Idle Worship: Kenneth Grahame's Literary Paganism

Title: Idle Worship: Kenneth Grahame's Literary Paganism
Authors: Swim, Jeffrey
Date: 2016
Abstract: In this thesis, I explore the works of Kenneth Grahame in light of what some critics have deemed “literary paganism”. I argue that Grahame employs certain “pagan” tropes in order to launch a critique of modern culture. Grahame upholds a classical vision of leisure that rejects the ideology inherent to urbanization. His critique of modernity relies on a literary persona indicative of an alternative attitude to that of the middle class fin de siècle urban culture. His short stories add to this critique in their presentation of childhood as a pre-converted pagan existence which en-kindles a sense of disappointment with routinized adult life in the modern city. The Wind in the Willows embodies Grahame's vision of true leisure which is depicted in both the River Bank animals and their wetland ecosystem itself. By paying close attention to the pagan themes in Grahame’s writing, we gain a comprehensive view of his often misunderstood body of work.
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -