The Rhythms of English Poetry

Routledge
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Examines the way in which poetry in English makes use of rhythm. The author argues that there are three major influences which determine the verse-forms used in any language: the natural rhythm of the spoken language itself; the properties of rhythmic form; and the metrical conventions which have grown up within the literary tradition. He investigates these in order to explain the forms of English verse, and to show how rhythm and metre work as an essential part of the reader's experience of poetry.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Routledge
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Published on
Jul 10, 2014
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Pages
410
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ISBN
9781317869511
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Language
English
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Genres
Language Arts & Disciplines / General
Language Arts & Disciplines / Linguistics / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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The contemporary reader of English poetry is able to take pleasure in the sounds and movements of the English language in works written over the past eight centuries, and to find poems that convey powerful emotions and vivid images from this entire period. This book investigates the ways in which poets have exploited the resources of the language as a spoken medium - its characteristic rhythms, its phonetic qualities, its deployment of syntax - to write verse that continues to move and delight. The chapters in the first of the two parts examine a number of issues relating to poetic form: the resurgence of interest in formal questions in recent years, the role of syntactic phrasing in the operation of poetry, the function of rhyme, and the relation between sound and sense. The second part is concerned with rhythm and metre, explaining and demonstrating 'beat prosody' as a tool of poetic analysis, and discussing three major traditions in English versification: the free four-beat form used in much popular verse, the controlled power of the iambic pentameter, and the twentieth-century invention of free verse. All these topics are discussed by means of particular case studies, from the metrical form of a thirteenth-century lyric to uses of sound in recent poetry. Among the many poets whose work is considered are Spenser, Milton, Dryden, Keats, Tennyson, Hardy, Yeats, Frost, Ashbery, Hill, Plath, Paterson, and Prynne. Drawing on Derek Attridge's forty-five years of engagement with the forms of poetry, this volume provides extensive evidence of the importance of close attention to the moving and sounding of language in the poems we enjoy.
A Preface to Oscar Wilde provides a detailed study of the cultural, personal and political influences that shaped Wilde's writing. The study concentrates primarily on his fiction, critical dialogues and plays that were published between 1890 and 1895, and detailed accounts of Wilde's lesser known works such as his poetry, journalism and letters are also presented. The first section places his work in a variety of cultural contexts: Wilde's family life and his Irish inheritance are examined, the impact of his sexuality on his writing and reputation is considered, and a description is provided of how Wilde became a legendary figure in the arts. Major innovations and successes, such as The Picture of Dorian Gray, Salome and The Importance of Being Earnest are related to avant garde movements of their day such as aestheticism, decadence, and symbolism. Reference sections provide supporting material such as a Wilde chronology, a glossary of terms and a bibliography for further study.

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The fourth edition has been thoroughly but respectfully revised by Joseph Bizup and William T. FitzGerald. It retains the original five-part structure, as well as the sound advice of earlier editions, but reflects the way research and writing are taught and practiced today. Its chapters on finding and engaging sources now incorporate recent developments in library and Internet research, emphasizing new techniques made possible by online databases and search engines. Bizup and FitzGerald provide fresh examples and standardized terminology to clarify concepts like argument, warrant, and problem.

Following the same guiding principle as earlier editions—that the skills of doing and reporting research are not just for elite students but for everyone—this new edition retains the accessible voice and direct approach that have made The Craft of Research a leader in the field of research reference. With updated examples and information on evaluation and using contemporary sources, this beloved classic is ready for the next generation of researchers.
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