Rocky Mountain Review

Volume 62, Number 1


Translatio and the Constructs of a Roman Nation in Virgil's Aeneid

Kimberly K. Bell 
Sam Houston State University

This essay examines Virgil's use of rhetorical topos known as translatio studii et imperii (the transferal of culture and empire) in his epic Aeneid. This topos, a literary strategy whereby an author borrows from and adapts the cultural and political authority of one culture for his own political, historical, or aesthetic purposes, is utilized by Virgil to construct a national identity for Rome on par with that of ancient Greece. Virgil achieves such political ends by creating distinct parallels between his hero Aeneas and the princeps Augustus.

McTeague's Gilded Prison

David McGlynn 
Lawrence University

While a number of critics note the presence of the pet canary that McTeague keeps in a little gilt cage by the window, most elide its importance, treating the bird and its gilded cage as either unintentionally placed or as an otherwise unremarkable aspect of the novel's setting. But the canary provides the key to understanding McTeague's transformation from a "sluggish," yet "docile" dentist to a violent transient who beats his wife to death and makes off with her savings. The novel aligns the canary chittering in its little gilt prison with McTeague's middle-class life in San Francisco, revealing McTeague's life as one imprisoned by the city. I turn away from the popular arguments of biological determinism often used to explain McTeague's degenerate behavior and to categorize American Naturalism and instead view McTeague as a critique of the folly of urban, middle-class life in which the desire to own frivolous objects incites confusion, greed, and eventually brutal acts of violence.


Leslie Norris and Exile

James Prothero 
Santa Ana College

Less than two years after his death, the books of Welsh poet and resident of Utah, Leslie Norris, are close to going out of print. Norris' powerful and Romantic poetry and short stories do not deserve such a fate. Like Robert Frost, Norris found his poetic voice in exile. Norris left a successful teaching career in Britain in middle age to focus his life on being a poet. After a series of one-year appointments as writer in residence, his Brigham Young University job became permanent and allowed him to develop a voice that at once is full of the imagery of his Welsh past and of his adopted Mountain West home. This essay argues that exile and the sense of exile are quintessential American traits, and thus that Norris had unwittingly become a distinctly American poet. His work resonates with the nature writing coming out of the West in the late 20th century. Norris is one of the finest voices in Welsh and American literature and should not be consigned to literary oblivion.


Approaches to Teaching the Song of Roland, ed. William W. Kibler and Leslie Zarker Morgan 
Reviewer: Albrecht Classen

Isabelle of France: Capetian Sanctity and Franciscan Identity in the Thirteenth Century, by Sean L. Field 
Reviewer: Albrecht Classen

The Place of Thought: The Complexity of One in Late Medieval French Didactic Poetry, by Sarah Kay 
Reviewer: Wendolyn Weber

Voice in Motion: Staging Gender, Shaping Sound in Early Modern England, by Gina Bloom 
Reviewer: Liberty Stanavage

Shakespeare the Thinker, by A.D. Nuttall 
Reviewer: Kirk Rasmussen

A Sonnet from Carthage: Garcilaso de la Vega and the New Poetry of Sixteenth-Century Europe, by Richard Helgerson 
Reviewer: Heather C. Easterling

The Captive's Position: Female Narrative, Male Identity, and Royal Authority in Colonial New England, by Teresa A. Toulouse 
Reviewer: Randy Jasmine

Love, Desire and Transcendence in French Literature: Deciphering Eros, by Paul Gifford 
Reviewer: Catherine Marachi

Salonnières, Furies, and Fairies: The Politics of Gender and Cultural Change in Absolutist France, by Anne E. Duggan 
Reviewer: Aleksandra Gruzinska

Beaumarchais in Seville, by Hugh Thomas 
Reviewer: Barbara Petrosky

Frankenstein, A Cultural History, by Susan Tyler Hitchcock 
Reviewer: Jacob Hughes

Women and Gender in the American West, ed. Mary Ann Irwin and James F. Brooks 
Reviewer: Theda Wrede

Imperial Masochism: British Fiction, Fantasy, and Social Class, by John Kucich 
Reviewer: Susan E. Cook

Franklin Evans or The Inebriate, A Tale of the Times, by Walt Whitman, ed. Christopher Castiglia and Glenn Hendler 
Reviewer: Alex Wulff

The Fin de Siècle Poem: English Literary Culture in the 1890s, ed. Joseph Bristow 
Reviewer: Anthony Flinn

Persephone Unbound: Dionysian Aesthetics in the Works of Anna de Noailles, by Catherine Perry 
Reviewer: Pamela Park

A History of Austrian Literature 1918-2000, ed. Katrin Kohl and Ritchie Robertson 
Reviewer: Daniel C. Villanueva

Complete Poems: Claude McKay, ed. William J. Maxwell 
Reviewer: Greg Grewell

The Unfree French: Life Under the Occupation, by Richard Vinen 
Reviewer: Jocelyne Le Ber

Tennessee Williams' Notebooks, by Margaret Bradham Thornton 
Reviewer: Susan Savage Lee

Romanticism Comes of Age and Speaker's Meaning, by Owen Barfield 
Reviewer: Daniel Smitherman

Twentieth-Century Fiction by Irish Women: Nation and Gender, by Heather Ingman 
Reviewer: Jessica Gildersleeve

Kenneth Burke on Shakespeare, ed. Scott L. Newstok 
Reviewer: Susan Nyikos

The Miraculous Lie: Lope de Aguirre and the Search for El Dorado in the Latin American Historical Novel, by Bart L. Lewis 
Reviewer: José I. Suárez

From Surrealism to Less-Exquisite Cadavers: Léo Malet and the Evolution of the French "Roman Noir," by Michelle Emanuel 
Reviewer: Catherine Marachi

No Place for Home: Spatial Constraint and Character Flight in the Novels of Cormac McCarthy, by Jay Ellis 
Reviewer: Craig Monk

Don DeLillo: Balance at the Edge of Belief, by Jesse Kavadlo 
Reviewer: Randy Laist

The Remembered Earth: An Anthology of Contemporary Native American Literature, ed. Geary Hobson 
Reviewer: RosaMaria Chacon

Wisdom Sits in Places: Landscape and Language among the Western Apache, by Keith Basso 
Reviewer: Isabelle Sabau and Mircea Sabau

Italian Through Film: The Classics, by Antonello Borra and Christina Pausini 
Reviewer: Susan Joseph

La France et la Francophone: Conversations with Native Speakers, by Mary Anne O'Neil 
Reviewer: Caren Barnezet Parrish

Spanish for Mental Health Professionals: A Step by Step Book, by Deborah E. Bender et al. 
Reviewer: Ana Isabel Carballal

Spanish for Dental Professionals: A Step by Step Book, by Deborah E. Bender et al
Reviewer: Ana Isabel Carballal

Integrating Literature and Writing Instruction: First-Year English, Humanities Core Courses, Seminars, ed. Judith H. Anderson and Christine R. Farris 
Reviewer: Cynthia Cavanaugh