REBELS AND CONSERVATIVES by Amanda M. Ellis

REBELS AND CONSERVATIVES

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Seventeen years of research implement this recitative of Dorothy and William Wordsworth and Their Circle by a retired English professor (and novelist). It is semi-popular in style and intent, omitting literary criticisms and footnotes in favor of daily events and personal asides. This form is sometimes awkward, since the central narrative of Wordsworth and his sister often digresses into long biographies of their friends, causing some confusion in time and repetition. Most of the people involved, however, De Quincey, Hazlitt, Shelley, Keats, William Godwin, Coleridge (a particular friend) and the Lambs were highly articulate and their interlocking relationships are exemplified and quoted at length. They were fascinating people, even when viewed from a slightly domesticated stance so that the book is full of births, quarrels, housekeeping arrangements, etc. And even if the book lacks a centralizing, strong viewpoint from the author, it is filled with many amplifying details about this particular and prominent enclave in English literature.

Pub Date: Oct. 23rd, 1967
Publisher: Indiana University Press