1st Edition

An Analysis of William Wordsworth's Preface to The Lyrical Ballads

ISBN 9781912453146
Published May 2, 2018 by Macat Library
92 Pages

USD $8.95

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Book Description

Central to the creative process of the Romantic poets that followed him, Wordsworth’s Preface to the Lyrical Ballads has been both a gift and a thorn in the side of critics for over a century. Readers find themselves drawn back to the essay repeatedly as they seek to untangle the ideas and contradictions within it. The Preface is a statement of Wordsworth’s poetic vision and offers an explanation of the poetic process behind the poems, which fused the rusticity of the ballad form with the psychological introspection of modernity.

But to the generation of Romantic writers that emerged in its wake, the Preface announced a new understanding of the creative process and of the high purposes of poetry: to reveal the human condition, and to awaken in its readers the profoundest emotions and the most enduring truths of existence.

Table of Contents

Ways in to the Text 

Who was William Wordsworth? 

What does Preface to the Lyrical Ballads Say? 

Why does Preface to the Lyrical Ballads Matter? 

Section 1: Influences  

Module 1: The Author and the Historical Context 

Module 2: Academic Context 

Module 3: The Problem 

Module 4: The Author's Contribution 

Section 2: Ideas 

Module 5: Main Ideas 

Module 6: Secondary Ideas  

Module 7: Achievement 

Module 8: Place in the Author's Work 

Section 3: Impact  

Module 9: The First Responses  

Module 10: The Evolving Debate 

Module 11: Impact and Influence Today 

Module 12: Where Next?  

Glossary of Terms 

People Mentioned in the Text 

Works Cited

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Dr. Alex Latter completed his PhD at the Contemporary Poetics Research Centre at Birkbeck, University of London, where his thesis looked at postwar British poetry. He is the author of Late Modernism and The English Intelligencer: On the Poetics of Community (2015).

Rachel Teubner is a PhD candidate at the University of Virginia. She teaches courses in Christian thought and in religion and literature, and is the author of A Macat Analysis of T.S. Eliot’s The Sacred Wood (Routledge, 2014).