Fellows

Andrea Brady, “Forms of Verse and Forms of Bondage: Theorizing the Constraints of Lyric Poetry”

Andrea Brady
Andrea Brady, Queen Mary University of London

In the opening lines of his most famous poem, “To Althea, From Prison,” Richard Lovelace writes, “Stone walls do not a prison make, nor iron bars a cage…” This line expresses a thought common among imprisoned writers across time—that regardless of the conditions of their imprisonment, the human spirit and the poetic imagination cannot be constrained. Fellow Andrea Brady, however, suggests that the relationship between our poetic traditions and bondage has not been adequately explored in prior scholarly work.

In this podcast, Brady discusses her current project, which explores how poets over the centuries have treated both literal and metaphorical forms of bondage, not only as subject matter for their verse but as a powerful force in shaping the lyric tradition.