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26.11.2019

‘Keatswatch’ – a natural history game

by Gareth Evans   Let’s play a short game. Imagine you are sitting silently in a darkened room waiting for a small group of early Romantics to enter. First come Dorothy and William Wordsworth. Their footfalls are contrasting in tone, although from the many miles of walking they have undertaken together they are curiously co-ordinated. […]

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03.11.2019

‘Defiant and passionate’: a new production of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein

by Andrew Weltch Compared to the film adaptations, stage versions of Frankenstein are surprisingly rare, despite a near-90-year head-start. Or perhaps it’s not surprising: cinema has a much greater appetite for monsters, so our screens have seen Victor’s descendants continuing his work and his creature facing various challenges and enemies in ways even Mary Shelley […]

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23.09.2019

Wordsworth, Coleridge, and the power of perception

by Connor James   While discussing “fluxes… of the mind” in his Preface to the 1802 edition of Lyrical Ballads, Wordsworth draws attention to the mind as a faculty which is subject to constant change. This is evident in the familiar ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud,’ which, whether he would have liked it or […]

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09.09.2019

Did Coleridge have Lupus?

by Bethany Askew   Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, SLE or Lupus is a chronic, inflammatory, variable autoimmune disease of connective tissue, typically characterised by skin rash, fatigue, joint and muscle pain and often by disorders of the blood, kidneys, heart, lungs, and brain.   Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772 –1834) was an English poet, literary critic, philosopher […]

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23.08.2019

Five go mad at the Villa Diodati: Ken Russell’s ‘Gothic’

by Andrew Weltch   The creation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a fascinating tale in its own right. In the summer of 1816, Lord Byron invited fellow poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and his lover, 18-year-old Mary Godwin, to stay at the Villa Diodati near Lake Geneva, along with Mary’s’stepsister Claire Clairmont, and Byron’s physician friend […]

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09.07.2019

‘Echo and allusion’: Tennyson and Wordsworth

by Jayne Thomas   In his 1879 essay on Wordsworth, Matthew Arnold maintains that by the publication of Tennyson’s 1842 Poems ‘the ear and applause of the great body of poetry-readers’ turn decisively toward Tennyson and away from Wordsworth, a transition of which Wordsworth himself was perhaps aware. Aubrey de Vere records a meeting between […]

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16.06.2019

Childhood, Nature, Light and Sound:
Wordsworth and Mahler

by Fred Blick There is a rewarding connection between William Wordsworth’s literary work and Gustav Mahler’s musical compositions. They were both important exponents of Romanticism. Romantic artists throughout the nineteenth century were identifiable as being concerned with the pleasures, fears and pains of individuals and their relationship with Nature. I intend to show that the […]

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09.02.2019

Setting William Blake to music

by Joseph Andrew Thompson My introduction to William Blake came through a copy of Songs of Innocence and Experience, lent to me by a high-school friend. Over the course of a few weeks, I read it through and through, enchanted by its elegant simplicity. Visually, it had the magic of a book of fairy tales, […]

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