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Ezra Pound: Poet: Volume II: The Epic Years (Hardback)
  • Ezra Pound: Poet: Volume II: The Epic Years (Hardback)
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Ezra Pound: Poet: Volume II: The Epic Years (Hardback)

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£25.00
Hardback 440 Pages / Published: 25/09/2014
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This second volume of A. David Moody's full-scale portrait, covering Ezra Pound's middle years, weaves together into a single highly readable and challenging narrative, in a way that has not been done before, the illuminating story of his life, his achievement as a poet and a composer, and his one-man crusade for economic justice. There is new insight into his complicated personal relationships. There are detailed accounts of the composition of his two operas and of his original contribution to the theory of harmony. A canto by canto and decad by decad elucidation of the form and meaning of the first seventy-one cantos of his epic reveals their hitherto unperceived musical structures and their overall design. The thinking behind his support for Mussolini's economic programme during the Great Depression of the 1930s is brought to light, and shown to be not "fascist" but essentially true to the principles of the American Revolution, and, behind that, to Confucian ideas of responsible government. At the same time it is made clear that he saw only what he wanted to see in Mussolini's Fascism, and later in Hitler's Nazism, and was blind to their darker policies. And it is clear that he went most seriously wrong in deploying, as a weapon in his war on the injustice of the capitalist financial system, the anti-Semitism endemic in Europe and America and at that time turning murderous in Nazi Germany. Pound is revealed as a great poet and a flawed idealist caught up in the turmoil of his darkening time and struggling, sometimes blindly and in error and self-contradiction, to be a force for enlightenment. A third volume will carry on the narrative of his life and works from 1939 to his death in 1972.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199215584
Number of pages: 440
Weight: 930 g
Dimensions: 241 x 168 x 43 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
... makes the reader long for the prompt publication of the final volume of what is already an impressive biographical achievement. * Ruud van den Beuken (Radboud University Nijmegen) The Journal *
Its almost a day-to-day account of the life of this prolific and erudite writer and scholar. As such, it illuminates and validates the poetry. * David Crook, Bookwitty *
Moody writes well and answerably, and has mastered the difficulties of his subject; for all its length his book is never dull or disproportioned. * David Bromwich, The Times Literary Supplement *
The story will have been in expert hands throughout, and it will surely end up being better told than any of the many available versions previously on offer... The great virtue of what Moody is, has been, and obviously will be doing is to make 'the whole and all' as coherent as any biographer-critic could reasonably be expected to do. * Review of English Studies, John Pilling *
A fascinating tour around the landscapes of Pound's mind, and it is a refreshing antidote to the simplistic view of Pound that sometimes prevails. * Shiny New Books, Rob Spence *
A seriously important contribution to making sense of the complexity of Pound ... [a] biography which guides us brilliantly. * Luca Gallesi, Il Giornale *
Splendid * Denis Donoghue, Irish Times *
The second volume of a magnificent biography that will surely take its place among the most important studies of any Modernist writer. * David Mason, Wall Street Journal *
Another impressive installment in what will surely stand as the definitive biography of a flawed titan. * Booklist *
The eagerly awaited second instalment of this life of Pound is wonderfully panoramic, covering his time in France and Italy alongside his growing interests in money and musicality. Moody's close reading of The Cantos is similarly assured and impressive. * Matthew Feldman, Times Higher Education *
Moody - who quotes Leon Edels remark that a biographer is "a novelist, on oath" - reports all this and more with wry, scholarly impartiality. He becomes expertly serious as comedy shades into tragedy in the Thirties, and Pound's admiration for the fascism of Mussolini grows unfunnily naive... Masterly. * Jeremy Noel-Tod, Daily Telegraph *
Moody's biography is the best kind of slow read, its authority and grip increasing as the details accumulate. It is also an exceptional feat of criticism, often shedding light on unexpected facets of Pounds poetry. When the final volume is with us, it will stand as the definitive account of perhaps the most troublous and dramatic life in 20th-century literature. * Matthew Sperling, Literary Review *

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