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Victorian Poetry (Part I Tennyson, Browning, Arnold)

Conceptual peculiarities: Privacy & subjectivity of vision (to withstand the positivist empirical urge o objectify reality) Prophecy, prediction, sagehood Supremacy of the imagination Artistic consciousness negating philistinism Elegiac moods; a feeling of living in exile: the poet is an asylum-seeker Medievalist inclinations Biblical borrowings & references to classical texts and images Pathetic fallacy (conferring human feeling onto the non-human world: anthropomorphism + psychological depth) Femininity is seen as both productive & protective, as well as threatening (tempting) and destructive Interest in the structure of human consciousness (and its darkest abodes) Spasmodic poetry Mourning innocence long lost; retreat into a harmonious Medieval/ Classical Past The dialogue of the mind with itself in a state between one world dead, the other powerless to be born (Matthew Arnold) Dramatic monologue (an obvious address to an auditor; also termed dramatic romance/ idyll; dramatic lyrics/ monodrama; the speaker seeks to achieve personal inner transformation; conversational value; expecting moral partiality from the reader/ auditor; redemption by speaking; internal incarceration of the soul; dramatization of thoughts; desperate solitude; destabilization of the Self; creating images of the mind) Radical poetry: William Johnson Fox (edited The Monthly Repository); Robert Browning etc.); dissemination of pleasure; democratization of literature (intertextual, social-referential); working-class art; dissenting beliefs; expression of extreme emotions; associationism; interest in foreign literatures & cultures; Conservative Poetry: 1830s The Cambridge Apostles (Alfred Tennyson, Arthur Hallam etc.); Wordsworthian-Germano-Coleridgean traditional idealism; repudiation of direct political reformism; cultural fracture & alienation; revival of peasant imagination & mythologies; reliance on pure sciences in studying the human mind and the human self & environment; the politics of privacy regulates the poetic imagination; Arnold: cultural alienation; spiritual impoverishment; dwindling hope; historical oblivion; breach in communal values;

Alfred Tennyson (1809-92) 1830 Poems, Chiefly Lyrical (Mariana; The Kraken, Supposed Confessions of a Second-Rate Sensitive Mind; Song) 1832 Poems (The Lotos-Eaters; The Lady of Shalott) 1842 Poems in Two Volumes (Locksley Hall; Ulysses; Break, Break, Break; Morte DArthur; Dora; Sir Galahad) 1847 The Princess, A Medley 1850 In Memoriam 1855 The Charge of the Last Brigade 1855 Maud 1864 Enoch Arden 1869; 1889 Idylls of the King 1889 Crossing the Bar

Robert Browning (1812-1889) 1835 Paracelsus 1840 Sordello 1842 Dramatic Lyrics (Porphyrias Lover; My Last Duchess) 1841 Pippa Passes 1845 The Bishop Orders His Tomb at St Praxeds Church 1846 Bells and Pomegranates 1855 Men and Women (Andrea Del Sarto; Fra Lippo Lippi; Childe Roland to the dark Tower Came) 1864 Dramatis Personae 1868-69 The Ring and the Book 1879 Dramatic Idylls

Matthew Arnold (1822-88) 1849 The Forsaken Merman 1853 Empedocles on Etna, and Other Poems 1854 Sohrab and Rustim; The Scholar Gipsy 1867 Dover Beach