Literature, Journalism, and the Vocabularies of Liberalism: by J. Macleod

By J. Macleod

This booklet examines the influence of the recent liberalism on English literary discourse from the fin-de-siècle to global battle One. It maps out an intensive community of newshounds, males of letters and political theorists, displaying how their shared political and literary vocabularies provide new readings of liberalism's relation to an rising modernist tradition.

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V. Lucas, she possessed ‘the most fastidious mind’ he had ‘ever known’, characterized by a moderation and evenness in her prose style that caused E. K. 71 Meynell, who edited Merry England d with her husband Wilfred, did much of her writing for W. E. Henley and also for the Pall Mall Gazette 24 Literature, Journalism, and the Vocabularies of Liberalism after it had been lost to the liberals in 1895 and edited by Harry Cust. She also wrote art criticism, as did others such as Graham R. Tomson, who contributed to ‘Wares’, Elizabeth Pennell (who, with her husband Joseph Pennell, wrote for the Starr and then the Daily Chronicle under Massingham) and Edith Simcox.

T. 50 Hobson, who worked on both the Speakerr and the Nation, was also a member of South Place and a founding member of the Rainbow Circle, an important centre of radicalism within the Liberal Party from 1894 to 1924. In a different mode, newly formed professional associations such as the Historical Association (founded 1906) and the English Association (founded 1907), while not party-political, were dominated by members with Liberal party allegiances. I am particularly concerned with what might be termed second-level networks and the institutions with which they were associated.

In different respects, this strong religious current was both reinforced and broadened by their reading patterns. In addition to the obvious immersion in the Bible and the Greek and Latin classics, references to Shakespeare, Milton, Wordsworth, Shelley, Scott, Heine, Carlyle, Browning and Ruskin reappear in their memoirs, as do the works of major Victorian novelists, and many of them were frequent attendees at various literary societies, particularly the Shelley Society, the Browning Society and the Wordsworth Society (all of which were established in the 1870s and 1880s).

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