By Dr Houghton-Walker Sarah
Addressing a missed element of John Clare's background, Sarah Houghton-Walker explores Clare's poetry in the framework of his religion and the spiritual context within which he lived. whereas Clare expressed affection for the tested Church and different denominations on a variety of events, Houghton-Walker brings jointly an unlimited array of proof to teach that any exploration of Clare's spiritual religion needs to transcend pulpit and chapel. Phenomena that Clare himself defines as parts of religion comprise ghosts, witches, and literature, in addition to options similar to selfhood, Eden, eternity, adolescence, and evil. including extra conventional non secular expressions, those it seems that disparate beneficial properties of Clare's spirituality are printed to be of primary importance to his poetry, and it turns into glaring that Clare's reports can let us know a lot concerning the adventure of 'religion', 'faith', and 'belief' within the interval extra generally.A distinguishing attribute of Houghton-Walker's procedure is her conviction that one needs to take note of all facets of Clare's religion in any other case threat misrepresenting it. Her e-book therefore engages not just with the evidence of Clare's non secular conduct but in addition with the ways that he used to be actually encouraged, and with how that suggestion is attached to his intimations of divinity, to his imaginative and prescient of nature, and therefore to his poetry. trust, mediated throughout the inspiration of imaginative and prescient, is located to be implicated in Clare's studies and interpretations of the flora and fauna and is hence proven to be serious to the content material of his verse.
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Extra resources for John Clare's Religion (The Nineteenth Century Series)
292 and 299. John Milton, ‘Character of the Long Parliament’, in Complete Prose Works of John Milton, ed. Don. M. Wolfe and others, 8 vols (New Haven, 1953–82), V, ed. French Fogle, p. 450. 36 24 John Clare’s Religion all, Clare understands that the self-interested egotism of religion’s priests and their essentially political, self-aggrandising arguments are precisely what conspire to render religion ‘political’ and thus to destroy it. 1456–1473) Tithes were one religious issue that became explicitly political.
Clare entered into debates, but his antipathy towards party politics, its self-interest and spin, allowed a very individual perspective. ’ She goes on: He was frightened by any form of political activity which seemed to feed, and feed upon, the extreme polarizing drift of English political life. He believed that reform was needed, and well understood that there were extremists on both sides. 27 As these conclusions suggests, moderation is key. Methodism and Enthusiasm A sketch of the relationship between ‘Methodism’ and society will allow us to see more clearly the relevance of ‘those people called Methodists’ to the life and faith of an agricultural labourer-poet.
1661). 1692). 1726–53) explicitly and nostalgically deals with notions of religion in nature, with enclosure, and with retrospection. The poem thus suggests that the destruction of nature and community as Clare knows them to be, or at least as they are in his ideal, is directly linked to the decline of the ‘true’ or ‘plain’ faith he laments, firmly identifying connections between politics and religion. Politics and Religion A large part of Clare’s disenchantment with organised religion can broadly be ascribed to what he perceives as its political aspects.