The Representations of Nothingness as a Place in Keats’s Poetry

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Yasir A. Al-Jumaili


This paper addresses the theme of Keats and place in which I explore the problem of Keats and no place. The existence of “no place” is a key element in the poetry of John Keats. One of the obvious manifestations of “no place” is the use of nothingness which occupies a particular symbolic significance in his works. In my paper, I argue that Keats’s poems show evidence that the poet featured nothingness as a place which is characterized by emptiness and void where things fall and disappear forever. The abstract state of nothingness is represented as a hateful and undesired destination that the poet does not want to be placed in. The paper focuses on the representations of nothingness in three selected poems: “Sleep and Poetry,” “Endymion,” and “When I Have Fears,” respectively. In these poems, Keats constructs nothingness as a “locus” which is associated with negativity and passivity. My paper suggests another possible reading of Keats’s poems in relation to the themes of place and space.


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Al-Jumaili, Y. A. (2020) “The Representations of Nothingness as a Place in Keats’s Poetry”, Koya University Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences, 3(1), pp. 59-62. doi: 10.14500/kujhss.v3n1y2020.pp59-62.
Author Biography

Yasir A. Al-Jumaili, Department of English Language, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Koya University, Kurdistan Region, Iraq

Yasir Al-Jumaili, is an academic staff at the Department of English Language, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Koya University in Kurdistan Region, Iraq. He holds a BA in English Language and Literature, University of Baghdad (2000) and MA in English Medieval Literature, University of Baghdad (2004). He got his PhD in Romantic Poetry/Cognitive study, The University of Sheffield, UK (2018). His research interests lie at the interface between language and literature, such as disciplines of stylistics, cognitive poetics and discourse analysis. He is particularly interested in Cognitive metaphor theories. His research and teaching are closely related. The modules that he contributes to undergraduate level include: Romantic and Victorian Poetry, Renaissance Poetry and Metaphysical Poetry. He also contributes to postgraduate courses where he teaches Romantic Poetry and Literary Theory and Criticism.


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