© 2019

The Poetry of Clare, Hopkins, Thomas, and Gurney

Lyric Individualism


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. Andrew Hodgson
    Pages 1-13
  3. John Clare: Striving to Be Himself

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 43-49
    2. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 81-110
  4. Gerard Manley Hopkins: Oddity and Obscurity

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 111-117
    2. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 119-142
    3. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 143-168
  5. Edward Thomas: A Personal Accent

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 169-176
    2. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 177-205
    3. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 207-236
  6. Ivor Gurney: Unquiet Achings

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 237-242
    2. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 243-268
    3. Andrew Hodgson
      Pages 269-295
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 297-337

About this book


Andrew Hodgson displays a fine attentiveness to the distinctive lyric voices of Clare, Hopkins, Edward Thomas, and Gurney, tracing the peculiar contours of their intensity, intimacy, and intricacy with a remarkable sensitivity, skill, and assurance. The subtle incisiveness of his close engagement with these poets is a continual delight.

– Jason Harding, Professor of English Literature, University of Durham, UK

 Andrew Hodgson’s beautifully-written study of Clare, Hopkins, Edward Thomas, and Gurney traces in the textures of their verse idiosyncrasies which announce the poet’s selfhood, while also trying for a rapprochement with the common tongue.

– Vidyan Ravinthiran, Associate Professor of English Literature, Harvard University, USA

 This book attends to four poets – John Clare, Gerard Manley Hopkins, Edward Thomas, and Ivor Gurney – whose poems are remarkable for their personal directness and distinctiveness. It shows how their writing conveys a potently individual quality of feeling, perception, and experience: each poet responds with unusual commitment to the Romantic idea of art as personal expression. The book looks closely at the vitality and intricacy of the poets’ language, the personal candour of their subject matter, and their sense, obdurate but persuasive, of their own strangeness. As it traces the tact and imagination with which each of the four writers realises the possibilities of individualism in lyric, it affirms the vibrancy of their contributions to nineteenth and twentieth-century poetry.

Andrew Hodgson is Lecturer in Romanticism at the Department of English Literature, University of Birmingham, UK.


lyric Poetry John Clare Ivor Gurney Gerard Manley Hopkins Edward Thomas Post-romantic Poetry Nineteenth Century lyric

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of English LiteratureUniversity of BirminghamBirminghamUK

About the authors

Andrew Hodgson is Lecturer in Romanticism at the Department of English Literature, University of Birmingham, UK.

Bibliographic information