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11. Like Earning a Living
About this Lecture
In this module, we read through the tenth poem in the collection, 'Like Earning a Living', focusing in particular on: (i) the continuation of time from the previous few poems – from childhood ('Stafford Afternoons', 'Brothers'), through school ('Welltread', 'The Good Teachers') and now onto getting a job and "earning a living"; (ii) the negativity of the poem, the loss of innocence and the general sense of apathy; and (iii) the use of (deliberately) feeble jokes to emphasise the atmosphere of non-responsiveness.
In this course, Professor John McRae (University of Nottingham) explores Carol Ann Duffy’s 1993 collection, ‘Mean Time'. After an introductory module in which we think about the poetry of Carol Ann Duffy in general and the collection as a whole – and especially the implications of its title – the course continues with a reading and analysis of each of the thirty-nine poems in the collection, one by one.
John McRae is Special Professor of Language in Literature Studies and Teaching Associate in the School of English at Nottingham University, and holds Visiting Professorships in China, Malaysia, Spain and the USA. He is co-author of The Routledge History of Literature in English with Ron Carter, and also wrote The Language of Poetry, Literature with a Small 'l' and the first critical edition of Teleny by Oscar Wilde and others.
Cite this Lecture
McRae, J. (2021, March 01). Carol Ann Duffy: Mean Time - Like Earning a Living [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/carol-ann-duffy-mean-time/like-earning-a-living
McRae, John. "Carol Ann Duffy: Mean Time – Like Earning a Living." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 01 Mar 2021, https://massolit.io/courses/carol-ann-duffy-mean-time/like-earning-a-living