Several members of the Laboring-Class Poets Online research group will present their recent work at the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies conference in Minneapolis, MN later this month.
Biographical details about each individual poet, such as birthplace, occupation, associated locations and emigration patterns, form an important structural/organizing feature of the LCPO database. One might wonder why these entry fields are necessary for a project that specifically focuses on poetry, an aesthetic medium that certain theorists would argue should be removed from any potential authorial impositions on the text and treated objectively.
One of the defining features of the Labouring-Class Poet tradition is the sense of community shared between these poets. Because they were so conscious of their sense of ‘place’, both in society and geographically, common bonds formed between those from similar areas. One of the first things the LCPO Database makes apparent is these specific links: it helps scholars to group the poets from Paisley together, those from Bristol, those from Tyneside.
When we talk of someone dying too young, or dying before his/her time, what do we mean?
One interesting category of distinction highlighted in the Database of Laboring-Class Poets and illuminated on the new Omeka site [deprecated] through the use of tags is “tragic youth.” As we complete our data entry, we have the chance to reevaluate our use of terms like “tragic youth,” which can be problematic for a number of reasons.