Session 40: “Women’s Transatlantic Poetic Network”

Session 40 of our seminar took place on Wednesday 10 January 2016 at the Université Paris Diderot-Paris 7 (Bâtiment Olympes de Gouges, salle 346, 18h-19h30).


François Gégard, Corinne at Cape Miseno, oil on canvas, 1819.

Páraic Finnerty (University of Portsmouth) gave a paper entitled “Women’s Transatlantic Poetic Network.” His respondent will be Adeline Chevrier-Bosseau (Université Paris-Est Créteil).


Páraic Finnerty and Adeline Chevrier-Bosseau talking about Emily Dickinson

Páraic worked with extracts from the following texts:

– Chapman, Alison, ‘Poetry, Network, Nation: Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Expatriate Women’s Poetry’ in Networking the Nation: British and American Womens Poetry and Italy, 1840-1870 (Woodbridge: Boydell and Brewer, 2003), 55–77. Chapman, Poetry, Network, Nation

– Peterson, ‘Victorian Poets, Politics and Networks’, Victorian Studies, Winter, 2013, Vol. 55 Issue 2, 309–317. Peterson, Victorian Poets, Politics and Networks

– Quotes from various literary works which can be found here: Women’s Transatlantic Poetic Network, quotes

Adeline analyzed some of Emily Dickinson’s poems:

THE BRAIN within its groove
Runs evenly and true;
But let a splinter swerve,
’T were easier for you
To put the water back 5
When floods have slit the hills,
And scooped a turnpike for themselves,
And blotted out the mills!
I FELT a cleavage in my mind
As if my brain had split;
I tried to match it, seam by seam,
But could not make them fit.
The thought behind I strove to join
Unto the thought before,
But sequence ravelled out of reach
Like balls upon a floor.
SPLIT the lark and you ’ll find the music,
Bulb after bulb, in silver rolled,
Scantily dealt to the summer morning,
Saved for your ear when lutes be old.
Loose the flood, you shall find it patent,
Gush after gush, reserved for you;
Scarlet experiment! sceptic Thomas,
Now, do you doubt that your bird was true?
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