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history of literature

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By History of Literature March 7, By History of Literature February 28, By History of Literature February 22, By History of Literature February 14, By History of Literature February 7, By History of Literature January 31, By History of Literature January 24, By History of Literature January 14, By History of Literature January 10, By History of Literature January 3, By History of Literature December 20, By History of Literature December 13, By History of Literature December 6, By History of Literature November 29, By History of Literature November 22, Woolf solved biographical, historical, and personal dilemmas with the story of Orlando, who lives from Elizabethan times through the entire 18th century; he then becomes female, experiences debilitating gender constraints, and lives into the 20th century.

Orlando begins writing poetry during the Renaissance, using history and mythology as models, and over the ensuing centuries returns to the poem The Oak Tree, revising it according to shifting poetic conventions. Woolf herself writes in mock-heroic imitation of biographical styles that change over the same period of time. Thus, Orlando: A Biography exposes the artificiality of both gender and genre prescriptions.

However fantastic, Orlando also argues for a novelistic approach to biography. Afterward she was increasingly angered by masculine condescension to female talent. In The Waves , poetic interludes describe the sea and sky from dawn to dusk. Between the interludes, the voices of six named characters appear in sections that move from their childhood to old age. This oneness with all creation was the primal experience Woolf had felt as a child in Cornwall.

In this her most experimental novel, she achieved its poetic equivalent. Late work From her earliest days, Woolf had framed experience in terms of oppositions, even while she longed for a holistic state beyond binary divisions. Even before finishing The Waves, she began compiling a scrapbook of clippings illustrating the horrors of war, the threat of fascism, and the oppression of women. For the fictional historical narrative, she relied upon experiences of friends and family from the Victorian Age to the s.

For the essays, she researched that year span of history. The task, however, of moving between fiction and fact was daunting. Woolf took a holiday from The Pargiters to write a mock biography of Flush, the dog of poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning. In Woolf completed Freshwater, an absurdist drama based on the life of her great-aunt Julia Margaret Cameron. Featuring such other eminences as the poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson, and the painter George Frederick Watts, this riotous play satirizes high-minded Victorian notions of art.

Meanwhile, Woolf feared she would never finish The Pargiters. Alternating between types of prose was proving cumbersome, and the book was becoming too long. She solved this dilemma by jettisoning the essay sections, keeping the family narrative, and renaming her book The Years. She narrated 50 years of family history through the decline of class and patriarchal systems, the rise of feminism, and the threat of another war. The novel illustrates the damage done to women and society over the years by sexual repression, ignorance, and discrimination.

When Fry died in , Virginia was distressed; Vanessa was devastated. Vanessa was so disconsolate that Virginia put aside her writing for a time to try to comfort her sister. Woolf connected masculine symbols of authority with militarism and misogyny, an argument buttressed by notes from her clippings about aggression, fascism, and war.

Still distressed by the deaths of Roger Fry and Julian Bell, she determined to test her theories about experimental, novelistic biography in a life of Fry. As she acknowledged in The Art of Biography , the recalcitrance of evidence brought her near despair over the possibility of writing an imaginative biography.

Here surfaced for the first time in writing a memory of the teenage Gerald Duckworth, her other half brother, touching her inappropriately when she was a girl of perhaps four or five. Through last-minute borrowing from the letters between Fry and Vanessa, Woolf finished her biography. During the bombing of London in and , she worked on her memoir and Between the Acts.

In her novel, war threatens art and humanity itself, and, in the interplay between the pageant—performed on a June day in —and the audience, Woolf raises questions about perception and response. Facing such horrors, a depressed Woolf found herself unable to write. The demons of self-doubt that she had kept at bay for so long returned to haunt her. Between the Acts was published posthumously later that year. Furthermore, she avoids the self-absorption of many of her contemporaries and implies a brutal society without the explicit details some of her contemporaries felt obligatory.

She continued writing essays on reading and writing, women and history, and class and politics for the rest of her life. Many were collected after her death in volumes edited by Leonard Woolf. Virginia Woolf wrote far more fiction than Joyce and far more nonfiction than either Joyce or Faulkner. Six volumes of diaries including her early journals , six volumes of letters, and numerous volumes of collected essays show her deep engagement with major 20th-century issues.

Though many of her essays began as reviews, written anonymously to deadlines for money, and many include imaginative settings and whimsical speculations, they are serious inquiries into reading and writing, the novel and the arts, perception and essence, war and peace, class and politics, privilege and discrimination, and the need to reform society. Panthea Reid. Indeed, as a result of late 20th-century rereadings of Modernism, scholars now recognize the central importance of women writers to British Modernism, particularly as manifested in the works of Mansfield, Richardson , May Sinclair, Mary Butts, Rebecca West pseudonym of Cicily Isabel Andrews , Jean Rhys born in the West Indies , and the American poet Hilda Doolittle who spent her adult life mainly in England and Switzerland.

Sinclair, who produced 24 novels in the course of a prolific literary career, was an active feminist and an advocate of psychical research, including psychoanalysis. These concerns were evident in her most accomplished novels, Mary Olivier: A Life and Life and Death of Harriett Frean , which explored the ways in which her female characters contributed to their own social and psychological repression.

From her first and greatly underrated novel, The Return of the Soldier , to later novels such as Harriet Hume , she explored how and why middle-class women so tenaciously upheld the division between private and public spheres and helped to sustain the traditional values of the masculine world.

In her volume Pilgrimage the first volume, Pointed Roofs, appeared in ; the last, March Moonlight, in , Richardson was far more positive about the capacity of women to realize themselves. She presented events through the mind of her autobiographical persona, Miriam Henderson, describing both the social and economic limitations and the psychological and intellectual possibilities of a young woman without means coming of age with the new century. Other women writers of the period also made major contributions to new kinds of psychological realism.

In Bliss and Other Stories and The Garden Party and Other Stories , Mansfield who went to England at age 19 revolutionized the short story by rejecting the mechanisms of plot in favour of an impressionistic sense of the flow of experience, punctuated by an arresting moment of insight.

In Postures , reprinted as Quartet in , Voyage in the Dark , and Good Morning, Midnight , Rhys depicted the lives of vulnerable women adrift in London and Paris, vulnerable because they were poor and because the words in which they innocently believed—honesty in relationships, fidelity in marriage—proved in practice to be empty. Creating heavily symbolic novels based on the quest-romance, such as Ashe of Rings and Armed with Madness , Butts explored a more general loss of value in the contemporary wasteland T.

Eliot was an obvious influence on her work , while Doolittle whose reputation rested upon her contribution to the Imagist movement in poetry used the quest-romance in a series of autobiographical novels—including Paint It Today written in but first published in and Bid Me to Live —to chart a way through the contemporary world for female characters in search of sustaining, often same-sex relationships. Katherine Mansfield.

Her delicate stories, focused upon psychological conflicts, have an obliqueness of narration and a subtlety of observation that reveal the influence of Anton Chekhov. She, in turn, had much influence on the development of the short story as a form of literature. After her education in Wellington and London , Katherine Mansfield left New Zealand at the age of 19 to establish herself in England as a writer.

Her initial disillusion appears in the ill-humoured stories collected in In a German Pension Until she published stories in Rhythm and The Blue Review, edited by the critic and essayist John Middleton Murry, whom she married in after her divorce from George Bowden.

The death of her soldier brother in shocked her into a recognition that she owed what she termed a sacred debt to him and to the remembered places of her native country. Prelude was a series of short stories beautifully evocative of her family memories of New Zealand. These, with others, were collected in Bliss , which secured her reputation and is typical of her art. The last five years of her life were shadowed by tuberculosis.

From her papers, Murry edited the Journal , rev. Richardson passed her childhood and youth in secluded surroundings in late Victorian England. After her schooling, which ended when, in her 17th year, her parents separated, she engaged in teaching, clerical work, and journalism. In she married the artist Alan Elsden Odle. Pilgrimage is an extraordinarily sensitive story, seen cinematically through the eyes of Miriam Henderson, an attractive and mystical New Woman.

Although the length of the work and the intense demand it makes on the reader have kept it from general popularity, it is a significant novel of the 20th century, not least for its attempt to find new formal means by which to represent feminine consciousness. Rebecca West. From West became involved in journalism, contributing frequently to the left-wing press and making a name for herself as a fighter for woman suffrage.

In she published a critical biography of Henry James that revealed something of her lively intellectual curiosity, and she then embarked on a career as a novelist with an outstanding—and Jamesian—novel, The Return of the Soldier Describing the return of a shell-shocked soldier from World War I, the novel subtly explores questions of gender and class, identity and memory.

Published as The Meaning of Treason ; rev. Later she published a similar collection, The New Meaning of Treason Rebecca West: A Celebration, a selection of her works, was published in , and her personal reflection on the turn of the 20th century, , was published in Jean Rhys.

The daughter of a Welsh doctor and a Creole mother, Rhys lived and was educated in Dominica until she went to London at the age of 16 and worked as an actress before moving to Paris. There she was encouraged to write by the English novelist Ford Madox Ford. After moving to Cornwall she wrote nothing until her remarkably successful Wide Sargasso Sea , a novel that reconstructed the earlier life of the fictional character Antoinette Cosway, who was Mr.

Smile Please, an unfinished autobiography, was published in Divisions of class and the burden of sexual repression became common and interrelated themes in the fiction of the s. Evelyn Waugh. John Waugh. After short periods as an art student and schoolmaster, he devoted himself to solitary observant travel and to the writing of novels, soon earning a wide reputation for sardonic wit and technical brilliance.

After the war he led a retired life in the west of England. Those written before may be described as satirical. In Brideshead Revisited he studied the workings of providence and the recovery of faith among the members of a Roman Catholic landed family. Waugh was received into the Roman Catholic Church in Helena, published in , is a novel about the mother of Constantine the Great, in which Waugh re-created one moment in Christian history to assert a particular theological point.

In a trilogy—Men at Arms , Officers and Gentlemen , and Unconditional Surrender —he analyzed the character of World War II, in particular its relationship with the eternal struggle between good and evil and the temporal struggle between civilization and barbarism. The Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, edited by Michael Davie and first published in , was reissued in Scottish novelist whose inventive trilogy published under the collective title A Scots Quair made him a significant figure in the 20th-century Scottish Renaissance.

Mitchell quit school at the age of 16 and worked as a junior reporter in Aberdeen and Glasgow before joining the Royal Army Service Corps in He was stationed at various posts in the Middle East. Discharged in , he reenlisted in the Royal Air Force and worked as a clerk in England for six years. His first book, a work of nonfiction, was published in He published 17 more books—including fiction, short stories, and history—before his death six years later. With the exception of his trilogy and a book on Scotland written with poet Hugh MacDiarmid , these books were published under his real name.

Gibbon published Sunset Song—the first and perhaps best book of his famous trilogy—in It is notable for its masterful recreation of the rhythms and ring of Scots without resort to dialect spellings and Scots vocabulary. Graham Greene. His father was the headmaster of Berkhamsted School, which Greene attended for some years.

After running away from school, he was sent to London to a psychoanalyst in whose house he lived while under treatment. After studying at Balliol College, Oxford, Greene converted to Roman Catholicism in , partly through the influence of his future wife, Vivien Dayrell-Browning, whom he married in He moved to London and worked for The Times as a copy editor from to His first published work was a book of verse, Babbling April , and upon the modest success of his first novel, The Man Within , he quit The Times and worked as a film critic and literary editor for The Spectator until He then traveled widely for much of the next three decades as a freelance journalist, searching out locations for his novels in the process.

He began to come into his own with a thriller, Stamboul Train ; also entitled Orient Express , which plays off various characters against each other as they ride a train from the English Channel to Istanbul. It was followed by three more entertainments that were equally popular with the reading public: A Gun for Sale ; also entitled This Gun For Hire; filmed , The Confidential Agent ; filmed , and The Ministry of Fear ; filmed A fifth entertainment, The Third Man, which was published in novel form in , was originally a screenplay for a classic film directed by Carol Reed.

In this book, Greene contrasts a cheerful and warm-hearted humanist he obviously dislikes with a corrupt and violent teenage criminal whose tragic situation is intensified by a Roman Catholic upbringing. The weak and alcoholic priest tries to fulfill his priestly duties despite the constant threat of death at the hands of a revolutionary government. This book traces the decline of a kind-hearted British colonial officer whose pity for his wife and mistress eventually leads him to commit suicide.

The End of the Affair ; filmed is narrated by an agnostic in love with a woman who forsakes him because of a religious conviction that brings her near to sainthood. The protagonist of A Burnt-Out Case is a Roman Catholic architect tired of adulation who meets a tragic end in the Belgian Congo shortly before that colony reaches independence.

The Quiet American ; filmed and chronicles the doings of a well-intentioned American government agent in Vietnam in the midst of the anti-French uprising there in the early s. His novels display a consistent preoccupation with sin and moral failure acted out in seedy locales characterized by danger, violence, and physical decay. His early novels depict a shabby Depression-stricken Europe sliding toward fascism and war, while many of his subsequent novels are set in remote locales undergoing wars, revolutions, or other political upheavals.

Despite the downbeat tone of much of his subject matter, Greene was in fact one of the most widely read British novelists of the 20th century. Throughout his career, Greene was fascinated by film, and he often emulated cinematic techniques in his writing. No other British writer of this period was as aware as Greene of the power and influence of cinema.

Greene published several collections of short stories, among them Nineteen Stories ; revised as Twenty-One Stories, His Collected Essays appeared in A Sort of Life is a memoir to , to which Ways of Escape is a sequel.

The unfinished manuscript The Empty Chair, a murder mystery that Greene began writing in , was discovered in ; it was serialized the following year. George Orwell "Nineteen Eighty-Four". Main English novelist, essayist, and critic famous for his novels Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-four , the latter a profound anti-Utopian novel that examines the dangers of totalitarian rule.

In time his nom de plume became so closely attached to him that few people but relatives knew his real name was Blair. He was born in Bengal, into the class of sahibs. His father was a minor British official in the Indian civil service; his mother, of French extraction, was the daughter of an unsuccessful teak merchant in Burma. Orwell was thus brought up in an atmosphere of impoverished snobbery. After returning with his parents to England, he was sent in to a preparatory boarding school on the Sussex coast, where he was distinguished among the other boys by his poverty and his intellectual brilliance.

He grew up a morose, withdrawn, eccentric boy, and he was later to tell of the miseries of those years in his posthumously published autobiographical essay, Such, Such Were the Joys He stayed from to Aldous Huxley was one of his masters, and it was at Eton that he published his first writing in college periodicals. Instead of accepting a scholarship to a university, Orwell decided to follow family tradition and, in , went to Burma as assistant district superintendent in the Indian Imperial Police.

He served in a number of country stations and at first appeared to be a model imperial servant. Yet from boyhood he had wanted to become a writer, and when he realized how much against their will the Burmese were ruled by the British, he felt increasingly ashamed of his role as a colonial police officer. In Orwell, on leave to England, decided not to return to Burma, and on Jan.

Already in the autumn of he had started on a course of action that was to shape his character as a writer. Having felt guilty that the barriers of race and caste had prevented his mingling with the Burmese, he thought he could expiate some of his guilt by immersing himself in the life of the poor and outcast people of Europe. Donning ragged clothes, he went into the East End of London to live in cheap lodging houses among labourers and beggars; he spent a period in the slums of Paris and worked as a dishwasher in French hotels and restaurants; he tramped the roads of England with professional vagrants and joined the people of the London slums in their annual exodus to work in the Kentish hopfields.

These experiences gave Orwell the material for Down and Out in Paris and London , in which actual incidents are rearranged into something like fiction. The main character of Burmese Days is a minor administrator who seeks to escape from the dreary and narrow-minded chauvinism of his fellow British colonialists in Burma. His sympathies for the Burmese, however, end in an unforeseen personal tragedy. Immediately after returning from Burma he called himself an anarchist and continued to do so for several years; during the s, however, he began to consider himself a socialist, though he was too libertarian in his thinking ever to take the further step—so common in the period—of declaring himself a communist.

It begins by describing his experiences when he went to live among the destitute and unemployed miners of northern England, sharing and observing their lives; it ends in a series of sharp criticisms of existing socialist movements. By the time The Road to Wigan Pier was in print, Orwell was in Spain; he went to report on the Civil War there and stayed to join the Republican militia, serving on the Aragon and Teruel fronts and rising to the rank of second lieutenant.

He was seriously wounded at Teruel, damage to his throat permanently affecting his voice and endowing his speech with a strange, compelling quietness. Later, in May , after having fought in Barcelona against communists who were trying to suppress their political opponents, he was forced to flee Spain in fear of his life. The experience left him with a lifelong dread of communism, first expressed in the vivid account of his Spanish experiences, Homage to Catalonia , which many consider one of his best books.

Returning to England, Orwell showed a paradoxically conservative strain in writing Coming Up for Air , in which he uses the nostalgic recollections of a middle-aged man to examine the decency of a past England and express his fears about a future threatened by war and fascism. He left the BBC in and became literary editor of the Tribune, a left-wing socialist paper associated with the British Labour leader Aneurin Bevan. In this book a group of barnyard animals overthrow and chase off their exploitative human masters and set up an egalitarian society of their own.

It has, however, been overshadowed by his last book, Nineteen Eighty-four , a novel he wrote as a warning after years of brooding on the twin menaces of Nazism and Stalinism. The novel is set in an imaginary future in which the world is dominated by three perpetually warring totalitarian police states.

His longing for truth and decency leads him to secretly rebel against the government, which perpetuates its rule by systematically distorting the truth and continuously rewriting history to suit its own purposes. Smith has a love affair with a like-minded woman, but then they are both arrested by the Thought Police.

The ensuing imprisonment, torture, and reeducation of Smith are intended not merely to break him physically or make him submit but to root out his independent mental existence and his spiritual dignity until he can love only the figure he previously most hated: the apparent leader of the party, Big Brother. Orwell wrote the last pages of Nineteen Eighty-four in a remote house on the Hebridean island of Jura, which he had bought from the proceeds of Animal Farm.

He worked between bouts of hospitalization for tuberculosis, of which he died in a London hospital in January George Woodcock. Elizabeth Bowen. British novelist and short-story writer who employed a finely wrought prose style in fictions frequently detailing uneasy and unfulfilling relationships among the upper-middle class. The Death of the Heart , the title of one of her most highly praised novels, might have served for most of them.

Bowen was born of the Anglo-Irish gentry and spent her early childhood in Dublin, as related in her autobiographical fragment Seven Winters , and at the family house she later inherited at Kildorrery, County Cork. When she was 7, her father suffered a mental illness, and she departed for England with her mother, who died when Elizabeth was An only child, she lived with relatives on the Kentish coast.

With a little money that enabled her to live independently in London and to winter in Italy, Bowen began writing short stories at Her first collection, Encounters, appeared in It was followed in by The Hotel, which contains a typical Bowen heroine—a girl attempting to cope with a life for which she is unprepared. The Last September is an autumnal picture of the Anglo-Irish gentry. Her novel set in wartime London, The Heat of the Day , is among her most significant works.

The war also forms the basis for one of her collections of short stories, The Demon Lover ; U. Her essays appear in Collected Impressions and Afterthought Yet the most characteristic writing of the decade grew out of the determination to supplement the diagnosis of class division and sexual repression with their cure.

It was no accident that the poetry of W. Auden and his Oxford contemporaries C. Day-Lewis, Louis MacNeice , and Stephen Spender became quickly identified as the authentic voice of the new generation, for it matched despair with defiance. These self-styled prophets of a new world envisaged freedom from the bourgeois order being achieved in various ways.

For Day-Lewis and Spender , technology held out particular promise. This, allied to Marxist precepts, would in their view bring an end to poverty and the suffering it caused. For Auden especially, sexual repression was the enemy, and here the writings of Sigmund Freud and D. Lawrence were valuable. Whatever their individual preoccupations, these poets produced in the very play of their poetry, with its mastery of different genres, its rapid shifts of tone and mood, and its strange juxtapositions of the colloquial and esoteric, a blend of seriousness and high spirits irresistible to their peers.

Norris Changes Trains [] and Goodbye to Berlin [], which reflect his experiences of postwar Germany , in part by its readiness for political involvement, and in part by its openness to the writing of the avant-garde of the Continent. The verse dramas coauthored by Auden and Isherwood , of which The Ascent of F6 is the most notable, owed much to Bertolt Brecht; the political parables of Rex Warner, of which The Aerodrome is the most accomplished, owed much to Franz Kafka; and the complex and often obscure poetry of David Gascoyne and Dylan Thomas owed much to the Surrealists.

The writing of the interwar period had great breadth and diversity, from Modernist experimentation to new documentary modes of realism and from art as propaganda particularly in the theatre to conventional fiction, drama, and poetry produced for the popular market. Two trends stand out: first, the impact of film on the writing of the decade, not least on styles of visual realization and dialogue, and, second, the ubiquitous preoccupation with questions of time, on the psychological, historical, and even cosmological levels.

As the world became less stable, writers sought both to reflect this and to seek some more-fundamental grounding than that provided by contemporary circumstances. English-born poet and man of letters who achieved early fame in the s as a hero of the left during the Great Depression. Most of his verse dramas of this period were written in collaboration with Christopher Isherwood.

In Auden settled in the United States, becoming a U. Since the father was a distinguished physician of broad scientific interests and the mother had been a nurse, the atmosphere of the home was more scientific than literary. His education followed the standard pattern for children of the middle and upper classes.

At 8 he was sent away to St. Auden intended to be a mining engineer and was interested primarily in science; he specialized in biology. By he had discovered his vocation as a poet, and two years later his first poem was published in Public School Verse. In he entered the University of Oxford Christ Church , where he established a formidable reputation as poet and sage, having a strong influence on such other literary intellectuals as C.

Upon graduating from Oxford in , Auden, offered a year abroad by his parents, chose Berlin rather than the Paris by which the previous literary generation had been fascinated. He fell in love with the German language and was influenced by its poetry, cabaret songs, and plays, especially those by Bertolt Brecht. He returned to become a schoolmaster in Scotland and England for the next five years. In his Collected Shorter Poems Auden divides his career into four periods.

The first extends from , when he was still an undergraduate, through The Orators of The poems are uneven and often obscure, pulled in contrary directions by the subjective impulse to fantasy, the mythic and unconscious, and the objective impulse to a diagnosis of the ills of society and the psychological and moral defects of the individuals who constitute it.

Though the social and political implications of the poetry attracted most attention, the psychological aspect is primary. The notion of poetry as a kind of therapy, performing a function somehow analogous to the psychoanalytical, remains fundamental in Auden. The second period, —38, is that in which Auden was the hero of the left. Continuing the analysis of the evils of capitalist society, he also warned of the rise of totalitarianism.

Auden also wrote commentaries for documentary films, including a classic of that genre, Night Mail ; numerous essays and book reviews; and reportage, most notably on a trip to Iceland with MacNeice, described in Letters from Iceland , and a trip to China with Isherwood that was the basis of Journey to a War Auden visited Spain briefly in , his poem Spain being the only immediate result; but the visit, according to his later recollections, marked the beginning both of his disillusion with the left and of his return to Christianity.

In he married Erika Mann, the daughter of the German novelist Thomas Mann, in order to provide her with a British passport. When he and Isherwood went to China, they crossed the United States both ways, and on the return journey they both decided to settle there.

In January , both did so. In the third period, —46, Auden became an American citizen and underwent decisive changes in his religious and intellectual perspective. Auden wrote no long poems after that. The fourth period began in , when Auden established the pattern of leaving New York City each year to spend the months from April to October in Europe. From to his summer residence was the Italian island of Ischia; in the latter year he bought a farmhouse in Kirchstetten, Austria, where he then spent his summers.

In The Shield of Achilles , Homage to Clio , About the House , and City Without Walls are sequences of poems arranged according to an external pattern canonical hours, types of landscape, rooms of a house. With Chester Kallman, an American poet and close friend who lived with him for more than 20 years, he rehabilitated the art of the opera libretto. They also edited An Elizabethan Song Book He spent much time on editing and translating, notably The Collected Poems of St.

John Perse Of the numerous honours conferred on Auden in this last period, the Bollingen Prize , the National Book Award , and the professorship of poetry at Oxford —61 may be mentioned. In the early s W. Auden was acclaimed prematurely by some as the foremost poet then writing in English, on the disputable ground that his poetry was more relevant to contemporary social and political realities than that of T.

Eliot and William Butler Yeats, who previously had shared the summit. Auden was, as a poet, far more copious and varied than Eliot and far more uneven. He tried to interpret the times, to diagnose the ills of society and deal with intellectual and moral problems of public concern. But the need to express the inner world of fantasy and dream was equally apparent, and, hence, the poetry is sometimes bewildering.

If the poems, taken individually, are often obscure—especially the earlier ones—they create, when taken together, a meaningful poetic cosmos with symbolic landscapes and mythical characters and situations. In his later years Auden ordered the world of his poetry and made it easier of access; he collected his poems, revised them, and presented them chronologically in two volumes: Collected Shorter Poems —57 and Collected Longer Poems Monroe K.

Spears Ed. The son of a clergyman, Day-Lewis was educated at the University of Oxford and taught school until His Transitional Poem had already attracted attention, and in the s he was closely associated with W. Auden whose style influenced his own and other poets who sought a left-wing political solution to the ills of the day. Typical of his views at that time is the verse sequence The Magnetic Mountain and the critical study A Hope for Poetry He was professor of poetry at Oxford from to The Buried Day , his autobiography, discusses his acceptance and later rejection of communism.

Collected Poems appeared in The Complete Poems of C. Day-Lewis was published in At his death he was poet laureate, having succeeded John Masefield in Under the pseudonym of Nicholas Blake he also wrote detective novels, including Minute for Murder and Whisper in the Gloom Louis MacNeice born Sept. British poet and playwright, a member, with W. Auden, C.

In he began to write and produce radio plays for the British Broadcasting Corporation. Foremost among his fine radio verse plays was the dramatic fantasy The Dark Tower , with music by Benjamin Britten. An intellectual honesty, Celtic exuberance, and sardonic humour characterized his poetry, which combined a charming natural lyricism with the mundane patterns of colloquial speech.

His most characteristic mood was that of the slightly detached, wryly observant, ironic and witty commentator. Auden, and The Poetry of W. Yeats He was also a skilled translator, particularly of Horace and Aeschylus Agamemnon, A nephew of the Liberal journalist and biographer J. While an undergraduate he met the poets W. Auden and C.

Day-Lewis, and during —33 he spent many months in Germany with the writer Christopher Isherwood. Above all, his poems expressed a self-critical, compassionate personality. In the following decades Spender, in some ways a more personal poet than his early associates, became increasingly more autobiographical, turning his gaze from the external topical situation to the subjective experience.

From the s Spender was better known for his perceptive criticism and his editorial association with the influential reviews Horizon —41 and Encounter —67 than he was as a poet. After the war he made several visits to the United States, teaching and lecturing at universities, and in he became the first non-American to serve as poetry consultant to the Library of Congress now poet laureate consultant in poetry , a position he held for one year.

In he was appointed professor of English at University College, London; he became professor emeritus in Leavitt ultimately revised his work, but not before a vitriolic airing of the controversy in the pages of the leading journals in London and New York. Christopher Isherwood. Anglo-American novelist and playwright best known for his novels about Berlin in the early s. After working as a secretary and a private tutor, Isherwood gained a measure of coterie recognition with his first two novels, All the Conspirators and The Memorial During the s he collaborated with his friend W.

Auden on three verse dramas, including The Ascent of F6 But it had been in that he found the theme that was to make him widely known.

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