Cultural Memory in Seamus Heaney's Late Work
Cultural Memory in Seamus Heaney's Late Work considers the ways that memory functions in Heaney's poetry. Joanne Piavanini argues that the shaping of collective memory is one of Heaney's major contributions as a poet. Locating Heaney in a transnational literary sphere, this book argues that his late work isdefined by a type of cosmopolitanism openness: the work moves beyond national identity to explore multiple allegiances and identifications. Moreover, Piavanini demonstrates that memory is a helpful lens to look at Heaney's late work, in particular, because of the interplay of past, present and future in these works: in the construction of a collective memory of the Troubles; in the use of the elegy to commemorate the passing of important contemporary poets; in his writing on events with transnational significance, such as 9/11; in the slippages between past and present in poems about his family; and through the literary afterlives of texts-specifically, his appropriation of canonical classical texts. Drawing on approaches and concepts from memory studies, Piavanini considers Heaney's late work to develop an analysis of poetry as a vehicle of memory.