University of Leicester
Browse
Robinson review.docx (17.84 kB)

Book review - Jeffrey C. Robinson Poetic Innovation in Wordsworth’s Poetry, 1825–1833: Fibres of These Thoughts

Download (17.84 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2021-01-12, 16:11 authored by Philip Shaw
In the conclusion to his ground-breaking Wordsworth’s Poetry, 1787 − 1814 (1964), Geoffrey Hartman set out an influential critique of Wordsworth’s late poetry as a steady retreat from the ‘apocalyptic’ tendencies of the visionary imagination. While this claim has since been criticised as an instance of a-historical and a-political idealism—and, indeed, has been qualified by the critic himself—Hartman’s account of Wordsworth’s poetic decline has continued to influence readings of the later works, preventing readers from understanding their distinctive literary, political and philosophical preoccupations and from appreciating their artistic qualities. Two books published in 2019 have sought to challenge this view. As its title indicates, Tim Fulford’s Wordsworth’s Poetry, 1815-1845 (reviewed in RES. 70.297, pp. 982–84) responds directly to Hartman’s thesis, rejecting the imposition of a rigid, theoretical framework in favour of detailed, historically attuned close readings that recast the later poetry as ‘varied and surprising, rather than desiccated and reactionary’. In Poetic Innovation in Wordsworth, 1825-1833: Fibres of These Thoughts, Jeffrey C. Robinson undertakes an examination of an overlooked facing-page manuscript, linking it to other manuscripts and poems from the late 1820s and early 1830s, to ‘question the tenacity of the two shibboleths of the late Wordsworth’s reputation, his increasing political conservatism and religious orthodoxy’. [Opening paragraph]

History

Citation

The Review of English Studies, Volume 71, Issue 302, November 2020, Pages 1000–1003, https://doi.org/10.1093/res/hgaa028

Author affiliation

Department of English

Version

  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Published in

The Review of English Studies: the leading journal of English literature and language

Volume

71

Issue

302

Pagination

1000 - 1003

Publisher

Oxford University Press (OUP)

issn

0034-6551

Copyright date

2020

Available date

2022-04-01

Language

en

Usage metrics

    University of Leicester Publications

    Categories

    Exports

    RefWorks
    BibTeX
    Ref. manager
    Endnote
    DataCite
    NLM
    DC