Algernon Charles Swinburne (1837-1909), dramatist, novelist and critic, was late Victorian England's unofficial Poet Laureate. Swinburne was admired by his contemporaries for his technical brilliance, his facility with classical and medieval forms, and his courage in expressing his sensual, erotic imagination. He was one of the most important Victorian poets, the founding figure for British aestheticism, and the dominant influence for fin-de-siecle and many modernist poets. This collection of eleven new essays by leading international scholars offers a thorough revaluation of this fascinating and complex figure. It situates him in the light of current critical work on cosmopolitanism, politics, form, Victorian Hellenism, gender and sexuality, the arts, and aestheticism and its contested relation to literary modernism. The essays in this collection reassess Swinburne's work and reconstruct his vital and often provocative contribution to the Victorian cultural debate. -- .
Catherine Maxwell is Professor of Victorian Literature at Queen Mary, University of London|Stefano Evangelista is Fellow and Tutor in English at Trinity College, University of Oxford. -- .
Introduction - Catherine Maxwell and Stefano Evangelista Cultural Discourse 1. Swinburne's French voice: cosmopolitanism and cultural mediation in aesthetic criticism - Stefano Evangelista 2. Swinburne's swimmers: from insular peace to the Anglo-Boer War - Julia F. Saville 3. Swinburne: a nineteenth-century Hellene? - Charlotte Ribeyrol 4. 'A juggler's trick'? Swinburne and journalism 1857-75 - Laurel Brake Form 5. Metrical discipline: Algernon Swinburne on 'The Flogging Block' - Yopie Prins 6. What goes around: A Century of Roundels - Herbert Tucker 7. Desire lines: Swinburne and lyric crisis - Marion Thain Influence 8. 'Good Satan': the unlikely poetic affinity of Swinburne and Christina Rossetti - Dinah Roe 9. Parleying with Robert Browning: Swinburne's aestheticism, blasphemy, and the dramatic monologue - Sara Lyons 10. Whose muse? Sappho, Swinburne, and Amy Lowell - Sarah Parker 11. Atmosphere and absorption: Swinburne, Eliot, Drinkwater - Catherine Maxwell Index -- .