The Romantics invented the modern idea of childhood.
In the third of his lectures on the rhetoric of Romanticism, Jonathan Bate will explore how they did so, with particular emphasis on the role of children in the poetry of Blake and Wordsworth. He will also show how Wordsworth's memory of his own childhood allowed him to invent something else as well: the art of poetic autobiography.
Professor Bate was Gresham Professor of Rhetoric from 2017-19. He is a British academic, biographer, critic, broadcaster, novelist and scholar. He specialises in Shakespeare, Romanticism and Ecocriticism. He is Professor of English Literature at the University of Oxford, Provost of Worcester College, Oxford, and Honorary Fellow of Creativity at Warwick Business School.