MARY SHELLEY’S “FRANKENSTEIN”: THE CREATION MYTH DEVELOPED BY CULTURAL MARXISM.

Between the eighties and nineties I was not much involved with academic life. When I returned to teach Open University students a course on “Approaches to Literature” I was surprised to discover that a novel I had thought to be on the periphery of literary focus had become a central part of the curriculum. Earlier,Continue reading “MARY SHELLEY’S “FRANKENSTEIN”: THE CREATION MYTH DEVELOPED BY CULTURAL MARXISM.”

FILMING THE ALPS IN WORDS: FRANKENSTEIN

FROM PICTURESQUE TO SUBLIME: MARY SHELLEY “The next day we pursued our journey upon mules; and as we ascended still higher, the valley assumed a more magnificent and astonishing character; and as we ascended still higher, the valley assumed a more magnificent and astonishing character. Ruined castles hanging on precipices of piny mountains; the impetuousContinue reading “FILMING THE ALPS IN WORDS: FRANKENSTEIN”

“HIM WHO FIRST DESCRIBED WHAT PICTURESQUE BEAUTY WAS”: JANE AUSTEN AND WILLIAM GILPIN (2)

Marianne’s sensitivity to the beauty of the landscape (see post “Jane Austen and the Picturesque”) shows her feeling for the picturesque, a pre-Romantic era concept, that developed in popularity through the eighteenth century. That it is a fashionable tendency is due largely to the work of William Gilpin(1724-1804). Gilpin distinguishes picturesque beauty from natural beautyContinue reading ““HIM WHO FIRST DESCRIBED WHAT PICTURESQUE BEAUTY WAS”: JANE AUSTEN AND WILLIAM GILPIN (2)”

WHILST BROWSING: A NOTE ON DOSTOEVSKY’S DEMONS

“In the nineteenth century Russia under the influence of their progressive parents, a generation of educated young people was convinced of the illegitimacy of the Tsarist regime. Dostoevsky’s “Demons” (1871) is a vivid chronicle of the tragic and farcical process by which progressive liberals discredited traditional institutions and unleashed a wave of revolutionary terror. NotContinue reading “WHILST BROWSING: A NOTE ON DOSTOEVSKY’S DEMONS”

ON THE PICTURESQUE: JANE AUSTEN

From Sense and Sensibility “Edward returned to them with fresh admiration of the surrounding country; in his walk to the village, he had seen many parts of the valley to advantage; and the village itself, in a much higher situation than the cottage, afforded a general view of the whole, which had exceedingly pleased him.Continue reading “ON THE PICTURESQUE: JANE AUSTEN”

LOOKING AT THE WORD “ROMANTIC”(1)

You all know the word “romantic” and it arouses all kinds of expectations. It is that kind of word. But where did it come from and how did it develop? It is an interesting story. In the last blog while I used the word ” Romantic” I was very conscious how complex a word itContinue reading “LOOKING AT THE WORD “ROMANTIC”(1)”

MAKING THE NOVEL ROMANTIC

From Charlotte Bronte responding to G. H. Lewes (respected Victorian critic to become George Eliot’s partner) who had recommended her to read Jane Austen. I got the book (ie. Pride and Prejudice) and studied it. What did I find? An accurate daguerrotyped portrait of a commonplace face; a carefully fenced garden with neat borders andContinue reading “MAKING THE NOVEL ROMANTIC”

SIR GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT

The great medieval English poem was discussed on Melvyn Bragg’s “In Our Time” with guests, including Simon Armitage, the Poet Laureate and recent translator of the work . (Check the BBC Radio 4 website if you wish to listen to the programme) The development of the strands of English into the language we know, isContinue reading “SIR GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT”