Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Loving LiteratureA Cultural History$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Deidre Shauna Lynch

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780226183701

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226183848.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 27 January 2022

Poetry at Death’s Door

Poetry at Death’s Door

Chapter:
(p.235) Chapter Six Poetry at Death’s Door
Source:
Loving Literature
Author(s):

Deidre Shauna Lynch

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226183848.003.0007

To contextualize current laments over the death of literature and to explore literary studies’ longstanding investment in mournful feelings and tales of loss, this chapter returns to the canon-making projects treated in earlier chapters and explores their emotional fall-out. Those projects effectually made literature into a cultural space of posthumousness; they installed the barrier of death between dead poets and living readers. The chapter engages next with James Boswell’s Life of Johnson and Thomas De Quincey’s reminiscences of William Wordsworth, and considers these biographers’ proclivity for representing the authors who are their subjects not simply as their intimates but also as ghostly inhabitants of the afterlife. It concludes with Victorian editions of the romantic poets that ornamented the poetry with photographic illustrations that resemble the spirit photographs of the later nineteenth century. Identified as the most up-to-date technology, photography also serves within this volume to intimate poetry’s obsolescence and imminent extinction.

Keywords:   James Boswell, Samuel Johnson, Thomas De Quincey, William Wordsworth, ghost, mourning, photography, death

Chicago Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.