By John Holmes
It is a entire research of Darwin's Legacy for faith, ecology and the humanities. In Darwin's Bards John Holmes argues that poetry could have a profound impression on how we expect and consider in regards to the human in a Darwinian global. together with over 50 entire poems and colossal extracts from numerous extra, Holmes exhibits how poets from Tennyson and Browning, via Hardy and Frost, to Ted Hughes, Pattiann Rogers and Edwin Morgan have replied to the invention of evolution. Written for scientists, philosophers and ecologists, in addition to poets, critics and scholars of literature, Darwin's Bards is a well timed intervention into the heated debates over Darwin's legacy for faith, ecology and the humanities. The booklet will attract readers for its dialogue of the existential implications of Darwinism, for its shut readings of poetry, and for the reprinted poems themselves.
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Extra resources for Darwin's Bards: British and American Poetry in the Age of Evolution
Her originality lies in fusing a typical myth of evolutionary progress with imagery of the Fall, crucially the apple. At each stage of evolution, Robinson suggests, there is a loss of innocence as well as an advance. Progress requires a cycle of dissatisfaction as a stimulus. This cyclical pattern is repeated in the poem itself, as the rhymes of the first stanza reappear in the last, with a slight evolutionary change from ‘gold’ to ‘goal’ and ‘soul’. A similar evolutionary metamorphosis takes place in the middle of the poem, as the ‘vague unconscious long unrest’ (due to recur as ‘the same unrest’ in the last stanza) manifests itself as ‘The old, unchanged, remote distress’.
Subjected to the same interrogation, ID is exposed as a will-o’the-wisp. But even if it were not – even if ID proves able to mount a more robust scientific challenge to Darwinism than it has so far – it would be irresponsible and dishonest for anyone with a genuine commitment to the truth to ignore the vast weight of scientific opinion against it. Creationism, relativism and Intelligent Design notwithstanding, Darwinian evolutionary theory remains the core of modern biology. As such, it has more profound implications for ourselves as living beings than any other science.
This engagement is often realised in intertextual dialogues that cross the different generations of Darwinian poets. As Pack, Rogers and Clampitt respond to Frost who himself reworks ideas from Hardy, while Millay rewrites Meredith’s Modern Love from her own vantage point, Hughes makes Jeffers’s core imagery his own, and all of these poets write back to Darwin himself, the Darwinian tradition emerges as a substantial and shaping presence within modern poetry. Poetry and Darwinism in practice: Three poems by Edwin Morgan I have suggested that poetry can affect how we think and feel about Darwinism.
Darwin's Bards: British and American Poetry in the Age of Evolution by John Holmes