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Beware of Ruins Essay

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Jhan Hochman is a writer and instructor at Portland Community College in Portland, Oregon. He is the author of Green Cultural Studies: Nature in Film, Novel, and Theory, 1998. In the following essay, Hochman attempts to flesh out and analyze A. D. Hope's notions of romantic reconstruction and romantic reliving of the past.

In "Beware of Ruins" (1981) A. D. Hope cautions against attempts to process the past, to romanticize either it or one's place in it by recalling or recasting these in a favorable, even romantic light. In the first three stanzas of the poem, two kinds of romanticization are cautioned against: imaginative and literal reconstruction of actual ruins. In the final stanza, however, another kind of romanticization is addressed, one that attempts not so much to reconstruct or bring back the past, but imaginatively relive it, relive one's own past by reinserting oneself into one's past memories. Both...

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This section contains 1,526 words
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Buy the Beware of Ruins Study Guide
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Poetry for Students
Beware of Ruins from Poetry for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.