A Careful Longing: The Poetics and Problems of Nostalgia

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University of Delaware Press, 2006 - 221 páginas
This book examines the emergence of a new genre during the eighteenth century: the nostalgia poem. This genre is best understood by reconceiving the premises of nostalgia itself, examining it as first and foremost a mode of idealization rather than a longing for the past. From the poems that make up this genre, we have derived many of our modern ideas and images of nostalgia. In tracing the history of the nostalgia poem, this book also traces a pattern of "tropic change," in which a new genre is built around tropes extracted from the dying genres. This new genre then begins producing its own tropes; in the case of the nostalgia poem, these include idealized school days and ruined villages. As these tropes become overly familiar, the nostalgia poem genre itself begins to fall apart. This book reevaluates poems ranging from Dryden's Hastings elegy to Crabbe's The Village, showing how works as varied as Gray's Eton College Ode, Macpherson's forged epics, and Goldsmith's The Deserted Village are all part of a doomed literary experiment--an experiment that has nevertheless determined the course of modern nostalgic thought.

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Índice

Acknowledgments
7
Elegiac and Pastoral Nostalgia
27
Gray and the Emergence of the Modern Nostalgia Poem
56
Varieties of Historical Nostalgia from Gray to Beattie
88
Goldsmith and the Poetics of Nostalgia
122
Cowper Crabbe and MockNostalgia
150
The Present and Future of Nostalgia
182
Bibliography
211
Página de créditos

Términos y frases comunes

Pasajes populares

Página 67 - Say, Father Thames, for thou hast seen Full many a sprightly race Disporting on thy margent green The paths of pleasure trace, Who foremost now delight to cleave With pliant arm thy glassy wave ? The captive linnet which enthrall?
Página 138 - How often have I blest the coming day, When toil remitting lent its turn to play, And all the village train, from labour free, Led up their sports beneath the spreading tree...
Página 140 - A time there was, ere England's griefs began, When every rood of ground maintained its man; For him light labour spread her wholesome store, Just gave what life required, but gave no more: His best companions, innocence and health; And his best riches, ignorance of wealth.
Página 193 - The business of a poet," said Imlac, "is to examine, not the individual, but the species ; to remark general properties and large appearances ; he does not number the streaks of the tulip, or describe the different shades in the verdure of the forest.
Página 141 - Altama murmurs to their woe. Far different there from all that charm'd before, The various terrors of that horrid shore; Those blazing suns that dart a downward ray, And fiercely shed intolerable day; Those matted woods where birds forget to sing.
Página 11 - Dear lovely bowers of innocence and ease, Seats of my youth, when every sport could please...
Página 80 - Where shaggy forms o'er ice-built mountains roam, The Muse has broke the twilight gloom To cheer the shivering native's dull abode. And oft, beneath the odorous shade Of Chili's boundless forests laid, She deigns to hear the savage youth repeat, In loose numbers wildly sweet, Their feather-cinctured chiefs, and dusky loves.
Página 131 - ... nation knows. In florid beauty groves and fields appear ; Man seems the only growth that dwindles here. Contrasted faults through all his manners reign : Though poor, luxurious ; though submissive, vain ; Though grave, yet trifling ; zealous, yet untrue ; And e'en in penance, planning sins anew.
Página 138 - Sweet smiling village, loveliest of the lawn, Thy sports are fled, and all thy charms withdrawn; Amidst thy bowers the tyrant's hand is seen, And desolation saddens all thy green: One only master grasps the whole domain, And half a tillage stints thy smiling plain: No more thy glassy brook reflects the day, But choked with sedges, works its weedy way.
Página 74 - For them no more the blazing hearth shall burn, Or busy housewife ply her evening care : No children run to lisp their sire's return, Or climb his knees the envied kiss to share.

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