Survey of Literature: Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney and Dylan Thomas
Citation: Arindam Ghosh*, Survey of Literature: Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney and Dylan Thomas 2018, 6(9) : 17-29
In this article I attempt to carry out a detailed survey regarding the previous critical attention the selected poets, namely Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney and Dylan Thomas got from various critics concerned with diverse perspectives and argue in favour of the application of ecocritical theoretical postulates to their bulk of poetical works. All of them being modernist poets are writing in the same industrialized, sophisticated and post-war setting, although Dylan Thomas is a little earlier his poetry has its validity in the post-war context. Despite our socio-cultural and psycho-physiological distancing it is curious that all the poets have given considerable prominence to nature in their works. Initially, however, they show that the bond between man and nature is fractured, nature being preeminently hostile threatening man's existence; but ultimately we have the tranquil picture of man either in harmony with nature or seeking refuge and consolation in the lap of nature (both out of love of nature and to avoid drabness and toxicity of industrial existence). Excepting Heaney to some extent none of them excessively glorifies nature; their depiction realistically verges on the basic instincts, raw physicality, mutual interdependence, inherent in nature and display acute concern for the flourishing and well being of non-human life; even Heaney opposed the thought of complete evasion into nature which the Romantics often did or at least contemplated. Although they have their own different approach in their pursuit of nature, for Heaney follows the tradition of Wordsworth and Hardy, and Thomas and Hughes are in the line of Lawrence and Blake, in their poetry the dualism between nature and culture, reason and emotion, culture's corruption and pastoral's impulse to return to nature have become the predominate theme.