Unique Yeats, Unique Ireland/YEATS UNIQUE, IRLANDE UNIQUE

By Rui, Dong | Canadian Social Science, March 1, 2007 | Go to article overview

Unique Yeats, Unique Ireland/YEATS UNIQUE, IRLANDE UNIQUE


Rui, Dong, Canadian Social Science


Abstract:

W.B. Yeats is considered as one of the most outstanding poets in the world because of his excellent talent and patriotism. However, many people neglect the influence of Irish cultural background on him. This paper is aimed at discussing the uniqueness of Ireland as well as its significant influence on Yeats from the perspectives of history, culture, music and nationalism.

Key words: W.B.Yeats, Ireland, nationalism

Résumé: W.B. Yeats est considéré comme l'un des poètes les plus célèbres du monde grâce à son talent et son patriotisme. Néanmoins, beaucoup négligent l'influence de la culture irlandaise sur lui. L'article présent vise à étudier l'originalité de l'Irlande et son influence significative exercée sur Yeats dans les perspectives de l'histoire, de la culture, de la musique et du nationalisme.

Mots-Clés: W.B. Yeats, Irlande, nationalisme

Ireland is a unique country with a rich history, magnificent cultures and breathtaking landscapes. Of all its splendors, literature, especially poetry plays a very important role. A great many outstanding poets came from this land, including James Joyce, Seamus Heaney and W.B.Yeats. All of them possess the uniqueness of Irish features, especially Yeats, the greatest lyric poet Ireland has ever produced.

William Butler Yeats was Ireland's leading poet, chief architect of the Irish Literary Revival, and, according to T.S. Eliot, "one of those few whose history is the history of their own time, who are part of the consciousness of an age which cannot be understood without them."2 Yeats was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1923 for what the Nobel Committee described as "his always inspired poetry which in a highly artistic form gives expression to the spirit of a whole nation". His success is due to not only his talents and efforts, but also to the inspirations he got from his beloved Ireland.

Yeats' work is special because it contains an Irish nationalism. Much of his writing stems from his love for his nation, and many of his works have been served as a prototype to other aspiring patriots. Consequently, Yeats' work has influenced the future of Ireland. When Ireland achieved her independence, she faced a problem of her own identity. Time called for a reevaluation of Irish heritage. At that turning point, Yeats became Ireland's spokesman. Although Yeats' family moved to London when he was two and he lived there until he was sixteen, his mother's Irish songs and stories kept him connected to Ireland. Yeats' first collection of poetry being published in 1889 has already showed his concern which was to remain central to his writing- Ireland. In one of his letters, he mentioned that his work has been done in every detail with a deliberate Irish aim. His early works are mainly budding nationalistic, trying to unite the cultural and political aspects of the emerging movement. Later, increased involvement with nationalist politics made his diction plainer, his syntax tighter, while the traditional form was maintained. During the Irish Literature Revival, Yeats played a key role. As a cultural nationalist, Yeats knew what he wanted to achieve must be reconstructed from the bottom up, so he preferred to decentralize cultural societies to inspire everyone in the community by drawing their attention to their common heritage. Easter 1916 might be the culminating work in Yeats' establishment of Irish identity. In this poem, he expresses a fear of the future and a disapproval of crazed ideologues.

All changed, changed utterly:

A terrible beauty is born.3

These lines imply the turn of Yeats and Ireland at the time. Yeats asserts that Ireland and its people have been "changed utterly". He memorializes the people who sacrificed their lives in the Easter Rebellion as a tribute to transform themselves and the history of Ireland. By using "terrible" to describe "beauty" Yeats expresses his mixed feeling of admiration and disgust about the independence of Ireland. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Unique Yeats, Unique Ireland/YEATS UNIQUE, IRLANDE UNIQUE
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.