I am preparing to feature Dr Marie McAllister’s Eighteenth Century Audio site, which is an absolutely stellar example of a course created resource cum Google-indexed treasure trove of public domain poetry readings (I posted about the site earlier this year here). In fact, a group on Librivox was so inspired by the site that they are using the example to create an 18th Century Poetry and Prose book that will be within the public domain—still need additional examples of why universities need to be learning on the open web? It is absolutely imperative for the future of our culture, but more on this anon.
For the moment I want to focus on a video I found through Caroline Schumacher’s blog, a UMW student who has been searching out audio versions of 18th century poetry for the site this semester (she posted 43 new poems to the site just last night—how sick is she?!). She just recently made an interesting move from only adding straight audio readings to also including video readings (YouTube providing a rich archive of poetry readings accompanied by visual montage). She just made a discovery that is very trippy, it’s a reading of Thomas Gray’s “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” in which an image of Gray’s face has been animated so that it looks as if he is actually reading the poem. Come to find out this is the work of Jim Clark, who has the handle poetryanimations on YouTube, and has animated 186 poems, all of which are “read” by the poet. Here’s a few for you psychedelic pleasure: