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October 23, 2002

Keats Redux

Friedrich --

Some helpful notes from readers about the poetry of John Keats.

Tim Hulsey (from Virginia) writes:

As for Keats, he's really not much in league with the Romantics, per se. He doesn't give you those grandiose, "change-the-world" fantasies you find in early Wordsworth, Coleridge, Byron and Shelley (Percy, not Mary). He's interested more in his own consciousness than the social order, and he's much more aware of the limitations of art. You might say that Keats is more individualized, more conservative in his claims for poetry. In short, he's closer to the Victorians than the Romantics.

And Peter Nicholson, an Australian poet (website here), asks:

Keats - too full on? Not really. Just working close to the edge where people aren't comfortable going - Wagner, Dickinson, Mahler, etc ?

A classy readership we have!



posted by Michael at October 23, 2002


The very notion of being primarily interested in one's own consciousness is an invention of the Romantic Age. It isn't concern with social justice that primarily defines the Romantics, it's their views on the artist's relationship to art.

Posted by: Drapetomaniac on October 24, 2002 4:25 PM

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