Linton- Life in the Collections
50) The Poorhouse Fugitives. Self-Taught Poets and Poetry in Victorian Britain.
This anthology of working-class poetry comes from a noted social historian with a specific interest in early Victorian print culture. It is divided into three sections: one which represents actual Chartist literature, then a more ambitious “Parnassian” strand and finally a poetry of rather regional character, mainly steeped in dialect. The collection fuses examples of better known radical writers such as Linton, Gerald Massey, Thomas Cooper and Ernest Jones with those of numerous neglected autodidacts and their reflections in the reviews of authors including Thomas Carlyle and Friedrich Engels. Included is Linton’s title-lending poem Bob –Thin or Poorhouse Fugitive and some excerpts of his poetic cycle Rhymes and reasons against landlordism.