Victorian Poetry

Journal publishing scholary articles on topics related to Victorian poetry and poets.

Articles from Vol. 44, No. 4, Winter

An Ebbigrammar of Motives; or, BA for Short
worked and worn by passionate debates, And losing by the loss it apprehends, The flesh rocks round and every breath it sends Is ravelled to a sigh. All tortured states Suppose a straitened place. --EBB, "Finite and Infinite" (1850),...
Aurora Leigh's Radical Youth: Derridean Parergon and the Narrative Frame in "A Vision of Poets"
With the publication of Aurora Leigh in 1856, Elizabeth Barrett Browning not only offered readers a poetic work that rivaled Wordsworth's The Prelude in innovation of form and content but also identified this work as the pinnacle of her career. In...
Cobridme De Flores: (Un)covering Flowers of Portuguese and Spanish Poets in Sonnets from the Portuguese
A small bound book that Elizabeth Barrett Browning used for Part II of her diary (1832), contains unpublished notes in her hand that give us more information on what she read, translated, and studied around the time of her diary entries. (1) Like many...
"Confirm My Voice": "My Sisters," Poetic Audiences, and the Published Voices of EBB
In a pocket notebook including works dating from the 1842-44 period, the poet who used the name Elizabeth Barrett Barrett before her marriage and Elizabeth Barrett Browning afterwards, or "EBB" for short throughout her life, (1) drafted an untitled,...
Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Shakespeare: Translating the Language of Intimacy
The poet who famously bemoaned her lack of literary grandmothers was not lacking in gratefully acknowledged male forebears, particularly Shakespeare and Homer, whom she describes as the "colossal borderers of the two intellectual departments of the...
Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Coventry Patmore, and Alfred Tennyson on Napoleon III: The Hero-Poet and Carlylean Heroics
The Hero can be Poet, Prophet, King, Priest or what you will, According to the world he finds himself born into. I confess, I have no notion of a truly great man that could not be all sorts of men. The Poet who could merely sit on a chair,...
"Judge No More What Ladies Do": Elizabeth Barrett Browning's Active Medievalism, the Female Troubadour, and Joan of Arc
Elizabeth Barrett Browning's engagement with and contribution to the cultural discourse of Victorian medievalism is an area of her work which deserves far more critical attention than it has received: indeed the whole question of female-authored medievalism...
Publishing and Reading "Our EBB": Editorial Pedagogy, Contemporary Culture, and "The Runaway Slave at Pilgrim's Point"
This is Living Art": so runs the title of the Armstrong Browning Library s recent bicentennial conference on Elizabeth Barrett Browning. (1) Thirty years ago, this claim might have seemed dubious; by now, it is indisputable. The publication of multiple...
Strange Music: Engaging Imaginatively with the Family of Elizabeth Barrett Browning from a Creole and Black Woman's Perspective
My novel in progress Strange Music (Jonathan Cape, forthcoming, 2008) offers a fictional exploration of the family of Elizabeth Barrett Browning from Elizabeth's own perspective and from that of a Creole and a black woman, and juxtaposes the three...
Telling It Slant: Promethean, Whig, and Dissenting Politics in Elizabeth Barrett's Poetry of the 1830s
Since the 1970s and the start of the process of recovering Elizabeth Barrett Browning from the "servants' quarters" of the "mansion" of Literature where, in Virginia Woolf's famous description, the poet "bangs the crockery around and eats vast handfuls...
"The Least 'Angelical' Poem in the Language": Political Economy, Gender, and the Heritage of Aurora Leigh
Since its canonical recovery in the 1970s, Elizabeth Barrett Browning's "novel-poem" Aurora Leigh has been a highly contested text in feminist literary criticism. (1) Critics have focused on EBB's tenuous position as a female poet in mid-Victorian...
Two of Elizabeth Barrett Browning's Pan Poems and Their After-Life in Robert Browning's "Pan and Luna"
Elizabeth Barrett Browning's "The Dead Pan" (1844) and "A Musical Instrument" (Cornhill Magazine, 1860) draw on the figure of the goat-god Pan to deal with aesthetic issues of poetic process and product, with theological issues of belief and godhead,...