© 2005

Tennyson’s Scepticism

  • Authors

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Aidan Day
    Pages 1-5
  3. Aidan Day
    Pages 6-23
  4. Aidan Day
    Pages 47-70
  5. Aidan Day
    Pages 139-185
  6. Aidan Day
    Pages 186-203
  7. Aidan Day
    Pages 204-205
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 206-225

About this book


Tennyson is not known for his scepticism. This book argues that he should be. It proposes a revaluation of the way in which his work is read. Tennyson has always been understood as a poet who is committed primarily to endorsing spiritual values. But this study argues that much of his poetry is driven by a metaphysical scepticism that is associated, in part, with rational perspectives deriving from Enlightenment thought. The scepticism in Tennyson's poetry partakes in the complex generation of the modern that was taking place in his era. One of the purposes of the study is to demonstrate that a cultural studies approach to Tennyson trivialises his intellectual subtlety and complexity. Making extensive critical use of Tennyson's manuscript drafts, this study provides close readings of Tennyson's earlier, shorter poems, together with the principal works of his maturity including In Memoriam , Maud and The Lover's Tale , and will be a valuable resource for Tennyson students and scholars worldwide.


poem poet poetry Tennyson

About the authors

AIDAN DAY is Professor of British Literature at the University of Aarhus, Denmark. He was formerly Professor of Nineteenth Century and Contemporary Literature at the University of Edinburgh. He is joint editor of an annotated facsimile edition of Tennyson's complete poetical manuscripts, The Tennyson Archive (31 vols, 1987-93).

Bibliographic information


'This is a stimulating and necessary book.' - Valerie Purton, The Tennyson Society