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Devolutionary Readings

English-Language Poetry and Contemporary Wales


Matthew Jarvis

The September 1997 vote approving devolution, albeit by a tiny margin, was a watershed moment in recent Welsh history. This volume of essays considers the English-language poetic life of Wales since that point. Addressing a range of poets who are associated with Wales by either birth or residence and have been significantly active in the post-1997 period, it seeks to understand the various ways in which Wales’s Anglophone poetic life has been intertwined both with devolutionary matters specifically and the life of contemporary Wales more generally, as well as providing detailed scrutiny of work by key figures. The purpose of the book is thus to offer insights into how English-language poetry and contemporary Wales intersect, exploring the contours of a diverse and vibrant poetic life that is being produced at a time of important cultural and political developments within Wales as a whole.

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About the author


Matthew Jarvis is Professor and Anthony Dyson Fellow in Poetry in the Faculty of Humanities and Performing Arts at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David. Between 2012 and 2015 he also worked on the research project ‘Devolved Voices: Welsh Poetry in English since 1997’, which was based in the Department of English and Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University and funded by the Leverhulme Trust. He is an expert on the development of the English-language poetry of Wales since the 1960s and has particular interests in environmental approaches to the understanding of literature and the literary construction of Welsh space and place.

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