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Romanticism in the Shadow of War
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Book description

Jeffrey N. Cox reconsiders the history of British Romanticism, seeing the work of Byron, the Shelleys, and Keats responding not only to the 'first generation' Romantics led by Wordsworth, but more directly to the cultural innovations of the Napoleonic War years. Recreating in depth three moments of political crisis and cultural creativity - the Peace of Amiens, the Regency Crisis, and Napoleon's first abdication - Cox shows how 'second generation' Romanticism drew on cultural 'border raids', seeking a global culture at a time of global war. This book explores how the introduction on the London stage of melodrama in 1803 shaped Romantic drama, how Barbauld's prophetic satire Eighteen Hundred and Eleven prepares for the work of the Shelleys, and how Hunt's controversial Story of Rimini showed younger writers how to draw on the Italian cultural archive. Responding to world war, these writers sought to embrace a radically new vision of the world.

Reviews

'… richly rewarding … Couched in lucid prose that eschews academese without detracting from the scholasticism of Cox's undertaking, Romanticism in the Shadow of War wholly encompasses the richness of the era and its literary culture.'

Neil Fitzgerald Source: The Times Literary Supplement

'… a charming, a fascinating, and a groundbreaking read.'

Cian Duffy Source: Notes and Queries

'Jeffrey Cox has written an elegant and persuasive book about literary genres considered as cultural maneuvers on the English home front during the course of the Napoleonic Wars strictly defined, 1800–15.'

Kenneth R. Johnston Source: The BARS Review

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