Adams - Reasons for Sailing: Traces of Artifice and its Use in "Among School Children" and "Meditations in Time of Civil War"
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Greetings New or Continuing Yeats Enthusiasts

Entering Yeats scholarship causes you to feel like you’ve simultaneously gained and lost something. What you’ve gained is some enlightened understanding of great art and all the various elements that go into creating it. You also walk away empassioned through Yeats’ passion, and enriched through Yeats’ personal and career-long journey toward enrichment. Since so much is written on him, and he is rightfully considered one of the best poets to have graced the written word, you can intimately follow Yeats’ work, personal life and career and burden yourselves with some of the most difficult and challenging thoughts humans have trapped within the confines of art. And therein lies where you’ve lost something. Reading Yeats is losing your innocence. You can’t read through the poet blissfully thinking that you bring enough intellect to the table to explicate every meaning and understand every metaphysical nugget. Once you think you grasp one element of Yeats, the poet complicates your understanding and makes you not only question the paradox in front of you, but forces you to question the understandings you collected in previous Yeats readings.

What you have in front of you is our best attempt to engage Yeats and provide you some small insight into understanding the poet as you explore his work. Phantasmagoria encapsulates our semester-long journey and is no way an exhaustive study of Yeats, but we do hope to provide a small sample of scholarship, and we do so by focusing on three important categories: I) Yeats’ Career and Work In Irish Nationalism, II) Mask, Artifice and Desire, and III) Yeats’ Consideration of Gender.


I. Yeats’ Career and Work in Irish Nationalism


II. Mask, Artiface and Desire


III. Yeats’ Consideration of Gender



Yeats said in one of his more well-known poems, “The Second Coming,” that “everywhere / The ceremony of innocence is drowned.” We hope that even though we’ve helped drown out your personal ceremony, that our scholarship has been of some use to you and that you’ll profit from getting lost in the undertow that is William Butler Yeats.

Welcome and Enjoy!

~vincent adams

Writing@CSU Home Page | Writing Gallery | Phantasmagoria | Vincent Adams