The Triumph of Augustan Poetics: English Literary Culture from Butler to Johnson
The Triumph of Augustan Poetics offers an important re-evaluation of the transition from Baroque to Augustan in English literature. Starting with Butler's Hudibras, Blanford Parker describes Augustan satire as a movement away from the 'controversial disputation' of the seventeenth century to a general satire which ridicules Protestant, Anglican and Catholic in equal measure, as well as the poetic traditions that supported them. Once the dominant forms of late medieval and Baroque thought - analogical and fideist, a fully symbolic world and an empty wilderness - were erased, a novel space for the imagination was created. Here a 'literalism' new to European thought can be seen to have replaced the general satire, and at this moment Pope and Thomson create a new art of natural and quotidian description, in parallel with the rise of the novel. Parker's account concludes with the ambiguous or hostile reaction to this new mode seen in the works of Samuel Johnson and others.
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Alexander Pope allegory analogy Anglican Augustan culture Augustan literature Augustan poetry Augustan writing Baroque Belinda Benlowes biblical Butler Cambridge canto Catholic Christian Christian poetry church Clarendon Press classical conceit contemporaries Cowley creature critics described divine doctrine Donne Dryden Dunciad earlier eighteenth century elements Eliot empirical empiricism England English enthusiasm Essay faith fancy fideist figures Georgic Hobbes Hudibras Hudibrastic human Humanist Hume Iliad imagination important intellectual John Johnson kind landscape language literal literary literature Locke Lockeian logist London medieval meditation metaphor metaphysical metaphysical poetry metonymy Milton mind mode modern moral mystical narrative nature Neoplatonic Night Thoughts objects Oxford passage pastoral period poem poet poetic Pope Pope's Prior prose Protestant Rape realism reason religion religious Renaissance rhetoric Rochester Samuel Butler Samuel Johnson satire Scholastic sense seventeenth century Solomon spiritual Summer superstition Swift sylphs theology things Thomson tradition University Press Vanity verse Virgil Young