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By A. Vardy

John Clare, Politics and Poetry demanding situations the conventional portrait of "poor John Clare", the helpless sufferer of non-public situation. Clare's profession has been provided as a catastrophe of editorial heavy-handedness, condescension, a negative industry, and conservative patronage. but Clare was once now not a passive sufferer. This learn explores the assets of the "poor Clare"' culture, and recovers Clare's employer, revealing a author absolutely engaged in his personal specialist lifestyles and within the social and political questions of the day.

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He decries the poet’s lack of reflection concerning the actual conditions of the gypsies’ lives, that they ‘might probably have been tramping for weeks together through road and lane, over moor and mountain, and consequently must have been right glad to rest themselves’ (p. 137). 26 John Clare, Politics and Poetry Coleridge persuasively demonstrates that the poem is objectionable on both grounds (the aesthetic and the social). From a social perspective, in particular, Wordsworth, in attempting to assert his moral superiority, inadvertently expressed the opposite.

Class-bound aesthetics dominate critical judgements of Clare’s career and poetry from the beginning. Yet despite his almost total lack of cultural power, Clare developed a poetics that both confounded the conservative aesthetics that authorised his career, and challenged the very assumptions that reviewers claimed were integral to an appreciation of his work. ∗ Clare’s peasant background inevitably played a part in Taylor’s account of the typical composition of a poem: ‘Most of the poems were composed under the immediate impression of this feeling [the love of nature], in the fields, or on the roadside’ (p.

This Coleridgean distinction provides a succinct expression of the aesthetic divide between Clare and mainstream Romantic aesthetics. His insistence on the truth of his poetic representations is in direct opposition of the construction of the poetic self that dominates the poetics of both Wordsworth and Coleridge. What is euphemistically called pleasure in Coleridge’s distinction refers to the aesthetic process by which the poet affects self-creation through poetic creation. An ‘immediate object’ is too easily grasped to afford the ‘pleasures’ of the sublime or the beautiful.

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