology and she was writing at a time when comparative religion was extremely popular. This book is the first to consider Dickinson's religious imagery outside the dynamic of her personal faith and doubt. It argues that religious myths and symbols, from the sun-god to the open tomb, are essential to understanding the similetic movement of Dickinson's poetry - the reach for a comparable, though not identical, experience in the struggles and wrongs of Abraham, Jacob and Moses, and the life, death and resurrection of Christ. Linda Freedman situates the poet within the context of American typology, interprets her alongside contemporary and modern theology and makes important connections to Shakespeare and the British Romantics. Dickinson emerges as a deeply troubled thinker who needs to be understood within both religious and Romantic traditions.
Ovid is perhaps the most important surviving Latin poet and his work has influenced writers throughout the world to the present day. This volume presents a groundbreaking series of essays on his reception across in the Middle Ages. The collection includes contributions from distinguished Ovidians as well as leading specialists in medieval Latin and vernacular literature, clerical and extra-clerical culture and medieval art, and addresses questions of manuscript and textual transmission, translation, adaptation and imitation. It also explores the intersecting cultural contexts of the schools (monastic and secular), courts and literate lay households. It elaborates the scale and scope of the enthusiasm for Ovid in medieval Europe, following readers of the canon from the Carolingian monasteries to the early schools of the Ile de France and on into clerical and curial milieux in Italy, Spain, the British Isles and even the Byzantine Empire.
Available once more, this is a comprehensive, comparative literary philological examination of two enduring bodies of love poetry from the ancient Near East.
Victorian England: a Jesuit priest writes of wrestling with God at night, limbs entangled; an Anglican sister begs Jesus, her divine lover, to end her aching anticipation of their union; a clergyman exhorts nuns to study the example of medieval women who suffered on the rack in order to become ""brides"" of Christ. Alongside the march of nineteenth-century progress ran a seemingly paradoxical fascination with a dark, erotically suggestive side of religious devotion: the figuration of the Christian God as a heavenly bridegroom who doles out punishment to his bride, the individual soul. Through innovative case studies of Victorian religious poetry, Amanda Paxton reveals that while the punitive model proved a convenient rhetorical tool with which to deflate burgeoning nineteenth-century campaigns for women's rights and challenges to Church authority, in the hands of several writers it also provided a means of resisting patriarchal institutions and interrogating distinctions between science and religion. Willful Submission is the first full-length volume to examine the interplay of sex, suffering, and religion as a touchstone in Victorian culture and verse.
Jessica Rosenfeld provides a history of the ethics of medieval vernacular love poetry by tracing its engagement with the late medieval reception of Aristotle. Beginning with a history of the idea of enjoyment from Plato to Peter Abelard and the troubadours, the book then presents a literary and philosophical history of the medieval ethics of love, centered on the legacy of the Roman de la Rose. The chapters reveal that 'courtly love' was scarcely confined to what is often characterized as an ethic of sacrifice and deferral, but also engaged with Aristotelian ideas about pleasure and earthly happiness. Readings of Machaut, Froissart, Chaucer, Dante, Deguileville and Langland show that poets were often markedly aware of the overlapping ethical languages of philosophy and erotic poetry. The study's conclusion places medieval poetry and philosophy in the context of psychoanalytic ethics, and argues for a re-evaluation of Lacan's ideas about courtly love.
The purpose of this series is to promote the study of writing in the English language through the introduction of the major figures writing in English throughout the ages. They provide an analytical and historical framework for understanding their subjects. This text looks afresh at Tennyson's life achievements. He blows the dust off Tennyson's image as "perpetually middle-aged" and shows a complex man sustaining his creative powers until the last.
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