The Romantic Poets: Revolution and Retrospection
This seminar focuses on the six poets (one recently rediscovered) who most defined English Romanticism in poetry and verse drama between 1798 and 1824. It emphasizes their philosophical, emotional, and stylistic tugs-of-war, despite their quite different politics: first, between proposals for revolutions in social organization and how individuals relate to the wider world (they all knew the American and French revolutions of the 1770s-90s), and second, retrogressive longings for earlier orders of being and poetic styles whose revivals promised a better world than the emerging one of rapid social changes and aggressive industrialism. Each class examines their most progressive and simultaneously regressive tendencies, the special paradoxes that still make these poets so revealing about the post-Enlightenment dawning of the modern world. The six poets are: Wordsworth, Coleridge, Mary Robinson, Byron, Keats, and Shelley.
JERROLD E. HOGLE (Ph.D., Harvard University) is UA Distinguished Professor in English. Former President of the International Gothic Association and a Guggenheim, Mellon, and Huntington Library Fellow for research–and recent winner of the Distinguished Scholar Award from the Keats-Shelley Association of America–he has published widely on Romantic poetry and theater, literary and cultural theory, and the Gothic. In addition, he is the winner of many teaching awards.