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Five modes of “listening deeply” to pastoral sounds

Gifford, T (2016) 'Five modes of “listening deeply” to pastoral sounds.' Green Letters: Studies in Ecocriticism, 20 (1). pp. 8-19. ISSN 1468-8417

Abstract

In his 'Tales from Ovid' Ted Hughes writes that in the Age of Gold people ‘listened deeply to the source’. This essay asks what this might mean, what modes of listening might achieve this and how we would recognise it. Beginning this discussion with a georgic folk song, which appears to be about harvest workers pastoralising their work, this essay opens up the first of five modes of listening by suggesting that there is a playful, harvest home, self-ironic listening mode at work here. Discussion moved from Andrew Marvel’s ‘The Garden’ to Bob Dylan’s song ‘Highlands’ to Keats’ ‘The Nightgale’. The final line of Coleridge’s poem ‘This Lime-Tree Bower my Prison’ is tested with reference to a passage from Cormac McCarthy’s 'All the Pretty Horses'. Recent research offers examples of listening from the Hawai’an people and from Blackfeet country in Montana.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: pastoral, biosemiotics, romanticism, folk song
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0080 Criticism
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0441 Literary History
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2017 22:52
Last Modified: 28 Sep 2017 08:40
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