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Arms and the Imagination: Essays on War, Politics, and Anglophone Culture

Arms and the Imagination: Essays on War, Politics, and Anglophone Culture (Paperback)

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From the time of John Milton to that of William Blake, the literature of Britain absorbed the impact of two major military developments. In the early modern era, the military revolution strove to establish permanent armies under state discipline and, in England, the resistance to this development exhibited in the controversy over standing armies. In this penetrating and highly original study, Gordon demonstrates that military debate, encouraged by Britain's semi-secure insular situation, had a remarkable impact on the British imagination and its narratives. Affected were structure and closure; character evaluation; heroic and mock-heroic styles; attitudes toward love and marriage; and the roles of locality and environment in the shaping of the national and personal character. More remarkable still, these effects signaled the emergence of a civilian consciousness that still influences our literary preference and expectations.

Essays & WritingLiterary Criticism Publisher: University Press of America Publication Date: 01/07/2009 ISBN-13: 9780761838371  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
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Robert C. Gordon was born in Melbourne, Australia and raised in the United States. After serving in World War II he earned his doctorate in English Literature at Harvard, and went on to teach at the University of Oregon and San Jose State University. He has been a Fulbright scholar, a John Hay fellow, and a reviewer and editorial consultant for a variety of publishers and journals. After the publication of Under Which King?: A Study of Sir Walter Scott's Fiction, he began to explore the relations between military and literary history in a series of papers, reviews, and articles that led to Arms and the Imagination. He now lives in Old Lyme, Connecticut.

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