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|Title:||John Donne: The Mitcham Years, 1606-1611|
|Authors:||Taylor, Reynolds Jennifer|
|Keywords:||English Language and Literature;English Language and Literature|
|Abstract:||<p>This thesis represents an attempt to define the nature of the intense personal crisis Donne suffered in the Mitcham years, 1606-1611. Interpreted as a modified spiritual autobiography, the poetry written in these years reflects the crisis itself and the ensuing search for resolution of personal conflicts.</p> <p>The years 1607-1609 were a period of transition: the earliest divine poems reflect an attempted self-accommodation to formal religious devotion, while the late love lyrics reveal the disillusion accompanying the failure of sustained human relation in love of woman. Significant in this period is Donne's intense personal relationship with Lucy, Countess of Bedford. The collapse of this relationship in 1609 contributed to a crisis compounded of poverty, illness, and profound dejection of spirit. Donne's sense of inner incompletion, the need for the security and assurance of a sustaining personal relation, is poignantly expressed in the late lyrics and in the 'Holy Sonnets': love of woman and love of God appear as opposite foci in the search for a sufficient personal object of devotion.</p> <p>In the 'Holy Sonnets' renewed consciousness of repressed guilt and fear reinforces the urgency of this search. The resolution was both personal and religious: Donne would always live in fear, but henceforth fear tempered by recognition of an acceptance by a loving father in God. The self-renewal achieved with the resolution of the 1609 crisis represents an impressive human accomplishment. The 'Holy Sonnets' themselves illustrate the reparative function of poetry in achieving a fundamental redirection and reogranization of the self.</p>|
|Appears in Collections:||Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
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