March 2008

Steven E. Jones, ed., The Satiric Eye: Forms of Satire in the Romantic Period

Steven E. Jones, ed., The Satiric Eye: Forms of Satire in the Romantic Period. New York: Palgrave, 2003. 231pp. $69.95. (Hdbk; ISBN: 0-312-29496-4).

Reviewed by
Talissa J. Ford
University of California, Berkeley

"The man who permits you to injure him deserves your vengeance. He will also receive it. Go, Spectre! Obey my most secret desire," writes William Blake, the romantic satirist conspicuously absent from Steven E. Jones' collection The Satiric Eye: Forms of Satire in the Romantic Period. What this book does particularly well is to consider the relationship between satire and the culture in which it intervenes—what happens, in other words, when that spectre is let loose in the world. From the American satirist-barber J. R. D. Huggins and "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" poet Jane Taylor, to first—and second—generation standards Wordsworth and Byron, The Satiric Eye explores not just the fact but the circulation of satire in the public, consumer culture of Romantic-era England (and America).

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