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Title: Everything UoB Collections Search For: evers blessed Clear Search Box Search Advanced Search Browse Search 'If it were not for all these blessed revolutions, I should sink into hopeless lethargy' : a comparison of British and American literary responses to the European revolutions of 1848-51
Author: Evers, Daniel
ISNI:       0000 0004 5919 9341
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
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I will compare British and American literary responses to the European revolutions of 1848-51, focussing particularly on the 1848 French and 1849 Italian revolutions. Such a comparison has not previously been made, despite the fact that writers on both sides of the Atlantic were inspired to think about political and social issues through the lens of mid-nineteenth-century European events. Although they often thought differently about revolutionary history and key ideas such as democracy and republicanism, many writers from Britain and America supported the European revolutions through their works. Some, including Arthur Hugh Clough, Margaret Fuller, Robert Browning, and Elizabeth Barrett Browning (EBB), witnessed the revolutions firsthand, either as travellers or expatriates. Even those who did not, such as Wait Whitman and Matthew Arnold, were affected by them and drew analogies between events in Europe and in their own countries. I argue that the European revolutions were central to the formation of some of the best-known works of nineteenth-century poetry, including Arthur Hugh Clough's Amours de Voyage (1849), EBB's Casa Guidi Windows (1848-5 1), and Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass (1855). The political influences that shaped these works have often been overlooked in literary history and criticism, and yet the political landscape was not only influential but vital to the creativity of writers in the mid-nineteenth century. My introduction outlines the intersection of politics and literature that occurred during the revolutions. Chapters on Arnold and Clough, on Margaret Fuller, on Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Robert Browning, and on Whitman, make the case for a political reading of the literary works I discuss. Although the thesis is author-based, I emphasise throughout the links between writers and texts, direct and indirect, which set them in dialogue with each other.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available