Collected Critical Writings

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Oxford University Press, 2009 - Literary Criticism - 815 pages
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The Collected Critical Writings of Geoffrey Hill gathers more than forty years of Hill's published criticism, in a revised final form, and also adds much new work. It will serve as the canonical volume of criticism by Hill, the pre-eminent poet-critic whom A. N. Wilson has called 'probably the best writer alive, in verse or in prose'. In his criticism Hill ranges widely, investigating both poets (including Jonson, Dryden, Hopkins, Whitman, Eliot, and Yeats) and prose writers (such as Tyndale, Clarendon, Hobbes, Burton, Emerson, and F. H. Bradley). He is also steeped in the historical context - political, poetic, and religious - of the writers he studies. Most importantly, he brings texts and contexts into new and telling relations, neither reducing texts to the circumstances of their utterance nor imagining that they can float free of them. A number of the essays have already established themselves as essential reading on particular subjects, such as his analysis of Vaughan's 'The Night', his discussion Gurney's poetry, and his critical account of The Oxford English Dictionary. Others confront the problems of language and the nature of value directly, as in 'Our Word is Our Bond', 'Language, Suffering, and Value', and 'Poetry and Value'. In all his criticism, Hill reveals literature to be an essential arena of civic intelligence.

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Review: Collected Critical Writings

User Review  - Michael Murray - Goodreads

Very,very informative, useful and endlessly interesting. I am beginning to get the impression, especially with the later work that he chews and chews his material to ever smaller quantities; and that ... Read full review

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About the author (2009)


Born in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire in 1932, Geoffrey Hill is the author of a dozen books of poetry. From 1988 to 2006 he taught as a University Professor and Professor of Literature and Religion at Boston University. He is also Honorary Fellow of Keble College, Oxford; Honorary Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge; Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature; and Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He currently lives in Cambridge, England.

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