By Michael O’Neill (auth.)
In 'Percy Bysshe Shelly: A Literary existence' , Michael O'Neill supplies a educated and balanced account of Shelley's literary profession from his earliest released paintings to his final unfinished masterpiece, The Triumph of lifestyles . The e-book attracts on contemporary examine concerning the poet and his age, yet its experience of the ways that texts and contexts have interaction is sharply self sustaining. matters mentioned comprise Shelley's social historical past, his radical politics and his complicated reaction to Enlightenment rationalism. O'Neill stresses Shelley's usually disillusioned look for an viewers, connecting it with the turning out to be sophistication of his poetry and poetics. For Shelley, a poet used to be the 'combined product' of 'internal powers' and 'external affects' (Preface to Prometheus Unbound ); this e-book explores how this type of mixture manifests itself in his personal writings.
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Additional info for Percy Bysshe Shelley: A Literary Life
In both The Ruins and Queen Mab a panoramic vision of present and past civilisations is offered in which the oppressions and horror of the present are stressed, in which religion is attacked as 'superstition', and in which a more optimistic view of the future is vouchsafed. Exemplifying Shelley's independence, however, is his use of David Hume from whom he borrows the sceptical argument that 'we know "nothing more of causation than the constant conjunction of objects and the consequent inference of one from the other''' (PW, p.
More immediately, Shelley himself practised - in The Revolt of Islam and Prometheus Unbound what he preached to Byron. Certainly the post-war revival of literature based on assumptions antagonistic to the Revolution notably The Excursion and Coleridge's Biographia Literaria (1817)seems to have prompted in Shelley and writers with whom he associated, especially Peacock, a desire to mount a radical counteroffensive. Switzerland offered some detachment from immediate political events. Back in the England of 1816, Shelley would be caught up in 'the increasing politicisation of literature in England after 1814'P 1816-1818: 'Truth's Deathless Voice' 41 Shelley gives his view of the political state of things in 1816 in another letter to Byron, written on 20 November: Of course you have received intimations of the tumultuous state of England.
Unquestionably the Olliers were building up a good 'list', one that included Keats, Hunt and Hazlitt.
Percy Bysshe Shelley: A Literary Life by Michael O’Neill (auth.)