Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Strange LikenessThe Use of Old English in Twentieth-Century Poetry$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Chris Jones

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780199278329

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199278329.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 13 November 2019

Anglo-Saxon Anxieties: Auden and ‘the Barbaric Poetry of the North’

Anglo-Saxon Anxieties: Auden and ‘the Barbaric Poetry of the North’

Chapter:
(p.68) Chapter 2 Anglo-Saxon Anxieties: Auden and ‘the Barbaric Poetry of the North’
Source:
Strange Likeness
Author(s):

CHRIS JONES

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199278329.003.0003

This chapter presents an account of Auden's experiences of Old English at Oxford, then demonstrates that his early style owes many of its distinctive features to Old English poetry, and that allusions to Old English are more common than has been previously realized. Auden associates Old English with various kinds of anxiety, and in its poetry he finds analogues for the violence of his own century. He redeploys the idiom of Old English when writing of conflict, whether imaginary as in ‘Paid on Both Sides’, or historical as in The Age of Anxiety. Auden also associates Old English with sexual anxiety; an informed reading of ‘The Wanderer’ as a coming-out narrative is contingent on understanding several Old English allusions. Finally, it is argued that Auden's move from an intimate poetic voice to a more public form of address in The Orators, is achieved partly through his development of an Anglo-Saxonist rhetoric.

Keywords:   Old English, Oxford University, Auden, style, allusion, anxiety, The Wanderer, Paid on Both Sides, The Age of Anxiety, The Orators

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .