The Monstrous Debt: Modalities of Romantic Influence in Twentieth-Century Literature

Overview

The authors in this collection join an animated debate on the persistence of Romanticism. Even as dominant twentieth-century cultural movements have contested Romantic "myths" of redemptive Nature, individualism, perfectibility, the transcendence of art, and the heart’s affections, the Romantic legacy survives as a point of tension and of inspiration for modern writers. Rejecting the Bloomian notion of anxious revisionism, The Monstrous Debt argues that various kinds of influences, inheritances, and indebtedness ...

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Overview

The authors in this collection join an animated debate on the persistence of Romanticism. Even as dominant twentieth-century cultural movements have contested Romantic "myths" of redemptive Nature, individualism, perfectibility, the transcendence of art, and the heart’s affections, the Romantic legacy survives as a point of tension and of inspiration for modern writers. Rejecting the Bloomian notion of anxious revisionism, The Monstrous Debt argues that various kinds of influences, inheritances, and indebtedness exist between well-known twentieth-century authors and canonical Romantic writers.

Among the questions asked by this volume are: How does Blake’s graphic mythology submit to "redemptive translations" in the work of Dylan Thomas? How might Ted Hughes’s strong readings of a "snaky" Coleridge illuminate the "mercurial" poetic identity of Sylvia Plath? How does Shelley "sustain" the work of W. B. Yeats and Elizabeth Bishop with supplies of "imaginative oxygen"? In what ways does Keats enable Bob Dylan to embrace influence? How does Keats prove inadequate for Tony Harrison as he confronts contemporary violence? How does "cockney" Romanticism succeed in shocking John Betjeman’s poetry out of kitsch into something new and strange?

The Monstrous Debt seeks to broaden our sense of what "influence" is by defining the complex of relations that contribute to the making of the modern literary text. Scholars and students of the Romantic era will enjoy this informative volume.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814330586
  • Publisher: Wayne State University Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2006
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Damian Walford Davies and Richard Marggraf Turley are co-directors of the Centre for Romantic Studies at University of Wales, Aberystwyth.
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Table of Contents


Foreword   Lucy Newlyn     vii
Acknowledgments     xv
Introduction   Damian Walford Davies   Richard Marggraf Turley     1
"In the Path of Blake": Dylan Thomas's "Altarwise by Owl-Light"   Damian Walford Davies     11
"One Cry for Justice": Virginia Woolf Reads Mary Wollstonecraft   Harriet Devine Jump     41
Power and Hiding Places: Wordsworth and Seamus Heaney   Hugh Haughton     61
"Beauty, Resonance, Integrity": Creative Rereadings of Wordsworth in Twentieth-Century American Poetry   Lisa M. Steinman     101
Coleridge, Ted Hughes, and Sylvia Plath: Mythology and Identity   John Beer     123
"The All-Sustaining Air": Yeats, Stevens, Rich, Bishop-Responses to Romantic Poetry   Michael O'Neill     143
John Keats and Tony Harrison: The Burden of History   John Whale     163
"Johnny's in the Basement": Keats, Bob Dylan, and the End of Influence   Richard Marggraf Turley     181
"Love's the burning boy": Hemans's Critical Legacy   Emma Mason     205
Overcoming Kitsch: Thoughts on Linguistic and Class Resource from Keats to Betjeman   John Bayley     225
Contributors     233
Index     237
Credits     245
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