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A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle

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A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle
A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle is a long poem by Hugh MacDiarmid written in Scots and published in 1926. It is composed as a form of monologue with influences from stream of consciousness genres of writing. A poem of extremes, it ranges between comic and serious modes and examines a wide range of cultural, sexual, political, scientific, existential, metaphysical and cosmic themes, ultimately unified through one consistent central thread, the poet's emotionally and intellectually charged contemplation, from a male perspective, of the condition of Scotland. It also includes extended and complex responses to figures from European and Russian literature, in particular Dostoevsky and Nietzsche, as well as referencing topical events and personalities of the mid-1920s such as Isadora Duncan or the UK General Strike of 1926. It is one of the major modernist literary works of the 20th century.

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