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Title: Two camps and the American family elegy after 1995
Author: Eaton, Andrew Deloss
ISNI:       0000 0004 5372 7078
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis combines creative and critical components. The creative is a poetry manuscript titled Two Camps, the critical an expository and formal study titled The American Family Elegy After 1995. The poems explore psychological tensions within family narrative via an elegiac conceit that interprets the voice of a central elegised figure within the supplemental voice of a poet-speaker. The manuscript title draws on the Book of Genesis concerning family, relocation and inheritance, pointing to tensions between territories of life and death as well as particular themes within the poems. These last include family relocation during the central elegiac figure's childhood, that same figure's internment in a prison camp during war, and the separation between elegiad figure and the lyric voice that elegises him. To situate this manuscript within a critical understanding of American elegy, the critical thesis comprises three chapters examining the American family elegy subgenre. Its first chapter analyses previous elegy criticism to highlight primary ways of interp,reting American family elegy beyond an axis of consolatory binaries. The second chapter examines Christian Wiman's The Long Home (1998) for its formal qualities as well as the structural arc it displays while questioning the poet's own capacity to 'learn to grieve' (Wiman, The Long Home, 17). Chapter three assesses Tracy K. Smith's collection Life on Mars (2011), its appropriation of pastoral tradition within elegy, and its revision of that tradition toward an acceptance of loss that renovates a didactic capacity for the elegy. Finally, a self-reflective essay connects the creative and critical components of this thesis, making explicit the biographical impetus of the creative work while demonstrating the interrelation between the creative manuscript and the critical study.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available