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Improprieties : Politics and Sexuality in Northern Irish Poetry - Clair Wills


Politics and Sexuality in Northern Irish Poetry

Paperback Published: 25th November 1993
ISBN: 9780198182399
Number Of Pages: 270

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This is an innovative and accessible study of contemporary Northern Irish poetry in the light of current debates about post-modernism, poetry and politics, and the figure of woman in Irish political discourse. Close readings of the work of Tom Paulin, Medbh McGuckian, and Paul Muldoon focus on the `improper' elements of the poetry: the refusal of a sense of home, the disruption of `traditional' poetic form, and the sexual narratives told.The intersections between post-modern literary form and post-coloniality are currently a focus of intense concern, but they have rarely been addressed in the context of Irish culture. Clair Wills focuses on Northern Irish poetry in her exploration of the complex relationship between an `international' poetic form and its national context. She assesses the relation between poetry and politics in Ireland; the limits of `Enlightenment' and `Romantic' influences on Irish culture; the nature of political violence; femininity in Irish political discourse; and the division between public and private spheres of activity. These discussions culminate in extended analyses of the work of Paulin, McGuckian, and Muldoon, showing that their work cannot be understood without a redefinition of the relationship between poetry and politics.Improprieties is a much-needed evaluation of Northern Irish poetry, distinguished by its critical sophistication and lucid readings of three notoriously complex but hugely important poets.

Industry Reviews

'Wills's book touches on areas of importance for readers of what might be called the post-Heaney generation of Northern Irish poets, and it airs problems about the place of the feminine or the private in this work which could be of some significance.' Peter McDonald, Irish Review

Introductionp. 1
The Politics of Poetic Formp. 13
Women Poets: The Privatization of Mythp. 47
Language Politics, Narrative, Political Violencep. 78
Tom Paulin: Enlightening the Tribep. 121
Medbh McGuckian: The Intimate Spherep. 158
Paul Muldoon: Dubious Originsp. 194
Conclusionp. 236
Select Bibliographyp. 243
Indexp. 257
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780198182399
ISBN-10: 0198182392
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 270
Published: 25th November 1993
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 21.59 x 13.34  x 2.03
Weight (kg): 0.37