Keats and Philosophy The Life of Sensations
John Keats remains one of the most familiar and beloved of English poets, but has received surprisingly little critical attention in recent years. This study is a fresh contribution to Keats criticism and Romantic scholarship, positioning Keats as a figure of philosophical interest who warrants renewed attention.
Exploring Keats’s own Romantic accounts of feeling and thinking, this study draws a connection between poetry and the phenomenological branches of modern philosophy. The study takes Keats’s poetic evocation of touching hands, wandering feet, beating hearts and breathing bodies as a descriptive elaboration of consciousness and a phenomenological account of experience. The philosophical terms of analysis adopted here challenge the orthodoxies of Keats scholarship, traditionally characterised by the careful historicisation of a limited canon. The philosophical framework of analysis enhances the readings put forward, while Keats’s poems, in turn, serve to give fuller expression of those ideas themselves. Using Keats as a particular case, this book also demonstrates the ways in which theory and philosophy supplement literary scholarship.
'... there is much to admire in this provocative study, which ultimately develops a sound understanding of its intellectual field and makes a valid and worthwhile contribution to knowledge in the subject area.' - BARS