Co-founder of imagism with Ezra Pound and Hilda Doolittle (H.D.), Richard Aldington, was also a bestseller war novelist who described and denounced the horrors of World War I in his first novel Death of a Hero, which recently received new recognition thanks to its reissue in the Penguin Classics (2013). Although written well before the eco-critical turn, the novel actually makes use of complex–pastoral features in order to explore issues connected to war. This paper thus aims to present Death of a Hero as a novel containing not only the ‘three general strands of usage’ of the Pastoral literary convention, but also a treatment of the war, ‘the ultimate anti-pastoral’, through literary devices which can be read as characteristic of a post-pastoral novel.
- Literature and Literary Theory
- Richard Aldington
- Terry Gifford