‘Northern working-class spectator sports’: Tony Harrison’s Continuous

Gill, J. (2012) ‘Northern working-class spectator sports’: Tony Harrison’s Continuous. In: Cockin, K. (ed.) The Literary North. Palgrave Macmillan: London, pp. 157-174. ISBN 9781349349593 (doi: 10.1057/9781137026873_10)

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Tony Harrison’s poetry is rooted emphatically in the idiom and atmosphere of northern working-class life. His writing ranges from lyric poetry through the controversial and timely V. to dramatic works such as Prometheus and The Mysteries, but it is in the poems of Continuous: 50 Sonnets from the School of Eloquence (1981) that we most clearly see Harrison’s identification — in Robert Crawford’s sense of a self-conscious allegiance with a ‘particular territory’ (1993: 1) — with this locus. In Harrison’s case, as this chapter will argue, the identification is not only with a physical place or ‘territory’ (the North) but with a specific familial and class history at a particular moment in time — with the postindustrial North in the throes of Thatcherism.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gill, Professor Jo
Authors: Gill, J.
College/School:College of Arts
Publisher:Palgrave Macmillan

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