Wednesday, March 22, 2023
HomeEnglish LiteratureName for Papers for 'Ted Hughes’ Expressionism: Visionary Subjectivity'

Name for Papers for ‘Ted Hughes’ Expressionism: Visionary Subjectivity’

We’re delighted to announce that the British Library will host a symposium on Ted Hughes and Expressionism in collaboration with Dr Steve Ely, Director of the Ted Hughes Community on the College of Huddersfield.

Black and white photograph of Ted Hughes, with a close up on his face. Taken by Fay Godwin

Ted Hughes by Fay Godwin © British Library Board

This symposium is designed to discover and examine the declare that Hughes’s most attribute, distinctive, and progressive work—whereby lies the load of his declare to be considered a serious poet and an internationally important artist—is basically Expressionist, characterised by a rejection of objectivity in illustration in favour of a Visionary Subjectivity that pulls on internal life and creativeness to rework and warp content material, deploying abstraction, typologies and symbols to form shows in an primarily didactic method.

Hughes’s Expressionist mode manifests all through his oeuvre and contains lots of his most celebrated poems and books, together with ‘Wind’, ‘Mayday on Holderness’, ‘Thrushes’, ‘Pike’, Wodwo, Crow, Cave Birds, Gaudete, Stays of Elmet and Capriccio.  A lot of his performs and brief tales—’Difficulties of a Bridegroom’, ‘The Wound’, ‘The Head’—are equally Expressionist, having specific affinities with German Expressionism. In fact, not all Hughes’s work is Expressionist by any means, and throughout his profession he produced celebrated poetry that appears to characterize a extra goal—Naturalist, Realist—response to expertise, in works together with Season Songs, Moortown Diaries, River and Birthday Letters, for instance. 

Specializing in Hughes’s artwork, methodology and method on this manner invitations approaches to his work that transcend the Anglophone literary-historical custom and talk about his work within the context of European and worldwide artists and actions within the arts—visible, dramatic and musical in addition to literary— affinity, affect and collaboration: one thinks instantly of Hughes’s work with, and advocacy of, progressive, experimental and avant-garde artists within the Expressionist custom, together with the Jap European poets Herbert, Holub, Pilinsky and Popa; the American artist Leonard Baskin; the dramatist, director and impresario Peter Brook and the photographer Fay Godwin.

The British Library is a serious centre for Hughes examine with substantial collections referring to the poet that embrace archival, printed and audio-visual materials. Researchers can be taught extra about all points of Hughes’ work by exploring his massive private archive (Add MS 88918), which was acquired in 2008 and numerous smaller associated collections together with Hughes’ correspondence with Olwyn Hughes, Leonard Baskin and Keith Sagar. Please see the Library’s assortment information on Hughes for extra details about its Hughes holdings.

A selection of notebooks, typed and handwritten pages of paper displayed in a fan shape on a black background. Items are from the Ted Hughes archive.

Materials from the Ted Hughes Archive

Topics for papers may embrace, however are certainly not restricted to, the next.  Proposals ought to make the hyperlink to the themes of the symposium clear.

  • Works by Hughes: particular poems, sequences or collections; radio performs; brief tales; important prose or pedagogical works
  • Hughes’s poetics: artifice, methodology, type, method
  • Hughes and ‘visionary precursors’ (together with, however not restricted to, Christopher Sensible, William Blake, Emily Dickinson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, D.H. Lawrence, W.B. Yeats)
  • Hughes, T.S. Eliot and Modernism
  • Hughes, Dylan Thomas & the poets of the New Apocalypse
  • Hughes’s relationship with fashionable and up to date experimental and avant-garde English language poetry
  • Hughes, European and Worldwide poetry & poets
  • Hughes and visible artists (together with, however not restricted to, related collaborations, for instance, with Leonard Baskin and Fay Godwin)
  • Hughes and Drama
  • Hughes’s work with Peter Brook
  • Hughes and German Expressionism
  • Hughes and Music

Please ship proposals of as much as 250 phrases for 20-minute papers, plus a brief biographical notice, to Steve Ely at [email protected] by Friday, 12th Could, 2023. There might be no cost for registration.

For extra details about the Ted Hughes Community, see:



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular

Recent Comments