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13. Chapters 19-21: “The last thing these patients need is a sympathetic audience”
About this Lecture
In this module, we explore Chapters 19-21, looking in particular at Prior’s burgeoning relationship with Sarah, and his insistence that she learn nothing about the war (“Somehow if she’d known the worst parts, she couldn’t have gone on being a haven for him”), the remarkably poignant end of Owen and Sassoon’s relationship (“Sassoon patted him on the shoulder, and was gone. Nothing else, not even ‘goodbye’”), Rivers’ reflection on how war impacts men and women differently (“That would help to account for the greater prevalence of anxiety neuroses and hysterical disorders in women in peacetime”), and the arrival of Dr Yealland, a man whose methods are altogether more brutal and horrifying that what we have seen with Rivers (“The last thing these patients need is a sympathetic audience”).
In this course, we explore Pat Barker’s ‘Regeneration’. Set in 1917 in Craiglockhart War Hospital in Edinburgh, the novel follows psychiatrist William Rivers as he treats shell-shocked soldiers, including the poets Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen. This course sees Professor John McRae (University of Nottingham) read through novel chapter-by-chapter, focusing on key moments and episodes in the novel, thinking about the wider themes and issues with which this rich, complex, and enjoyable novel is engaged.
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. (2018, August 15). Pat Barker: Regeneration - Chapters 19-21: “The last thing these patients need is a sympathetic audience” [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://massolit.io/courses/pat-barker-regeneration/chapters-19-21-the-last-thing-these-patients-need-is-a-sympathetic-audience
McRae, John. "Pat Barker: Regeneration – Chapters 19-21: “The last thing these patients need is a sympathetic audience”." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018, https://massolit.io/courses/pat-barker-regeneration/chapters-19-21-the-last-thing-these-patients-need-is-a-sympathetic-audience