Scholar Tara Guissin-Stubbs, Associate Professor in English Literature and Director of Studies in English Literature and Creative Writing at Oxford University, lectures on “Symbols from Within, and Symbols from Without: The Celtic Revival and the Harlem Renaissance” as part of Princeton University’s 2020-21 Fund for Irish Studies series.
This talk considers James Weldon Johnson’s assertion in his Preface to The Book of American Negro Poetry (1922) that the black poet needs to find ‘symbols from within rather than symbols from without’ in order to find a suitable form; in so doing, Johnson contends, the poet will be doing ‘something like what Synge did for the Irish’. It will discuss overlaps between the Celtic Revival and the Harlem Renaissance to try to understand just what Johnson meant, and what this means for us now.
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The Fund for Irish Studies affords all Princeton students, and the community at large, a wider and deeper sense of the languages, literatures, drama, visual arts, history, politics, and economics not only of Ireland but of “Ireland in the world.” The series is produced by the Lewis Center for the Arts and the 2020-21 edition of the series is organized by Paul Muldoon.
The Fund for Irish Studies is generously sponsored by the Durkin Family Trust and the James J. Kerrigan, Jr. ’45 and Margaret M. Kerrigan Fund for Irish Studies.