Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 19 February 2019

Abstract and Keywords

W. B. Yeats made elegy a significant element of his poetry. Between the end of the 1880s and the end of the 1930s, he effectively transformed the genre and made it a medium to reflect his vision of the afterlife. In his study of Yeats as elegist, Jahan Ramazani noted that death both ‘elicits abundant imaginings and marks the limit of the imagination’. Yeats's poem ‘In Memory of Major Robert Gregory’ achieves its lasting significance in the tradition of elegy, while the double elegy, ‘In Memory of Eva Gore-Booth and Con Markiewicz’, flirts with the ritualistic imagery of light and shade and seasonal change. Edna Longley has argued that Yeats enables a new kind of elegiac writing by powerfully combining Irish and British traditions, and by accommodating the language and style of World War I poets such as Wilfred Owen and Charles Sorley. Both Owen and Sorley wrote intensely about violence and death in relation to private and public commemoration.

Keywords: W. B. Yeats, elegy, afterlife, death, Jahan Ramazani, Edna Longley, Wilfred Owen, Charles Sorley, poets

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.