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Landscape or Mindscape? Seamus Heaney's Bogs

Dianne Meredith


In the tradition of literary geography, Seamus Heaney's poetical descriptions of bogs are examined in terms of how closely his imagery fits the physical reality of the landscape itself, While studies in vegetational succession and geomorphology mas help to explain the origin and development of bogs, both in Ireland and worldwide, humanistic geography also considers place-creation to be subjective, based on landscape perceptions which take into account cultural responses as well as purely environmental factors. Poetic license may stretch description of a regional landscape beyond (he confines of measurable reality, bringing to light a stronger objectivity, inclusive not only of the physical environment, but also of the social, psychological, and the historical climate.

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