Darwin's bards : British and American poetry in the age of by John Holmes PDF

By John Holmes

ISBN-10: 0748640908

ISBN-13: 9780748640904

This paintings is a entire learn of ways poets have spoke back to the guidelines of Charles Darwin within the one hundred fifty years because the ebook of 'The foundation of Species'. Holmes argues that poetry may have a profound impression on how we predict and consider in regards to the Darwinian condition.

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Darwin's Bards is a finished research of ways poets have answered to the tips of Charles Darwin. Read more...

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Additional info for Darwin's bards : British and American poetry in the age of evolution

Example text

This poem responds to Darwinism in terms of evolution rather than natural selection. Outside our own ancestry, Archaeopteryx is the most famous ‘missing link’ in evolutionary history. One of the clear, testable predictions of Darwin’s theory of the origin of species was that fossil animals would be found which would combine features from distinct but related living types. Such finds would strongly suggest that the apparently fixed taxonomical boundaries between these types were the result of evolutionary divergence, not separate acts of creation.

It was their parents’ and grandparents’ controversy, not their own. Darwinian poetry did not become extinct, however. The poetic engagement with Darwinism which began in Victorian England took hold in the United States between the wars. Since the 1920s, religious belief has been a more contentious issue there than in Britain, and Darwinism has consequently been more hotly debated and aggressively interrogated there. It is largely because the religious seriousness that characterised the Victorians still pertains in the United States that the American poetry of Darwinism has been so substantial and profound.

Long since . . And now the same unrest Goads to the same invisible goal, Till some new gift, undreamed, unguessed, End the new travail of the soul. Like many writers before and since, Robinson transforms the narrative of evolution into a myth. Her originality lies in fusing a typical myth of evolutionary progress with imagery of the Fall, crucially the apple. At each stage of evolution, Robinson suggests, there is a loss of innocence as well as an advance. Progress requires a cycle of dissatisfaction as a stimulus.

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Darwin's bards : British and American poetry in the age of evolution by John Holmes


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