Visionary Rhyme

Jerrold E. Hogle

in The Oxford Handbook of Percy Bysshe Shelley

Published in print December 2012 | ISBN: 9780199558360
Published online January 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

Visionary Rhyme

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  • Literary Studies (19th Century)
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This chapter analyses two of Shelley's poems, The Sensitive-Plant and The Witch of Atlas. It argues that both poems demonstrate Shelley's capacity to explode restrictive patterns in the many forms of hierarchical writing he knew, so as to produce ‘visionary’ correctives of transference and transformation which decentre his readers away from such older confines. Yet these same two poems also remind us of what we need to keep working to escape: our temptations towards the excessive domination of the world empowered by centred systems of myth, belief, and poetic form that can still entrap us and control us, and make us try to control others, if we choose to let such visions be the lenses through which we keep viewing human, and even cosmic, existence.

Keywords: Percy Bysshe Shelley; English poets; Romantic poets; poems; hierarchical writing; transference; transformation

Article.  8508 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (19th Century) ; Literary Studies (Poetry and Poets)

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