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Carol Ann Duffy: The World's Wife

30. Demeter

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About this Lecture


In this module, we think about the thirtieth and final poem in the collection, 'Demeter', focusing in particular on: (i) the myth of Demeter, Persephone and Hades, which we first see in the Homeric Hymn to Demeter; (ii) the reimagining of the myth in Botticelli's Primavera (late 1470s or early 1480s); and (iii) the responsibility of women (in this myth) in maintaining all life on earth.


In this course, Professor John McRae (University of Nottingham) explores Carol Ann Duffy’s 1999 collection, 'The World's Wife'. After a brief introduction to the collection as a whole, the course continue with a read-through and analysis of each of the thirty poems in the collection, one by one.


John McRae is Special Professor of Language in Literature Studies and Teaching Associate in the School of English at Nottingham University, and holds Visiting Professorships in China, Malaysia, Spain and the USA. He is co-author of The Routledge History of Literature in English with Ron Carter, and also wrote The Language of Poetry, Literature with a Small 'l' and the first critical edition of Teleny by Oscar Wilde and others.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

McRae, J. (2020, April 28). Carol Ann Duffy: The World's Wife - Demeter [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

McRae, J. "Carol Ann Duffy: The World's Wife – Demeter." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 28 Apr 2020,