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Liberty and Poetic LicenceNew Essays on Byron$
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Bernard Beatty, Tony Howe, and Charles Robinson

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780853235897

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846315428

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Byron, ‘Ink1e and Yarico’, and the Chains of Love

Byron, ‘Ink1e and Yarico’, and the Chains of Love

(p.103) Byron, ‘Ink1e and Yarico’, and the Chains of Love
Liberty and Poetic Licence

Andrew M. Stauffer

Liverpool University Press

This chapter examines Byron's use of the tale of Inkle and Yarico in Don Juan. In the story, a marooned white merchant falls in love with, impregnates and then betrays and sells a native woman into slavery. In tracing Byron' s use of this story in the Don Juan narrative, we learn more about the complex relation of love to slavery in his imagination. In altering the issues of race and class in ‘Inkle and Yaric’, in reversing the gender of the enslaved lover, and in eliminating the theme of betrayal, Byron transforms this ethical fable into an amoral meditation on the fate of love in the world.

Keywords:   Don Juan, Byron, love, slavery, race, class

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