Victorian Culture Wars: Alexander Smith, Arthur Hugh Clough, and Matthew Arnold in 1853

Victorian Culture Wars: Alexander Smith, Arthur Hugh Clough, and Matthew Arnold in 1853 ANTONY H. HARRISON MATTHEW A RNOLD WAS PUBLISHING HIS FIRST TWO VOLUMES of poetry (anonymously, in 1849 and 1852), he appears to have been fighting what we might well perceive, early in the twenty-first century, as a culture war. Arnold's famous "Preface" to his 1853 Poems suggests that the most powerful enemies of the poetic principles he formulates there, and (as I hope to demonstrate) of his foundational philosophical, moral, and spiritual values, are the phenomenally popular Spasmodic poets, or, as Arnold terms them in his "Preface," "the school of Keats." In fact, Arnold's "Preface," which has traditionally been read as a poetic and aesthetic manifesto, is, in addition, a political manifesto. As the generally negative reviews of Arnold's work that appeared between 1849 and 1853 make clear, Arnold's literary and aesthetic values, his "taste," opposed that of most middle-class readers of poetry and fiction. As has been frequently discussed, most of those reviews damn Arnold's work with faint praise; the poetry, although (as Clough himself characterized it) that of "a scholar and a gentleman,"1 is described as out of tune with the modern world, self-absorbed, uselessly erudite. About the 1849 volume, Charles Kingsley asked, "To what purpose http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Victorian Poetry West Virginia University Press

Victorian Culture Wars: Alexander Smith, Arthur Hugh Clough, and Matthew Arnold in 1853

Victorian Poetry, Volume 42 (4) – Aug 2, 2004

Loading next page...
 
/lp/west-virginia-university-press/victorian-culture-wars-alexander-smith-arthur-hugh-clough-and-matthew-0XOVl0fB3k
Publisher
West Virginia University Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2004 West Virginia University.
ISSN
1530-7190
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

ANTONY H. HARRISON MATTHEW A RNOLD WAS PUBLISHING HIS FIRST TWO VOLUMES of poetry (anonymously, in 1849 and 1852), he appears to have been fighting what we might well perceive, early in the twenty-first century, as a culture war. Arnold's famous "Preface" to his 1853 Poems suggests that the most powerful enemies of the poetic principles he formulates there, and (as I hope to demonstrate) of his foundational philosophical, moral, and spiritual values, are the phenomenally popular Spasmodic poets, or, as Arnold terms them in his "Preface," "the school of Keats." In fact, Arnold's "Preface," which has traditionally been read as a poetic and aesthetic manifesto, is, in addition, a political manifesto. As the generally negative reviews of Arnold's work that appeared between 1849 and 1853 make clear, Arnold's literary and aesthetic values, his "taste," opposed that of most middle-class readers of poetry and fiction. As has been frequently discussed, most of those reviews damn Arnold's work with faint praise; the poetry, although (as Clough himself characterized it) that of "a scholar and a gentleman,"1 is described as out of tune with the modern world, self-absorbed, uselessly erudite. About the 1849 volume, Charles Kingsley asked, "To what purpose

Journal

Victorian PoetryWest Virginia University Press

Published: Aug 2, 2004

There are no references for this article.

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create folders to
organize your research

Export folders, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off