Skeptical Music: Essays on Modern Poetry

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9780226075617: Skeptical Music: Essays on Modern Poetry

Skeptical Music collects the essays on poetry that have made David Bromwich one of the most widely admired critics now writing. Both readers familiar with modern poetry and newcomers to poets like Marianne Moore and Hart Crane will relish this collection for its elegance and power of discernment. Each essay stakes a definitive claim for the modernist style and its intent to capture an audience beyond the present moment.

The two general essays that frame Skeptical Music make Bromwich's aesthetic commitments clear. In "An Art without Importance," published here for the first time, Bromwich underscores the trust between author and reader that gives language its subtlety and depth, and makes the written word adequate to the reality that poetry captures. For Bromwich, understanding the work of a poet is like getting to know a person; it is a kind of reading that involves a mutual attraction of temperaments. The controversial final essay, "How Moral Is Taste?," explores the points at which aesthetic and moral considerations uneasily converge. In this timely essay, Bromwich argues that the wish for excitement that poetry draws upon is at once primitive and irreducible.

Skeptical Music most notably offers incomparable readings of individual poets. An essay on the complex relationship between Hart Crane and T. S. Eliot shows how the delicate shifts of tone and shading in their work register both affinity and resistance. A revealing look at W. H. Auden traces the process by which the voice of a generation changed from prophet to domestic ironist. Whether discussing heroism in the poetry of Wallace Stevens, considering self-reflection in the poems of Elizabeth Bishop, or exploring the battle between the self and its images in the work of John Ashbery, Skeptical Music will make readers think again about what poetry is, and even more important, why it still matters.

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Skeptical Music collects the essays on poetry that have made David Bromwich one of the most widely admired critics now writing. Both readers familiar with modern poetry and newcomers to poets like Marianne Moore and James Merrill will relish this collection for its elegance and power of discernment. Each essay stakes a particular claim for the modernist style and its intent to capture an audience beyond the present moment.

An essay on the complex relationship between Hart Crane and T. S. Eliot shows how the delicate shifts of tone and shading in their work register both affinity and resistance. A revealing look at W. H. Auden traces the process by which the voice of a generation changed from prophet to domestic ironist. And a close reading of Geoffrey Hill sheds new light on the "conscience of words" in writing. Whether discussing heroism in the poetry of Wallace Stevens, considering self-reflection in the poems of Elizabeth Bishop, exploring the battle between the self and its images in the work of John Ashbery, or even tracing the significance of valor to a prose stylist such as Ernest Hemingway, Skeptical Music will make readers think again about what poetry is, and even more important, why it still matters.

About the Author:

David Bromwich is the Housum Professor of English at Yale University. He is the author of Disowned by Memory: Wordsworth's Poetry of the 1790s, published by the University of Chicago Press, and A Choice of Inheritance: Self and Community from Edmund Burke to Robert Frost.

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. The poems that are written about, in the essays found in this book, all stake a definitive claim for the modernist style and its intent to capture an audience beyond the present moment. Bromwich s essays offer readings of individual poets, as well as comparisons between poets and their style. Bromwich looks at the link between author and reader that gives language its subtlety and depth and makes the written word adequate to the reality that poetry captures. He also explores the moral and aesthetic considerations of poems, and argues that the excitement that poems draw on is at once primitive and irriducible. There is a look at the relationship between T.S. Eliot and Hart Crane and their work. Another essay takes a revealing look at W.H. Auden and traces the process by which the voice of a generation changed from prophet to domestic ironist. The essays attempt to make the reader think about what poetry is, and why it is still important. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780226075617

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Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The poems that are written about, in the essays found in this book, all stake a definitive claim for the modernist style and its intent to capture an audience beyond the present moment. Bromwich s essays offer readings of individual poets, as well as comparisons between poets and their style. Bromwich looks at the link between author and reader that gives language its subtlety and depth and makes the written word adequate to the reality that poetry captures. He also explores the moral and aesthetic considerations of poems, and argues that the excitement that poems draw on is at once primitive and irriducible. There is a look at the relationship between T.S. Eliot and Hart Crane and their work. Another essay takes a revealing look at W.H. Auden and traces the process by which the voice of a generation changed from prophet to domestic ironist. The essays attempt to make the reader think about what poetry is, and why it is still important. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780226075617

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