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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

The Persistence of Beauty Public Lecture Series - The Difficulty of Beauty: Hopkins, Yeats, Crane, Spender

13th March 2012, 18:15 to 19:15, Room 140, Elvet Riverside Building, New Elvet, Professor Michael O'Neill (Durham University)

This is part of The Persistence of Beauty Public Lecture Series.

This lecture series is organised by the Romantic Dialogues and Legacies research group in Durham's Department of English Studies, and supported by the University's Institute of Advanced Study.

This lecture will explore the various ways in which four poets make poems out of their struggle with and aspirations after ‘beauty'. Hopkins suggests that ‘mortal beauty' is both perishable and ‘dangerous' (‘To What Serves Mortal Beauty?'); Yeats creates a ‘beauty born out of its own despair' (‘Among School Children'); for Crane it seems that there is no ‘beauty blessed' that is not also a ‘beauty cursed' (‘The Bathers'); Spender's poetry sets the aesthetic in tension with the political. The lecture will discuss a reluctance to settle for ‘beauty' in all four poets, a reluctance central to the difficult beauty that they achieve.

All welcome to attend.

Contact for more information about this event.