Sustainability in the Victorianist Classroom

In 1879 Gerard Manley Hopkins returned to a very different Oxford than he remembered from his undergraduate years. The “rural keeping” that he delighted in had been replaced by the “graceless growth” of modern suburbs. Most troubling, he found that his “aspens dear” were “all felled,” leading to his heartbreaking repetition of the strokes in … More Sustainability in the Victorianist Classroom

Arthurian Time

Imagine Arthur pulling the sword from the stone. What season is it? Do you see snow? Does a crisp winter light play over the stone? Now be honest…is Arthur wearing a scarf? I apologize for channeling a Disney scene, but bear with me. The legend of Arthur is very seasonal. The sword is pulled from … More Arthurian Time

What is Medievalism?

When I say “King Arthur,” what do you picture? A very English-looking knight, confidently receiving a sword from the most reliable of kingmakers: strange women living in lakes. Or maybe he’s being followed by his trusty coconut-wielding squire as he debates the ability of load-bearing sparrows with a French knight (heavy on the k and gh). But what … More What is Medievalism?

Christmas with Hopkins

With his emphasis on the embodiment of Christ in his poetry, the priest-poet, Gerard Manley Hopkins has quite a few seasonal poems to choose from. Last year, we looked at one of his darker Christmas poems, but I thought we would be a little more festive this year. The stanza above is from “Ad Matrem Virginem,” … More Christmas with Hopkins