Document Type

Article

Journal or Conference Title

SEL Studies in English Literature

ISSN

0039-3657

Volume

54

Issue

4

First Page

901

Last Page

922

Publication Date

Fall 2014

Department

Literature and Languages

Abstract

This essay considers the relationship between Robert Louis Stevenson’s well-loved adventure classic Treasure Island and his philosophical commitments to talk. For Stevenson, talking and adventuring share an experiential poetics that emphasizes responsiveness to unpredictable interactions. By examining several of Stevenson’s prose pieces, including “Talk and Talkers” and “My First Book” as well as Treasure Island, this essay argues that the novel aspires to translate the poetics of talk into a print medium. Treasure Island imagines itself as a form of “living print,” a work that, like Long John Silver’s parrot, seems more dynamic than print typically is, yet is still ultimately incapable of talk’s interactivity.

Rights

Copyright © 2014 SEL Studies in English Literature. All rights reserved.

Publisher Statement

Originally published as Wong, Amy R. "The Poetics of Talk in Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island." SEL Studies in English Literature 1500-1900 54.4 (2014): 901-922.

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