new in theses & dissertations

Donaldson, Christopher. 2012. “The Local Poet in the Romantic Tradition”. PhD, Stanford University.

Many poems evoke a sense of place; few poems, however, forge a lasting connection between a poet and a particular locale. In The Local Poet in the Romantic Tradition, I chart the evolution of this latter type of poetry and document its influence on readerly tastes in Britain over the last two hundred and fifty years. Parting ways with previous studies, I take the view that local poetry is defined less by its invocation of specifically named locations, or even by a proclivity for amassing topographical detail, than by the cultivation of a special kind of poetic ethos. Drawing on the works of William Wordsworth as well as a range of pre- and post-Romantic poets, I examine different instantiations of this ethos and outline the contours of the tradition of local poetry in Britain from its origins in the eighteenth century to its rise to prominence in the Victorian era.

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