By Nigel Alderman, C. D. Blanton
This quantity introduces scholars to an important figures, pursuits and developments in post-war British and Irish poetry.
- An ancient review and significant advent to the poetry released in Britain and eire over the past half-century
- Introduces scholars to figures together with Philip Larkin, Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney, and Andrew Motion
- Takes an integrative method, emphasizing the complicated negotiations among the British and Irish poetic traditions, and pulling jointly competing trends and positions
- Written through critics from Britain, eire, and the United States
- Includes feedback for extra examining and a chronology, detailing an important writers, volumes and events
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Additional info for A Concise Companion to Postwar British and Irish Poetry
They are redeemed from heresies And all their frowardness forget; And scales are fallen from their eyes Thanks to the Westminster Gazette. (Eliot 1996: 84–5) Where scriptural references and religious diction mingle with the rhythm of a barracks-room ballad, the odd tonality serves at once to replicate and characterize the moral rationales for the war, that doggerel logic, which Spender’s paper and its partisan likes have tirelessly offered. qxd 09/02/2009 16:46 Page 26 Vincent Sherry mock-sententiousness and pseudo-reasonableness that the later, more polished quatrains will smooth out.
Edna Longley’s Bloodaxe Book of 20th Century Poetry from Britain and Ireland (2000b), for example, concentrates attention on the continuity and development of the lyric, while Simon Armitage and Robert Crawford’s Penguin Book of Poetry from Britain and Ireland since 1945 locates the underlying story of postwar poetry, as of postwar society in general, in the gradual but implacable movement of democratization and the corollary achievement of a “contemporary culture of pluralism” (1998: xxii). For Armitage and Crawford, the postwar is largely defined by the transformation of England from “the widely acknowledged fount and centre of English language culture” to a tributary “anglophone culture within an English-speaking world” (xxiii), a world in which “apparent genealogies become disrupted” (xxvi).
As a step-by-step process, where each phase is scaled in measurable advance from the last (rationality means first of all ratio, scale, measure), history was moving like a grand syllogism, as reasonably as a sequenced and progressive thought, to a conclusion that was always better, a conclusion that involved an ongoing improvement of human circumstance. Empirical reason designed the chief vehicle for this process as it worked in the sphere of material science, in technology. Here is the sensibility that would be discredited so heavily in the experience of war, and of history as war, in the twentieth century, when time arrives at its dystopic end.
A Concise Companion to Postwar British and Irish Poetry by Nigel Alderman, C. D. Blanton