Papers on Language & Literature

Literary history, theory, and interpretation.

Articles from Vol. 28, No. 4, Fall

Alvin D. Sullivan, 1942-1991
I rise with divided heart to speak in honor of Alvin Sullivan, my friend and colleague of almost 25 years. The American poet, Hyam Plutzik, writing a Requiem for a friend, concluded, as I do, that "Nothing can be done but something can be said at least."...
Ashbery's "Self-Portrait." (John Ashbery)
Barbara Johnson may well have had in mind Ashbery's "Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror" in speaking of the deconstructivist willingness to focus on what she calls the "warring forces of signification within the text itself" (qtd. in Lynn 106). Nothing...
A Taste of Fruit: The Extended Hand in William Carlos Williams and Imaginative Distance in Wallace Stevens
While Wallace Stevens employs an array of metaphors to describe and discover in an imaginative sense the specific objects of reality, William Carlos Williams is concerned with actual human touching and tasting of those objects. In their consideration...
History When Time Stops: Blake's 'America,' 'Europe,' and 'The Song of Los.' (William Blake)
The renewed interest in the contemporary historical contexts of English Romantic literary and visual works of art that has followed the growth of New Historicism is perhaps nowhere more important than it is in relation to William Blake. That this is...
"How Are the Mighty Fallen!": Saul as Tragic Figure
I wish to make a case for Saul, Israel's first king, as a tragic figure in something of the Greek sense Aristotle set forth in his Poetics: a person of considerable standing who, through some error or frailty, makes a mistake in judgment that starts...
Popean Echoes in 'Pamela': The Lady Davers Scene
In a key scene of Samuel Richardson's Pamela (1740), the newly married heroine is confronted by her husband's implacable sister, come to determine whether Pamela is yet "whored." Lady Davers embodies and gives vehement voice to all the objections her...
Style and Structure in the Early Novels of Evelyn Waugh
The early novels of Evelyn Waugh are characterized by a severe economy of style and structure, an abbreviated form of literary expression that has been given the name "minimalism."(1) The purpose of this paper is to outline the dominant features of...
The Significance of Constantinople in 'Orlando.' (Virginia Woolf's Novel)
Virginia Woolf situated the most momentous event in Orlando, the celebrated sex change, in Constantinople. Although the choice of location was certainly not arbitrary, Woolf's reasons for this decision have never been explored. For Woolf, Constantinople...
The Square City-Palace in the State of Lilliput
Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels, published in 1726, has long been accepted as an allegory of eighteenth-century life, and of post Renaissance ideals in general.(1) However, despite the spate of source studies on the Travels in recent years (Vienken...