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The Lesbian Muse and Poetic Identity, 1889–1930


Gender and Genre: 12

Sarah Parker

240pp: 234x156mm: 2013
HB 978 1 84893 386 6: £60/$99

eBook: £24 (incl. VAT)
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'the study highlights the importance of the muse to the creative process of poetry and poetic identity ... makes an important contribution to current research into female same-sex desire and the female gaze in poetry.'

Women: A Cultural Review


  • Description
  • Contents
  • Author/Editor
  • Reviews
Throughout history the poetic muse has tended to be (a passive) female and the poet male. This dynamic caused problems for late Victorian and twentieth-century women poets; how could the muse be reclaimed and moved on from the passive role of old? Parker looks at fin-de-siècle and modernist lyric poets to investigate how they overcame these challenges and identifies three key strategies: the reconfiguring of the muse as a contemporary instead of a historical/mythological figure; the muse as a male figure; and an interchangeable poet/muse relationship, granting agency to both.
Introduction
1 Historical Muse Figures, Imagined Ancestries and Contemporary Muses
2 Michael Field
3 Olive Custance
4 Amy Lowell
5 H.D. and Bryher
Conclusion
Sarah Parker, University of Stirling
  • 'the study highlights the importance of the muse to the creative process of poetry and poetic identity ... makes an important contribution to current research into female same-sex desire and the female gaze in poetry.'

    Women: A Cultural Review

  • 'looks at the lyric poetry of a series of female poets working around the turn of the century, to investigate the ways in which these poets interacted with living muses.'

    Studies in English Literature, 1500–1900

ISBNs: 9781848933866 978-1-84893-386-6 ISBNs: 9781781440223 978-1-78144-022-3 ISBNs: 9781781443873 978-1-78144-387-3

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