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Title: The Froward Master, or, F.T. Prince and the poetry of time
Author: Luck, Bevil
ISNI:       0000 0004 7967 068X
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2018
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The thesis is on the poems of F.T. Prince and is about time, and being out of time, or misplaced in time. It aims to build a way of reading that can help us to unlock or understand some of the peculiarities of Prince's poetry and thought. It is helped in this regard by the recent opening of the extraordinary Prince archive in the Hartley Library at Southampton. I make extensive use of new and unseen archival material in the hope of tracing the transformation or persistence of certain subterranean themes in Prince's work. My first chapter isolates two images that recur in Prince's early work: the double and the desert. Exploring these, it discovers a strange and hidden identityless world at the heart of Prince's thought. My second chapter finds that absence is not so unpeopled as it first seems, and discovers a hidden character, a simultaneous attraction and profound distrust towards 'pure poetry', and an unfinished ars poetica, all built into the structure of one poem. Chapters three, four, and five serve as the tripartite core of the thesis. They show how Prince developed a highly unusual approach to tradition and the poetry of the past, working to weave together strands that are discrete but sympathetic. They themselves then weave together to finish the unfinished ars poetica found in the second chapter, now with the missing element: the wound of meaning. In doing so they reveal a latent and powerful critique of certain trends in 20th-century poetry, using Igor Stravinsky and Pierre Menard as co-conspirators. The last two chapters demonstrate the threefold relationship between the wound in Prince's thought, his Catholicism, and time itself. The first shows how the images and paintings that populate Prince's poems (and they populate more poems than it might at first seem) must be understood in terms of iconoduly. The final chapter returns to the identityless world found in the first only to name it, and reveal that all time exists within its vast empire. It shows that Prince understood the power of poetry and meaning as descending from this world, and how he began to see himself, his reception and career, in these terms too, being a vindication of his work. Finally it reveals how his misplacement in time-and his interest in objects misplaced in time-was, in fact, emblematic of Time himself.
Supervisor: May, William ; Middleton, Peter Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available