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Robert Lowell Essay

  • Submitted by: hassanhero
  • on November 24, 2012
  • Category: English
  • Length: 13,822 words

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Below is an essay on "Robert Lowell" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

ROBERT LOWELL’S LIFE-WRITING AND MEMORY

A Thesis Submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the Louisiana State University and Agricultural and Mechanical College in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in The Department of English

by Gye-Yu Kang B.A., Cheju National University, 1986 M.A., Korea University, 1995 August 2003

Table of Contents

Abstract ………………………………………………………………………………….. iii Introduction …………………………………………………………………………….... 1 Chapter One Chapter Two Chapter Three Memory as an Imaginative Reconstruction: 91 Revere Street …... 4 Life Changed to Landscape: Life Studies ………………………... 17 The Past Changes More Than the Present: Day by Day ………. 39

Conclusion ……………………………………………………………………………... 52 Works Cited ……………………………………………………………………………. 55 Vita ……………………………………………………………………………………… 58

ii

Abstract

This

thesis

examines

Robert

Lowell’s

use

of

memory

in

such

autobiographical works as Life Studies and Day by Day. In those volumes, Lowell returns to recollect his private past; his act of remembering becomes the poetic process by which Lowell is able to create the retrospective truth of his life. The most important feature of memory in his life-writing is in its role as an imaginative reconstruction. In the first chapter, I review recent models that regard memory as a reconstructive process. Memory involves more than fact, according to these investigations; it also represents a fictionalizing process of self. In 91 Revere Street, Lowell recollects the incidents from his childhood that seem to be essential to the formation of his self. For Lowell, memory is a way of knowing by which his self learns to recognize itself in the world. In Life Studies, he also explores his lost self in memories and situates it within American culture generally, transposing his own case to the national level. Lowell seems to discard the essentialist idea of self and instead adopts an idea of the self recreated by...

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