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Title: The shifting centre : an approach to regional pressures on British poetry since 1945
Author: Davies, R. D.
Awarding Body: University College of Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1980
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The Introduction discusses the semantic and contextual problems of the term 'regional', giving some attention to its reception within the Anglo-Welsh critical school, as well as its antithetical relation to a supposed metropolitan 'centre'. It is argued that regional poetry has been produced in conditions less open to directive editorial influence than those prevailing in London since the late thirties. The thesis revolves around the work of four poets: Norman Nicholson, George Mackay Brown, R.S. Thomas and Jack Clemo (in the order discussed). In Part One, 'The Christian Regional Poets', their work is seen in terms of its merging of Christian faith and regional setting, with one chapter devoted specifically to the stylistic effects of their recurrent use of certain selected groups of words or lexical fields. Part Two, 'Dilemmas of Rootedness', considers Patricia Beer, Lain Crichton Smith, John Montague and Seamus Heaney whose poetry illustrates a degree of detachment from the regional background through education, travel, or an empiricist and internationalist outlook. Part Three, 'The Urban Provincials', traces the development of a regional and anti-metropolitan voice in Liverpool and Newcastle-upon-Tyne, where poets have been essentially more group-oriented and, perhaps surprisingly, more aware of American innovations with regard to form. The Conclusion enlarges upon the question of 'belief' in modern poetry, drawing a distinction between the conditions which might produce any single poem, and those which could be thought a prerequisite to the consistent poetic career. It is argued that the selective and consciously limited art of the Christian regional poets has ensured them a distinctiveness unattainable by either the 'rooted' or urban provincial groups, and reflected a sense of vocation significant to British poetry in general since 1945.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available