Tuesday 17 November 2009

poetry and protest

When Daniel Defoe visited the Lake District, he thought it was hideous, even more hideous than Wales. By the time William Wordsworth (pic) had written about the Lake District, everything had changed - including the property prices.

On R4's Start the Week, the environmental historian Harriet Ritvo explained how the changing perception of the Lake District led to the first green coalition of interests to oppose a major new development.

Her new book The Dawn of Green - reviewed in the THES here and the Independent here - details how Wordsworth was responsible for a set of associations that turned the Lake District into 'a national sacred space'.

Start The Week's host Tom Sutcliffe remarked on how

an artist, as it were, composing poems, can set in motion a cultural change which has huge consequences

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