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ISSN : 1226-4946(Print)
ISSN : 2288-5412(Online)
The Yeats Journal of Korea Vol.34 pp.145-174

Resistance and Postcoloniality of W. B. Yeats’s ‘Crazy Jane Peoms’

Cho Jung-Myung


This paper aims at exploring the postcolonial aspects of William Butler Yeats’spoetry, especially the ‘Crazy Jane Poems’ written approximately from 1929 to 193l.The term ‘postcolonial’ means ‘anti-colonial.’ In Ireland, during the colonial stateand the partially postcolonial state, Yeats’s involvement with Irish politics had neverbeen static, straightforward, or comfortable. Whereas most critics see these poemsfrom the feminist perspective, I regard them as the attempts to decolonialize Irelandfrom the British colonialists as well as the bitter critical insight on the rigid ethicsof Irish Catholicism.
‘Crazy Jane’ resembles the Cailleach Bhearra, the goddess who serves not onlyas historian of the land and teacher of the farmers but also as bearer ofsovereignty. Therefore her challenge to the colonial legacy is identified with thenewly formed Irish state. What are the most abject of British stereotypes of Ireland-recklessness, vagrancy, violence and so on-ironically transform themselvesthrough ‘Crazy Jane’ into the antithetical values of passion, earthiness, andexuberance. Overthrowing the preconditions of British and Church authorities, shecriticizes both the Irish Catholic Church and the British authority which hasappropriated Ireland. In addition, by using the ballad form, Yeats consolidates thenationalist intent of these poems.
Therefore, ‘Crazy Jane’ may be identified with Yeats' alter ego, the personalitythat represents Yeats’ various ideological positions. Subverting the British colonialistson the same stereotypes that British colonialists used to exploit the Irish people, shedenounces both the stiff ethics of Irish Catholicism and the prevailing Irishpatriarchy. Therefore, we can conclude that ‘Crazy Jane’ resembles a cubist iconthat superimposes the double aspects of the Irish postcolonial state.

‘크레이지 제인 시편’에 재현된 저항성과 탈식민성



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