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Title: The genesis of Clough's poetry
Author: McGrane, Paul Steven
ISNI:       0000 0000 9569 8544
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis examines the early poetry of Clough, written between 1830 and 1841, in the light of the information about his personal and intellectual life provided by published and unpublished manuscripts, essays, letters and diaries. More specifically, it sets out to determine the degree to which the seeds (thematic and formal) of Clough’s more mature work can be discerned in the earlier. Chapter One discusses the influence of Clough’s childhood reading, and particularly the heroic ideal as encouraged by his mother. It traces the way this developed, particularly under the historical ideas of Thomas Arnold and the Liberal Anglicans, and the fatalistic moral problems this created. Chapter Three considers Clough’s responses to the Oxford Movement. It teases out those elements that attracted Clough and those he came to reject, particularly in the light of Tractarian ideas about reserve, in relation to poetry, truth and personal behaviour. Chapters Two and Four provide chronological, text-by-text accounts of the Rugby and Balliol poems respectively, offering judgments about influences, dates and sources, and interpretations in the light of Chapters One and Three respectively. Chapter Two argues that much of the Rugby poetry reflects an escapist lament for the past and a failure of will to restore it. Chapter Three argues that Clough’s engagement with Tractarian ideas about reserved truth provides the key context for many of these poems. Chapter Five traces the way in which Clough’s early poetics, derived from Wordsworth via Thomas Arnold, were gradually replaced by his more mature, ambiguous approach which also emerged from his encounters with Tractarian reserve. Two appendices collect ten poems and poetic fragments omitted from Mulhauser’s standard edition; three additional variant texts for poems included by Mulhauser; and four previously unpublished letters to Clough from his friend WilliamTylden.
Supervisor: Reynolds, Matthew Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: English Language and Literature ; Clough