The Awkward Commerce between Literary Taste and Scientific Knowledge: John Clare’s Pre-Asylum Nature Writings
|Keywords:||約翰•克萊爾;自然書寫;品味;尷尬;自然歷史;侵越;知識民主化;John Clare;nature writing;taste;awkwardness;natural history;trespass;democratization||Issue Date:||2016||Abstract:||
John Clare’s pre-asylum nature writing (1804-1837) problematizes critical inquiry on two fronts: literary taste and scientific knowledge concerning nature. Most scholars follow the trajectory of ecocriticism, but unfortunately they often treat literary texts a-historically. To redress such an oversight, this thesis sees both John Clare’s intervention into literary canon and knowledge formation as two aesthetic choices driven by similar causes. The present thesis contends that Clare challenges decorum existent in the Romantic era through a “rhetorical strategy of awkwardness,” in which the polite / rude binary within the neoclassical tradition is deliberately destabilized in writings about natural vulgarity. On the one hand, Clare’s concern for the rude in terms of theme and style can be viewed as a trespassing act, which embarrasses the general reading public. On the other, Clare’s application of natural history to literature carries out another major trespass. Crossing the boundary between social identities and the disciplinary / methodological divide, this poet-naturalist’s nature writing opens up possibilities for the democratization of taste and knowledge.
|Appears in Collections:||外國語文學系|
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