Tag: Short Introductions


What is Metaphysical Poetry?

By Dr Oliver Tearle What is metaphysical poetry? And who were the metaphysical poets? In this post about metaphysical poetry we’re going to take a closer look at the origins of the term and some examples of this curious and enigmatic school of early modern poetry.


What is the superego in Freudian psychoanalysis?

What is the superego? Previously, we’ve introduced the id and the concept of the ego as Freud formulated them in psychoanalysis. But the superego is a little different from both. How we can best define the superego and its function is something that becomes easier if we first summarise or […]


What is an Allegory?

What is an allegory? And what examples of allegory are there in English literature? An allegory is, put simply, a story that has a double meaning: as The Penguin Dictionary of Literary Terms and Literary Theory puts it, an allegory has a primary or surface meaning, but it also has […]

Secret Library

What is a Villanelle?

In this week’s Dispatches from The Secret Library, Dr Oliver Tearle introduces one of the most distinctive, and contentious, verse forms ‘What is a villanelle?’ is a question that anyone who encounters the word is likely to be stumped by, since, unlike a sonnet or a limerick, its precise structure […]