Date of Award


Degree Name



College of Liberal Arts

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Sherri Smith

Second Advisor

Edmund Taft

Third Advisor

Gwyneth Hood


This thesis argues that the Keatsian critical canon refuses to acknowledge the influence of Celticism in the works of John Keats and that such a gap displaces his poems from their cultural context and also prevents re-readings that might add depth and distinction to his place in the Romantic canon. After discussing the Celticism inherent in the literature, art, and social phenomenon of Keats’s day and briefly reviewing the scarce criticism that exists on the topic, the author reveals the prevalence of Celtic philosophies, figures, myths, and settings in Keats’s poetry. Then, she further argues that Keats through the feminized Celtic influence inverts traditional poetic plot structure by converging both subject and object of desire to, essentially, represent the end of desire. This distinction, she concludes, both exhibits Keats’s handling of the Celtic influence and also reveals a probable cause for the lack of critical debate on Celticism in the work of John Keats.


Keats, John, 1795-1821 - Criticism and interpretation.

Celts in literature.