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«...a thousand graceful subtleties»

Rhetoric in the Poetry of Robinson Jeffers


Terry Beers

Robinson Jeffers' poetry has always taught that men and women «shine» through their endurance, through their acts of courage, and through their appreciation for the transcendent beauty of the natural world. This study uses Aristotle's descriptions of ethos, logos, and pathos to launch an inquiry into the rhetorical means by which Jeffers teaches these lessons, and finally argues that Jeffers' literary and rhetorical artistry made him into a twentieth-century American epic poet.

«Terry Beers' '...a thousand graceful subtleties': 'Rhetoric in the Poetry of Robinson Jeffers' combines Aristotelian and Burkean rhetoric to offer the fullest demonstration we have yet had of how Jeffers' sense of nature, poetic forms, and philosophical perspective interact to produce a singularly powerful and significant modern poetry. The book not only offers an important approach to reading Jeffers but shows as well how modern rhetorical analysis can inform literary studies - and why it should.» (Tim Hunt, Washington State University, Vancouver, editor of the 'Collected Poetry of Robinson Jeffers')