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W. H. Auden - Author

About the Author

W.H. Auden was born in 1907 and went to Oxford University, where he became Professor of Poetry from 1956 to 1960. After the publication of his Poems in 1930, he became the acknowledged leader of the 'thirties poets'. His poetic output was prolific, and he also wrote verse plays in collaboration with Christopher Isherwood, with whom he visited china. In 1946 he became a U.S. citizen. He died in 1973.

Featured books by W. H. Auden

Other books by W. H. Auden

The Complete Works of W.H. Auden Plays and Other Dramatic Writings, 1928-1938

The Complete Works of W.H. Auden Plays and Other Dramatic Writings, 1928-1938

Author: W. H. Auden, Christopher Isherwood Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 08/11/2019

This volume contains Auden and Christopher Isherwood's dramatic extravaganzas The Dog Beneath the Skin, the Ascent of F 6, and On the Frontier. It also includes the two versions of Paid on Both Sides--which are so different as to constitute two works--and Auden's satiric revue The Dance of Death. Two plays appear in print for the first time, Auden and Isherwood's The Enemies of a Bishop and Auden's The Chase. Also included are Auden's prose and verse written for doucmentary films, a cabaret sketch, and an unpublished radio script. Many of the texts include poems by the young Auden that have never been published before. The extensive historical and textual notes trace the complex history of the production and revision of these plays, including full texts and rewritten scenes. During the years when these works were created, Auden moved from a poetry of isolation to more expansive and public writing. After he left Oxford at age twenty-one, during the summer of 1928, he wrote the tragicomic charade Paid on Both Sides. During the next ten years, until he left England for America, he created the increasingly ambitious works for stage, film, and broadcast that appear in this volume. The most important of these plays were written in collaboration with Isherwood. As the world political situation worsened, Isherwood and Auden's style combined the energy of popular entertainment with the urgency of sacramental ritual. Edard Mendelson is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University and the author of Early Auden (Viking). He is the editor of two volumes of Aduen's poetry, Collected Poems (Random House) and The English Auden (Random House). Originally published in 1988. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

The Complete Works of W.H. Auden Plays and Other Dramatic Writings, 1928-1938

The Complete Works of W.H. Auden Plays and Other Dramatic Writings, 1928-1938

Author: W. H. Auden, Christopher Isherwood Format: Hardback Release Date: 08/11/2019

This volume contains Auden and Christopher Isherwood's dramatic extravaganzas The Dog Beneath the Skin, the Ascent of F 6, and On the Frontier. It also includes the two versions of Paid on Both Sides--which are so different as to constitute two works--and Auden's satiric revue The Dance of Death. Two plays appear in print for the first time, Auden and Isherwood's The Enemies of a Bishop and Auden's The Chase. Also included are Auden's prose and verse written for doucmentary films, a cabaret sketch, and an unpublished radio script. Many of the texts include poems by the young Auden that have never been published before. The extensive historical and textual notes trace the complex history of the production and revision of these plays, including full texts and rewritten scenes. During the years when these works were created, Auden moved from a poetry of isolation to more expansive and public writing. After he left Oxford at age twenty-one, during the summer of 1928, he wrote the tragicomic charade Paid on Both Sides. During the next ten years, until he left England for America, he created the increasingly ambitious works for stage, film, and broadcast that appear in this volume. The most important of these plays were written in collaboration with Isherwood. As the world political situation worsened, Isherwood and Auden's style combined the energy of popular entertainment with the urgency of sacramental ritual. Edard Mendelson is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University and the author of Early Auden (Viking). He is the editor of two volumes of Aduen's poetry, Collected Poems (Random House) and The English Auden (Random House). Originally published in 1988. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Lectures on Shakespeare

Lectures on Shakespeare

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 05/11/2019

From one of the great modern writers, the acclaimed lectures in which he draws on a lifetime of experience to take the measure of Shakespeare's plays and sonnets W. H. Auden, poet and critic, will conduct a course on Shakespeare at the New School for Social Research beginning Wednesday. Mr. Auden . . . proposes to read all Shakespeare's plays in chronological order. So the New York Times reported on September 27, 1946, giving notice of a rare opportunity to hear one of the century's great poets discuss at length one of the greatest writers of all time. Reconstructed by Arthur Kirsch, these lectures offer remarkable insights into Shakespeare's plays and sonnets while also adding immeasurably to our understanding of Auden.

Another Time

Another Time

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Hardback Release Date: 05/09/2019

Another Time was the first volume that Auden published after his departure to America with Christopher Isherwood in January 1939. It was dedicated to Chester Kallman. The poems, some of which date from the early thirties, are about people, places and the intellectual climate of the times, and they show greater variety of tone and technique than in any previous book of Auden's. Some of his most famous and often quoted (or misquoted) lines appear in their original form, including the text of two poems in particular - 'Spain 1937' and 'September 1,1939' - that he later altered or repudiated. This beautifully designed edition forms part of a series of ten titles celebrating Faber's publishing over the decades.

Letters from Iceland

Letters from Iceland

Author: W. H. Auden, Louis MacNeice Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/11/2018

In the summer of 1936, W. H. Auden and Louis MacNeice visited Iceland on commission to write a travel book, but found themselves capturing concerns on a scale that were far more international. 'Though writing in a holiday spirit,' commented Auden, 'its authors were all the time conscious of a threatening horizon to their picnic - world-wide unemployment, Hitler growing everyday more powerful and a world-war more inevitable.' The result is the remarkable Letters from Iceland, a collaboration in poetry and prose, reportage and correspondence, published in 1937 with the Spanish Civil War newly in progress, beneath the shadow of looming world war.

The Orators

The Orators

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 03/09/2015

When The Orators was originally published in 1932 it was described by Poetry Review as 'something as important as the appearance of Mr Eliot's poems fifteen years ago'. A long poem written in both prose and verse, it was a powerful addition to the canon of modernist poetry.

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume VI Prose: 1969-1973

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume VI Prose: 1969-1973

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/06/2015

This sixth and final volume of W. H. Auden's prose displays a great writer's mind in its full maturity of wisdom, learning, and emotional and moral intelligence. It contains the full text of the only book that he regarded as an autobiography, A Certain World, in which he portrayed himself by selecting and commenting on writings by others that most affected him throughout his life. It also features late essays and reviews that in many cases present lightly disguised autobiographies, among them the most detailed account of his sexuality, in Papa Was a Wise Old Sly-Boots. The appendixes gather lectures and public talks that are otherwise unpublished or unavailable. Edward Mendelson's comprehensive notes provide biographical and historical explanations of obscure references. The text includes corrections and revisions that Auden marked in personal copies of his work and that are published here for the first time.

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume V Prose: 1963-1968

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume V Prose: 1963-1968

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Hardback Release Date: 02/06/2015

This fifth volume of W. H. Auden's prose displays a great writer's mind in its full maturity of wisdom, learning, and emotional and moral intelligence. It contains his most personally revealing essays, the ones in which he wrote for the first time about the full history of his family life, his sexuality, and the development of his moral and religious beliefs. Among these works are the lightly disguised autobiographies that appear in long essays on the Protestant mystics and on Shakespeare's sonnets. The book also features the full text of his T. S. Eliot Memorial Lectures, Secondary Worlds, and many unpublished or unavailable lectures and speeches. Edward Mendelson's introduction and comprehensive notes provide biographical and historical explanations of obscure references. The text includes corrections and revisions that Auden marked in personal copies of his work and that are published here for the first time.

For the Time Being A Christmas Oratorio

For the Time Being A Christmas Oratorio

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Hardback Release Date: 21/05/2013

For the Time Being is a pivotal book in the career of one of the greatest poets of the twentieth century. W. H. Auden had recently moved to America, fallen in love with a young man to whom he considered himself married, rethought his entire poetic and intellectual equipment, and reclaimed the Christian faith of his childhood. Then, in short order, his relationship fell apart and his mother, to whom he was very close, died. In the midst of this period of personal crisis and intellectual remaking, he decided to write a poem about Christmas and to have it set to music by his friend Benjamin Britten. Applying for a Guggenheim grant, Auden explained that he understood the difficulty of writing something vivid and distinctive about that most cliched of subjects, but welcomed the challenge. In the end, the poem proved too long and complex to be set by Britten, but in it we have a remarkably ambitious and poetically rich attempt to see Christmas in double focus: as a moment in the history of the Roman Empire and of Judaism, and as an ever-new and always contemporary event for the believer. For the Time Being is Auden's only explicitly religious long poem, a technical tour de force, and a revelatory window into the poet's personal and intellectual development. This edition provides the most accurate text of the poem, a detailed introduction by Alan Jacobs that explains its themes and sets the poem in its proper contexts, and thorough annotations of its references and allusions.

The Dyer's Hand

The Dyer's Hand

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/02/2013

In the early 1950s Auden began planning a prose volume that would bring together some of his published essays, lectures, and reviews, together with newly-written notes and aphorisms. In 1956 he was elected Professor of Poetry at Oxford, and The Dyer's Hand appeared in 1962, combining earlier material with revised versions of many of his Oxford lectures: The result is one of Auden's most original works, his only book of prose devised as a single cohesive work about disparate subjects, and containing - as he remarked at the time - 'all the autobiography I am willing to make public'. 'Speaking for myself, the questions which interest me most when reading a poem are two. The first is technical: Here is a verbal contraption. How does it work? The second is, in the broadest sense, moral: What kind of a guy inhabits this poem? What is his notion of the good life or the good place? His notion of the Evil One? What does he conceal from the reader? What does he conceal even from himself? - W. H. Auden (inaugural lecture as Professor of Poetry at Oxford, June 1956)

Poems (1930)

Poems (1930)

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/02/2013

Auden's electrifying, enigmatic and extraordinarily influential debut collection was published by Faber in 1930, and simply entitled Poems. For the second edition (1933) he omitted seven items and added new poems in their place. Available again for the first time since 1950, this reissue follows the text of the second edition.

Collected Longer Poems

Collected Longer Poems

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 21/06/2012

First published in 1968, this companion volume to the Collected Shorter Poems was compiled by W.H. Auden to bring together six of his longer poetic works, originally published between 1930 and 1947. Auden was one of the modern masters of the extended poem, and these works are among his most enduring achievements, both for their technical virtuosity and for the emotional and intellectual precision with which they dissected the malaise and turmoil of their age.Collected Longer Poems includes Paid on Both Sides, Letter to Lord Byron, For the Time Being, The Sea and the Mirror, and The Age of Anxiety.

The Age of Anxiety A Baroque Eclogue

The Age of Anxiety A Baroque Eclogue

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Hardback Release Date: 27/02/2011

When it was first published in 1947, The Age of Anxiety--W. H. Auden's last, longest, and most ambitious book-length poem--immediately struck a powerful chord, capturing the imagination of the cultural moment that it diagnosed and named. Beginning as a conversation among four strangers in a barroom on New York's Third Avenue, Auden's analysis of Western culture during the Second World War won the Pulitzer Prize and inspired a symphony by Leonard Bernstein as well as a ballet by Jerome Robbins. Yet reviews of the poem were sharply divided, and today, despite its continuing fame, it is unjustly neglected by readers. This volume--the first annotated, critical edition of the poem--introduces this important work to a new generation of readers by putting it in historical and biographical context and elucidating its difficulties. Alan Jacobs's introduction and thorough annotations help today's readers understand and appreciate the full richness of a poem that contains some of Auden's most powerful and beautiful verse, and that still deserves a central place in the canon of twentieth-century poetry.

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume IV Prose: 1956-1962

The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume IV Prose: 1956-1962

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Hardback Release Date: 24/10/2010

This fourth volume of W. H. Auden's prose provides a unique picture of this legendary writer's mind and art when he was at the height of his powers, from 1956 through 1962, including the years when he was Professor of Poetry at Oxford. The volume includes his best-known and most important prose collection, The Dyer's Hand , as well as scores of essays, reviews, and lectures on subjects ranging from J. R. R. Tolkien and Martin Luther to psychedelic drugs, cooking, and Homer. Much of the material has never been collected in book form, and some selections, such as the witty orations Auden wrote for ceremonies at Oxford University, are almost entirely unknown. Edward Mendelson's introduction and comprehensive notes provide biographical and historical explanations of all obscure references. The text includes extensive corrections and revisions that Auden marked in personal copies of his work and which are printed here for the first time.

Nineteenth-Century Minor Poets

Nineteenth-Century Minor Poets

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 18/02/2010

Who is a major, who is a minor poet? Inevitably, in his introduction, W. H. Auden offers a stimulating rationale for distinguishing between the two. To paraphrase him, one cannot say that a major poet always writes better poems than a minor poet. Nor is it a matter of pleasure the poet gives an individual reader - Auden himself confesses to not liking Shelley but being 'delighted by every line of William Barnes', but not doubting for a moment the former is a major poet and the latter a minor one. One does not always enjoy what one most admires. Yet everyone is to some extent familiar with the work of the major nineteenth century poets and few have had the chance to read the patriotic poems of Thomas Campbell, several of which rank among the finest such poems in English literature, the songs of Tom Moore or his political and social satires, the humorous verse of Thomas Hood, the superb lyrics of Thomas Lovell Beddoes, the odes of Coventry Patmore, the satirical poems of Samuel Butler. These poets and many more are discerningly represented in this anthology which puts into the limelight every genuine minor poet (they must have written at least one good poem) born between 1770 and 1870.

The Selected Writings of Sydney Smith

The Selected Writings of Sydney Smith

Author: W. H. Auden Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/07/2009

'He is a very clever fellow, but he will never be a bishop.' George III 'A more profligate parson I never met.' George IV 'I sat next to Sydney Smith, who was delightful ... I don't remember a more agreeable party.' Benjamin Disraeli 'I wish you would tell Mr Sydney Smith that of all the men I ever heard of and never saw, I have the greatest curiosity to see ... and to know him.' Charles Dickens How one agrees with Dickens. Without doubt, Sydney Smith was the most famous wit of his generation. But there was more to him than that, he was an outstanding representative of the English liberal tradition. Starting as an impoverished village curate he went to Edinburgh as a tutor, and co-founded the Edinburgh Review, the first major nineteenth-century periodical. Happily married, he moved in 1803 to London, where he was introduced into the Holland House circle - of which he quickly became an admired and popular member - but at the age of thirty-eight a Tory government banished him to a village parsonage. There he became 'one of the best country vicars of whom there is a record', and after his two chief causes - the Catholic Emancipation Act of 1829 and the Reform Bill of 1832 - triumphed, he was rewarded by a canonry of St. Paul's. This generous selection of his writings gives the full flavour of his mind and intellectual personality. In a characteristically stimulating introduction in which he discusses Sydney Smith both as an individual and as a shining exemplar of the liberal mind, W. H. Auden places him with Jonathan Swift and Bernard Shaw among the few polemic authors 'who must be ranked very high by any literary standard.' As Macaulay said he was 'The Smith of Smiths'.

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