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Title: Review of 'Re-reading The Excursion: Narrative, Response and the Wordsworthian Dramatic Voice', by Sally Bushnell. Aldershot, Hants. Ashgate, 2002
Contributor(s): Ryan, John S  (author)
Publication Date: 2002
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Abstract: This exciting study by the Co-Director of the Wordsworth Centre at Lancaster University is the product of the writer's Cambridge doctoral thesis and of her preparation as co-editor of the unpublished manuscript transcriptions from the forthcoming Cornell edition of 'The Excursion'. This makes the book richly insightful of the various published and manuscript versions of this too neglected Wordsworthian text. ... Clearly 'The Excursion', in the last analysis, is a representative yet personal experience narrative, following certain traditional norms for performance, providing in depth a revelation of the social life and values of its community, drawing on the experience of a particular person, the poet, telling of the functional/moral norms of a small community, in a remembered period. Yet this narrative memory is not for a specific audience, since the Poet has here transformed the spoken records for a timeless audience, and, in Books VIII and IX, for a national one. This cogent and dynamic interpretation by Sally Bushnell, one both cogently argued, and irresistibly persuasive, shows the poem to be powerfully aware of natural life and to project an essential optimism, to counter the very real suffering of so many. In short, both the critic and the poet have succeeded brilliantly in their task of reading poetry back into real life, and in illumining the soul of man in a time of so much martial and social tumult.
Publication Type: Review
Source of Publication: Australasian Victorian Studies Association Journal, v.8, p. 118-120
Publisher: University of New England
Place of Publication: Australia
ISSN: 1327-8746
Field of Research (FOR): 190502 Fine Arts (incl Sculpture and Painting)
190104 Visual Cultures
190101 Art Criticism
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 959999 Cultural Understanding not elsewhere classified
950403 Environmental Ethics
950104 The Creative Arts (incl. Graphics and Craft)
HERDC Category Description: D3 Review of Single Work
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