Palgrave Studies in Nineteenth-Century Writing and Culture

Victorian Soul-Talk

Poetry, Democracy, and the Body Politic

Authors: Saville, Julia F.

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  • Argues that certain poets understood the rhetorical power of poetic soul-talk for challenging reductive reasoning, empty abstractions, and the depersonalizing effects of an increasingly mechanized, bureaucratized, and commercializing society 
    Addresses the lack of attention given to “soul” and the poetic “soul-talk” of democratically minded poets that co-existed with it 
    Looks at work by poets such as Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Arthur Hugh Clough, Robert Browning, Algernon Charles Swinburne and Walt Whitman

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  • ISBN 978-3-319-52506-8
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Hardcover £99.99
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Softcover £99.99
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About this book

This book explores the decades between the Reform Acts of 1832 and 1884 when British poets such as Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Arthur Hugh Clough, Robert Browning, and Algernon Charles Swinburne, along with their transatlantic contemporary Walt Whitman, defended the civil rights of disenfranchised souls as Western nations slowly evolved toward modern democracies with shared transnational connections. For in the decades before the new science of psychology transformed the soul into the psyche, poets claimed the spiritual well-being of the body politic as their special moral responsibility. Exploiting the rich aesthetic potential of language, they created poetry with striking sensory appeal to make their readers experience the complex effects of political decisions on public spirit.  Within contexts such as Risorgimento Italy, Civil War America, and Second Empire France, these poets spoke from their souls to the souls of their readers to reveal insights that eluded the prosaic forms of fiction, essay, and journalism.

About the authors

Julia F. Saville was educated at the University of Cape Town, South Africa and Stanford University, USA, and is currently Associate Professor of English at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA. She is the author of A Queer Chivalry: the Homoerotic Asceticism of Gerard Manley Hopkins (2000). 

Table of contents (7 chapters)

Table of contents (7 chapters)
  • Introduction: Poetic Soul-Talk and Civic Virtue

    Saville, Julia F.

    Pages 1-28

  • Transnational Republican and Feminist: The Political Ethics of Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s Soul Poetics

    Saville, Julia F.

    Pages 29-82

  • “Citizen Clough,” the “Soul’s Own Soul,” and the Dangers of Complying

    Saville, Julia F.

    Pages 83-130

  • “Talk inside the Soul” with Robert Browning’s “Saviour of Society”

    Saville, Julia F.

    Pages 131-170

  • “The Hum of Your Valvèd Voice”: Walt Whitman’s Soul and His Democratic Soul Politic

    Saville, Julia F.

    Pages 171-219

Buy this book

eBook £79.50
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-52506-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover £99.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-52505-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover £99.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-84918-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Victorian Soul-Talk
Book Subtitle
Poetry, Democracy, and the Body Politic
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Studies in Nineteenth-Century Writing and Culture
Copyright
2017
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-52506-8
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-52506-8
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-52505-1
Softcover ISBN
978-3-319-84918-8
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XII, 307
Topics