Modern English Classical Poetry
The idea of temporal change is important in literary history. We have a sense that one work leads to another, that one artist influences another, that we can discern stages in development and ever-changing pattern of artistic progression. While the operation of the classical and romantic strains have been continuous in English Poetry, and both the strains have at times operated simultaneously in the same author, the same text, these have undergone subtle changes from age to age, era to era, author to author. The book perceives Classicism as a temper or a courageous acceptance of life, not as an alternative to romanticism, but as a concord of equilibrium and health of art, as a goal toward which all good literature strives, a perennial quest for harmony and balance ? the trinity of classicism, romanticism and realism coalescing in one. The author examines the work of four twentieth-century poets whose poetry embraces a great tradition which makes them the best creative minds and also conscious of a metaphysical order and a cultural unity of the west. They follow the perennial philosophy and feel and experience deeply the evils and anxieties of the age and each transmitted his illumination in a bid to see the part in the light of the whole and to see the moment in the light of the past, which is the grasping of totality. Their all struggles and sorrows, all doubts and weaknesses are only the preparation for the bursting forth of a new, vigorous humanity, in which will and idea, instincts and feelings, find at last their full, strong accord, an accord which sets down the eternal norms of human existence in a courageously-won new classicism. By his synthesizing power, his compact, deliberate and discursive argumentation, his security in evaluation, the author imposes upon his work the unity of mind and matter, the wholeness and transparency that belongs to art. As it is, it perhaps remains the most fully researched work on modern poetry to date and for that reason merits essential reading.
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