The Resource Mind-forg'd manacles : slavery and the English romantic poets, Joan Baum

Mind-forg'd manacles : slavery and the English romantic poets, Joan Baum

Label
Mind-forg'd manacles : slavery and the English romantic poets
Title
Mind-forg'd manacles
Title remainder
slavery and the English romantic poets
Statement of responsibility
Joan Baum
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
The enslavement of Africans struck the young, hopeful, and radical Romantic poets of nineteenth-century England as the most blatant example of human oppression and the clearest instance in which humans were deprived of the liberty that could be found in their world. Always, their sympathies were for the victims of established oppression of all kinds and against the foes of freedom. But though their poetry refers to, talks about, and draws on the imagery of African slavery, the poets - Wordsworth, Coleridge, Keats, Byron, and Shelley - rarely speak directly against the harsh truths of the slave trade and colonial slavery, and then do so to no great effect. Why this should be so, what it can tell us both of society and of poetry, is the burden of Professor Baum's narrative. Most simply, the Romantic poets came to recognize political solutions as inevitable failures, and political poetry as not poetry at all, but versified propaganda that does not endure beyond timely or contemporary events and that cannot explore motives of deeper significance about the human condition. Meanwhile, radicals viewed concern for black slaves as a fanciful distraction obfuscating wage slavery, the oppression of the English working class, and the hellish life of the laboring masses during the Industrial Revolution. Following the Abolition of the Slave Trade (1807) the plight of the fettered African slaves in the West Indies faded into the larger concern over the "enslaved" masses in England. Though the poets and radicals used much the same language - "enchained," "enslaved," "dark," "Satanic"--The poets alone came to understand that all humans suffered the same plights: oppressors became victims of their oppression; those who sought salvation only through legislation fundamentally compromised their position. By contrast, the poets both sought and portrayed the struggle for an order of unfettered imaginative possibility, for a loosening of what Blake saw as the ultimate enslavement device, "mind-forg'd manacles." Drawing on unpublished and archival material from England and America, as well as on familiar poetry and prose, Professor Baum shows how it was a difficult moral, intellectual, and aesthetic agon the poets initiated, because it was so deeply centered on the individual imagination, and so thoroughly radical. In the end, they were unwilling to take satisfaction in the comfort of false, or even partially true solutions. Their creations remain vital and the story, which began 200 years ago, has telling implications for our time
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1937-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Baum, Joan
Index
no index present
LC call number
PR575.S53
LC item number
B38 1994
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • English poetry
  • Slavery in literature
  • Romanticism
  • esclavage
  • Lyrik
  • Sklaverei (Motiv)
  • English poetry
  • Romanticism
  • Slavery in literature
  • Englisch
  • Great Britain
Label
Mind-forg'd manacles : slavery and the English romantic poets, Joan Baum
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
23 cm
Extent
xiii, 253 pages
Isbn
9780208021878
Lccn
93045722
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
n
Other physical details
illustrations
System control number
  • (OCoLC)29563995
  • (OCoLC)ocm29563995
Label
Mind-forg'd manacles : slavery and the English romantic poets, Joan Baum
Publication
Bibliography note
Includes bibliographical references and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
23 cm
Extent
xiii, 253 pages
Isbn
9780208021878
Lccn
93045722
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
n
Other physical details
illustrations
System control number
  • (OCoLC)29563995
  • (OCoLC)ocm29563995

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