Selected Poems of Stephen Spender

Stephen Spender
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ISBN 9780571244799 Format Paperback
Published 07/05/2009 Length 144 pages

About Book

Stephen Spender, the son of a journalist, was born in London in 1909. He was educated at University College, Oxford, where he met, among others, W. H. Auden, Christopher Isherwood and Louis MacNeice, with whom he was to develop a poetics of engagement, writing powerfully of the confusion and alarm of 1930s Europe. He visited Spain during the Civil War, in 1937, where he assisted the Republican cause with propaganda activity. His post-war memoir World within World was recognised as one of the most illuminating literary autobiographies to have come out of the 1930s and 1940s, distilling a distinctively personal, humanistic socialism. His poetry has been praised for its exploratory candour, its personal approach to the stresses of modernity, and its exact portraiture of social and political upheaval. Grey Gowrie's new selection offers a timely and incisive revaluation of Spender's substantial poetic corpus.
  • About Stephen Spender

    Stephen Spender was born in 1909 and was educated at University College, Oxford, where his friends included W. H. Auden, C. Day Lewis, Louis MacNeice, Christopher Isherwood and Edward Upward. His first book, Poems, was published by T. S. Eliot at Faber & Faber in 1933. He went to Spain during the Civil War and worked as a Republican propagandist. With Cyril Connolly he founded Horizon in London in 1939, and co-edited it until he joined the National Fire Service in 1942. He founded Encounter with Irving Kristol in 1953 and was co-editor of the magazine until 1965. He spent much time in the USA where he was Visiting Professor at several universities. He was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 1971, and was knighted in 1983. His oeuvre includes numerous volumes of poems concluding with Dolphins in 1994, plays, translations, novels, short stories, essays on art and literature, criticism, and journals. He died in London in 1995.

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