By Richard R. Bozorth
The 1st full-length attention of Auden as a gay poet, this quantity indicates that Auden's occupation used to be tied to a technique of homosexual self-interrogation remarkable in smooth poetry and argues that he used to be 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 excessive challenge with the 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 specific demanding situations of gay love.Bozorth's process is manifold, studying the poet's engagements with avant-garde poetics, homosexual tradition, 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 come upon with the reader.
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Extra info for Auden's Games of Knowledge
In the work of poets as varied as Byron, Whitman, Dickinson, Hopkins, H. 2 If he never achieved celebrity on their scale, neither did he pay their price for testing England’s tolerance for open secrets. But at the start of his career in the late 1920s, Auden developed and put into practice a poetic of self-conscious coding to negotiate the closet as a structure both psychic and social. ”3 Such an argument does risk reductiveness: as D. A. 4 The distinctive topoi and terrain of these poems—where mysterious forays are made on guarded frontiers, and loyalty is always suspect—have been read quite plausibly in terms of modernist alienation, radical politics, psychic schism, and adolescent angst.
Again, reasons of space come into play, but this is also a matter of an argument that Auden’s significance as a homosexual poet lies in his deployment of the individual poem, particularly the lyric, as a site of epistemological and erotic encounter. 17 Finally, this book concentrates on Auden’s earlier work because it was in the 1920s and ’30s that he was most acutely preoccupied with making theoretical sense of homosexuality. I have tried whenever possible to draw attention to other poems that exemplify or complicate matters at hand, but readers will doubtless think of poems I do not address.
6 Spender also showed it to his publisher, Geoffrey Faber, who “pointed out that there could be no question of publishing a novel which . . was pornographic according to the law at that time” (Temple x). Recent years, Spender notes, had seen the infamous cases of Ulysses and The Well of Loneliness, the censorship of which forms a crucial social context for the self-construction of the Auden group: In the late Twenties young English writers were more concerned with censorship than with politics.