By Richard R. Bozorth
The 1st full-length attention of Auden as a gay poet, this quantity indicates that Auden's occupation was once tied to a means of homosexual self-interrogation remarkable in smooth poetry and argues that he was once pushed by means of a strong craving to understand the mental, political, and moral implications of same-sex wish. Auden's theories approximately poetry within the Nineteen Thirties and after mirrored an extreme trouble with the right way to write publicly as a gay poet. That fight used to be made appear in his love poetry, which Bozorth argues constitutes a type of "erotic autobiography" exploring the designated demanding situations of gay love.Bozorth's process is manifold, reading the poet's engagements with avant-garde poetics, homosexual culture, psychoanalysis, leftist politics, and theology. This ebook proposes that from his early fascination with undercover agent and trickster figures to his later theories of poetry as an I-Thou relation, Auden seen poetry as a fictional yet primal erotic stumble upon with the reader.
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Extra resources for Auden's Games of Knowledge
This last phrase has its own bitter undertones too, suggesting that he has been merely fantasizing a lover “all ready” for him—who evidently was “all ready” to fend him off. Multiple readings inflect the closing lines as well. e. they would shoot each other). But “they” could also be the allies who have abandoned him, making this last gunfight merely his projection of self-destruction onto the “companion” he never had. If “Control of the passes” is a commentary on Auden’s failed desire for McElwee and/or Carritt, with Auden cast as “the trained spy,” he is unable to locate the source of failure precisely, for he leaves unresolved whether that failure proceeds from inhibition or rejection, and he seems uncertain whether rejection is avoidable.
Through imitation of Don Juan, he attacks the tendency toward ideological cant in “serious” political art, indulging privacy, effeminacy, and eccentricity (both poetic and sexual) as alternatives to conformist politics of masculinity on the right and the left. By concluding with an analysis of Auden’s 1935 comments on what he calls “parable,” chapter 4 serves as a linchpin for this book’s overall argument. For in parable, Auden first theorizes poetry as a noncoercive way of making the poet’s experience useful for the reader.
In writing it I had the sense of sending home to friends and colleagues dispatches from a front line in our joint war against censorship. (x-xi) It is not news, of course, that the Auden group had a sense of common purpose. Spender’s 1951 World Within World fleshed out the coterie’s origins at Oxford in the 1920s, but the legend was well underway in the 1930s. After Michael Roberts and John Lehmann’s formative 1932 anthology New Signatures, critics began to treat these writers as a movement, and the Auden group reinforced this sense with dedications to each other and allusions to each other’s work.