The Eighteenth-Century Hymn in England

The Eighteenth-Century Hymn in England

by Donald Davie
     
 

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Donald Davie is the foremost literary critic of his generation and one of its leading poets. His career has been marked by a series of challenging and original critical interventions on American, British and East European literature, of which this is the latest. The eighteenth century is the great age of the English hymn, though these powerful and popular texts have… See more details below

Overview

Donald Davie is the foremost literary critic of his generation and one of its leading poets. His career has been marked by a series of challenging and original critical interventions on American, British and East European literature, of which this is the latest. The eighteenth century is the great age of the English hymn, though these powerful and popular texts have been marginalised in the formation of the conventional literary canon. These are poems which have been put to the test of experience by a wider public than that generally envisaged by literary criticism, and have been kept alive by congregations in each generation. Davie's study of the eighteenth-century hymn and metrical psalm brings to light a body of literature forgotten as poetry: work by Charles Wesley and Christopher Smart, Isaac Watts and William Cowper, together with several poets unjustly neglected, such as the mysterious John Byron. In the process Davie reveals the nature of eighteenth-century transformations of biblical texts, and offers insight into the relationship of Christopher Smart's literary style to the aesthetics of English rococo. Davie's new book reclaims for our attention a rich and humanly important literary genre. After this it can no longer be said that the eighteenth century produced little or no lyric poetry.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521039567
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
08/27/2007
Series:
Cambridge Studies in Eighteenth-Century English Literature and Thought Series, #19
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.43(d)

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