Literature and Nationalism by Vincent Newey

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Author
Vincent Newey
Publisher
Liverpool University Press
Date of release
Pages
296
ISBN
9780853230571
Binding
Hardcover
Illustrations
Format
PDF, EPUB, MOBI, TXT, DOC
Rating
3
27

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Book review

This collection of essays traces the representation of nationalism in a number of literary texts, ranging from the poems of Sir Thomas Wyatt written at the court of Henry VIII to the plays of Tom Murphy written in Ireland in the 1980s. These essays have been conceived in honor of Philip Edwards, whose "Threshold of a Nation: Studies in English and Irish Drama" (1979) explored the inter-relations between ideas of drama and ideas of nationhood or national identity in the age of Shakespeare and in the age of Yeats. They focus mainly on these two periods and on the troubled interaction between English and Irish nationalism, but Cowper, Coleridge, Byron and Strindberg are also featured. The writers discussed, whether they are ostensibly celebrating the innocent early days of English imperialism, reacting to the French Revolution and the rise and fall of Napoleon, or doggedly rewriting the story of "National Question" in Ireland, include those who are attracted by the glamour of nationalism and eager to participate in its rhetoric as well as those who are sceptical, cynical, even hostile. Nationalism can enter literature as panegyric or elegy, tragedy or farce.


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