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Pastoral Elegy in Contemporary British and Irish Poetry

Defying critical suggestions that the pastoral elegy is obsolete, the author reveals the popularity of the form in the work of major contemporary poets Seamus Heaney, Ted Hughes and Paul Muldoon, Michael Longley, Douglas Dunn and Peter Reading. He outlines the development of the form, and identifies its characteristics and functions.
Pastoral Elegy in Contemporary British and Irish Poetry
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Defying critical suggestions that the pastoral elegy is obsolete, Iain Twiddy reveals the popularity of the form in the work of major contemporary poets Seamus Heaney, Ted Hughes and Paul Muldoon, Michael Longley, Douglas Dunn and Peter Reading. As Twiddy outlines the development of the form, he identifies its characteristics and functions. But more importantly his study accounts for the enduring appeal of the pastoral elegy, why poets look to its conventions during times of personal distress and social disharmony, and how it allows them to recover from grief, loss and destruction. Informed by current debates and contemporary theories of mourning, Twiddy discusses themes of war and peace, social pastoral and environmental change, draws on the enduring influence of both Classical and Romantic poetics and explores poets' changing relationships with pastoral elegy throughout their careers. The result is a study that demonstrates why the pastoral elegy is still a flourishing and dynamic form in contemporary British and Irish poetry.
Iain Twiddy is Associate Professor of English in the Faculty of Media and Communication at Hokkaido University, Japan.
Introduction: Contemporary Pastoral Elegy; 1. Inheritance and Commemoration: Memorial Landscapes in Michael Longley's Poetry; 2. Community Poetry 1: Pastoral Elegy in Ted Hughes' Remains of Elmet, Moortown Diary and River; 3. Community Poetry 2: Pastoral Elegy in Ted Hughes' Birthday Letters; 4. Leaving Home: Seamus Heaney's Parental Elegies; 5. Pastoral and Aftermath: Seamus Heaney; 6. 'Routine Periodic Faunal Extinctions': Peter Reading's Ecological Elegies; 7. Contemporary Female Poets and Pastoral Elegy; 8. Grief Brought to Numbers: Paul Muldoon's Circular Elegies; 9. The Ethics of Pastoral Elegy: Douglas Dunn and Christopher Reid; Conclusion: The Future of Pastoral Elegy; Bibliography; Index.
Author
Iain Twiddy
Year
2012
ISBN-10
1441139419
ISBN-13
9781441139412
Media
Book
Format
Hardcover
Publication Date
2012-03-01
Pages
296
Publisher
Continuum Publishing Corporation
Series
Continuum Literary Studies
Imprint
Continuum Publishing Corporation
Place of Publication
New York
Country of Publication
United States
DEWEY
821.9109
Illustrations
black & white illustrations
Short Title
PASTORAL ELEGY IN CONTEMP BRIT
Language
English
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