amphitheatrum sapientiae aeternae

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

An interesting link to Landscapes in the British Leeward Islands, 1713-1838

We Were Modern: ‘Material Improvements’: the Archaeology of Estate Landscapes in the British Leeward Islands, 1713-1838
On the subject of the Wordsworth poem The Solitary Reaper, a critical commentary about John Prynne's publication "The Solitary Reaper and Others" published 2007. From my own point of view I've had an increasingly difficult experience with romantic poetry,  contemporaniously I treat it all with the suspicion of an agnostic fatalist for the ill it inflicted on my fluffy-down peachskin youth, I admire the standpoint tremendously and this extends into romantic painting as well, particularly the German Romantics.
What is of interest in this commentary is the prospect of Wordworth's intended or supposed political awareness about the Highland Clearances. The writer ponders on this matter since the poem was written 1803 when Gaelic communities were fairly openly, one supposes, being obliterated from the Highlands.

He muses that Wordsworth would not have been ignorant of this fact, Dorothy's journals refer to the effects of the clearances. To be realistic for Wordsworth to have realigned his approach in a polemic or to have imbued his works with a didactic socialist vision would mean that The Solitary Reaper as we see the poem today, would simply have failed to be widely published. The poem discusses the song being sung by the solitary reaper as difficult to discern, not able to hear. But as I have alluded, maybe Wordsworth embeds this poem with polemic by asking the invisable question "Does the Solitary Reaper sing a Gaelic Song in Gaelic Scots?" One who does not understand the question is one who may refuse to answer.
The overgrown Kelp Pit