Hopkins Festival Lectures 2017

John Berryman in Dublin; his high regard for Hopkins's Poetry

Patrick Samway, S.J. Saint Joseph's University USA


1970 John Berryman: The Art of Poetry No. 16 1970 (theparisreview.org )

The United States has profited enormously from the presence of Irish poets residing on its shores. One might think of Thomas Kinsella, born in the Inchicore area due west of Dublin, who after some studies at University College Dublin entered the Irish civil service, later to become writer in residence at Southern Illinois University and in 1970 professor of English at Temple University. Or perhaps Eavan Boland, a native of Dublin and a graduate of Trinity College, who is currently a professor of English and Director of the Creative Writing Program at Stanford University. If one were to include poets from Northern Ireland, then certainly Paul Muldoon, born on a farm in County Armagh, should be included. At Princeton University, he is both the Howard G. B. Clark Professor in the Humanities and Founding Chair of the Lewis Center for the Arts. And, of course, one must include the late Seamus Heaney from County Londonderry. A Nobel Prize winner, Heaney was professor of English at Harvard from 1981 to 1997, and its poet in residence from 1988 to 2006.

Read Samway on Berryman in Dublin and Hopkins' Poetry

Dark Mind, Light Soul: A Reassessment of
Hopkins’ ‘Terrible Sonnets’

Robert Smart, Quinnipiac University USA


Rather than reflecting a spiritual failure on Hopkins’ part, a final anguished and unanswered call for connection with his god or a deep personal depression, Professor Robert Smart argues that Hopkins' Terrible Sonnets represent an aesthetic crisis, a period in which Hopkins’ reliance on a received, neo-Romantic lexicon to express his grasp of God’s work needed to change as his materials and self-understanding grew.

Read Robert Smart on Hopkins' Terrible Sonnets

Neurosis, Gerard Manley Hopkins and Art

Desmond Egan, Poet, Artistic Director The Gerard Manley Hopkins Festival

Desmond Egan wonders if there there is a necessary connection between Literature and neurosis? A necessary connection, that is; not an accidental one. Art is created by people who have the usual limitations that flesh is heir to. This truism is often overlooked when the link between art and illness comes up for discussion - hence that opening quotation from Illness is part of life. It is an experience which, like any other, will have an influence on the artist.

Read Desmond Egan on Neuros, Hopkins and Art

munch the scream
Edvard Monch The Scream

Watch this space for more great Hopkins Lectures from Hopkins Festival 2017