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Harris: British Romantics- Lake District Poets/ Tolkein: Home


Lake District Poets & J.R.R. Tolkien Paper 2018


Main Topic:  


Write a comparative analysis paper in which you demonstrate scholarship and insight as you explain the Nature symbolism of Romanticism.  


For Focus & Organization:


In your first two body paragraphs, discuss how Wordsworth’s pantheistic Nature symbolism of revolutionary idealism in “Tintern Abbey” and The Prelude is comparable to Tolkien’s symbolic vision of Lonely Mountain as a gothic cathedral and a poetic individual in The Hobbit.  As your third paragraph, explore the same symbolic vision in Turner’s Interior of Tintern Abbey artwork and Tolkien’s Xanadu artwork.  Lastly, discuss the relevance of the abolitionist visionary Coleridge, what poem and Nature symbolism of his would have inspired that artwork by Tolkien, and why Wordsworth chooses to address Coleridge in The Prelude and collaborate with him on The Lyrical Ballads.  


For Scholarly Research:


Enhance your paper with literary criticism by engaging with relevant biographical or footnote detail from Stephen Greenblatt’s The Norton Anthology of English Literature: The Romantic Period, critical insight from Natural Supernaturalism: Tradition and Revolution in Romantic Literature (click preview for pages 74-122 on The Prelude and pages 183-6 and 255-56 on the circuitous journey pattern) by M. H. Abrams, and/or a critical essay from our Library’s collection of resources such as Modern Critical Views edited by Harold Bloom.


Stephen Greenblatt is Cogan University Professor of the Humanities at Harvard University. He is the author of thirteen books, including The Rise and Fall of Adam and Eve; The Swerve: How the World Became Modern; Shakespeare's Freedom; Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare; Hamlet in Purgatory; Marvelous Possessions; and Renaissance Self-Fashioning. He is General Editor of The Norton Anthology of English Literature and of The Norton Shakespeare, has edited seven collections of criticism, and is a founding editor of the journal Representations. His honors include the 2016 Holberg Prize from the Norwegian Parliament, the 2012 Pulitzer Prize and the 2011 National Book Award for The Swerve, MLA’s James Russell Lowell Prize (twice), Harvard University’s Cabot Fellowship, the Distinguished Humanist Award from the Mellon Foundation, Yale’s Wilbur Cross Medal, the William Shakespeare Award for Classical Theatre, the Erasmus Institute Prize, two Guggenheim Fellowships and the Distinguished Teaching Award from the University of California, Berkeley. Among his named lecture series are the Adorno Lectures in Frankfurt, the University Lectures at Princeton, and the Clarendon Lectures at Oxford, and he has held visiting professorships at universities in Beijing, Kyoto, London, Paris, Florence, Torino, Trieste, and Bologna, as well as the Renaissance residency at the American Academy in Rome. He was president of the Modern Language Association of America and a long-term fellow of the Institute for Advanced Study in Berlin. He has been elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the American Philosophical Society, and the Italian literary academy Accademia degli Arcadi.


M. H. Abrams (1912—2015) was Class of 1916 Professor of English, Emeritus at Cornell University. He received the Phi Beta Kappa Christian Gauss Prize for The Mirror and the Lamp and the MLA's James Russell Lowell Prize for Natural Supernaturalism. He is also the author of The Milk of Paradise, A Glossary of Literary Terms, The Correspondent Breeze, and Doing Things with Texts. He is the recipient of Guggenheim, Ford Foundation, and Rockefeller Postwar fellowships, the Award in Humanistic Studies from the Academy of Arts and Sciences (1984), the Distinguished Scholar Award by the Keats-Shelley Society (1987), and the Award for Literature by the American Academy of Arts and Letters (1990). In 1999 The Mirror and the Lamp was ranked twenty-fifth among the Modern Library's "100 best nonfiction books written in English during the twentieth century."


Harold Bloom is Sterling Professor of the Humanities at Yale University. Educated at Cornell and Yale universities, the books he has written include Shelley's Mythmaking (1959), The Visionary Company (1961), Blake's Apocalypse (1963), Yeats (1970), A Map of Misreading (1975), Kabbalah and Criticism (1975), Agon: Toward a Theory of Revisionism (1982), The American Religion (1992), The Western Canon (1994), Omens of Millennium: The Gnosis of Angels, Dreams, and Resurrection (1996), and Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human (1998), a 1998 National Book Award finalist. The Anxiety of Influence (1973) sets forth Professor Bloom's provocative theory of the literary relationships between the great writers and their predecessors. His most recent books include How to Read and Why (2000), Genius: A Mosaic of One Hundred Exemplary Creative Minds (2002), Hamlet: Poem Unlimited (2003), Where Shall Wisdom Be Found? (2004), Jesus and Yahweh: The Names Divine (2005), The Anatomy of Influence (2011), and The Daemon Knows: Literary Greatness and the American Sublime (2015). In addition, he is the author of hundreds of articles, reviews, and editorial introductions. In 1999, Professor Bloom received the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal for Criticism. He has also received the International Prize of Catalonia, the Alfonso Reyes Prize of Mexico, and the Hans Christian Andersen Bicentennial Prize of Denmark.


Deadlines:  Drafting Check & Workshop on Thursday, October 4

      Final Draft & due Friday, October 12


Standard Paper Checklist:    

Follow MLA guidelines and punctuation rules set forth in OWL link on MyLatin                                                                     

Proper format, heading, double-spaced type in 12-point font             

Around five pages, with the last page as Works Cited for all included sources      

Short and creative title indicating primary author by name

Introduction with hook, context, bridge, and thesis about style and theme                                                                                 

Clear, consistent analytical focus on how style conveys theme Use relevant style device* terms and cultural concept* terms

**(In addition to appropriate style device terminology such as kunstlerroman, be sure to use appropriate concept terminology for the idealism the works represent.  To fully explore the pantheistic sense of revolutionary idealism of the works and the concepts associated with such values, briefly consider how the works represent Rousseau’s and Kant’s philosophical concepts and challenge the philosophical concepts and conventional legacy of Calvin and Locke.  See class notes for such concept terminology.)                                                                                                        

Logical organization, transitions, coherence of your ideas                                                                                                                 

Topic sentences clearly echo your thesis points         

Substantive paragraphs with appropriate evidence for all claims Specific examples provided in a consistent and balanced manner                                                                                                 

Partial quotes and paraphrases properly documented with parenthetical citations

Cite lines and use backslash for line breaks with poetry/song, and cite pages for prose

Avoid use of “I”- “We”- “You”  except in a memoir or creative section you may use

Concluding paragraph reviews key points, widens context, ends with a clincher

No spelling, grammar, or usage errors                                                                                                              completed


Questions? Ask Ms. Stuart