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Title: Seamus Heaney’s Sonnet in the ‘new age of anxiety’
Authors: Sant Balzan, Janice
Keywords: Heaney, Seamus, 1939-2013 -- Criticism and interpretation
Heaney, Seamus, 1939-2013. District and Circle
Heaney, Seamus, 1939-2013 -- Technique
Anxiety in literature
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: University of Malta. Junior College
Citation: Sant Balzan, J. (2021). Seamus Heaney’s Sonnet in the ‘new age of anxiety’. Symposia Melitensia, 17, 95-106.
Abstract: Around one-third of the sonnets Seamus Heaney published over his entire poetic career are found in the collection District and Circle (2006). Heaney maintained that this collection was distinct from his previous ones because it described a world that, in his view, was characterised by ‘a new age of anxiety’. Such anxiety manifests itself repeatedly in poems that tend toward fragmentation and incompletion. And thus the question that immediately suggests itself relates to the adequacy of the sonnet form to tackle such a subject. For the sonnet as a form tends towards resolution and its architectural structure is inclined towards completion. By referring closely to a sonnet sequence from his 2006 collection, this article seeks to assess the ways in which Heaney makes of the sonnet form an apposite vehicle to reflect on the anxiety-ridden world of the twenty-first century.
Appears in Collections:Scholarly Works - JCEng
SymMel, 2021, Volume 17
SymMel, 2021, Volume 17

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