A dazzling short assessment of the life and work of the poet and winner of the 1995 Nobel Prize for literature, by one of the finest literary critics now writing.
In awarding the Nobel Prize for Literature to Seamus Heaney in 1995, the committee recognized a lifetime of beautiful and profound writing, beloved by readers around the world.
Among Heaney’s many published collections are Death of a Naturalist, North, Field Work, Rattle Bag, Station Island and, most recently, the bestselling Spirit Level (May 1996).
Yet despite his popularity, Heaney’s poetry can be difficult and intractable, not least because it is linked to two rich literary traditions, the English and the Irish.
The time is ripe for a clear, explicatory work that relates the poet to his work. Helen Vendler’s beautifully written book will do precisely this.
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"Seamus Heaney" gives us an unsurpassed unfolding of its eponym's art and, also, a plain, clear accounting of Helen Vendler's central convictions. From "Death of a Naturalist" to 1997's "The Spirit Level", she reveals a Heaney whose essential means are those of lyric poetry as she herself defines them...Throughout "Seamus Heaney", Vendler's method is determinedly constructivist, patient, and unswerving...Heaney's gentle agon of the saint who dared not move for fear of disturbing nesting blackbirds in his hand is glossed by an equally gentle, equally perdurable agon of close reading. Vendler poses the right questions and, in answer, feels the poem's exact effects.--Donald Revell"Colorado Review" (09/01/1999)From the Back Cover:
A dazzling assessment of the life and work of the poet and winner of the 1995 Nobel Prize for literature, by one of the finest literary critics now writing. Helen Vendler links the poet to his work and his poetry to two rich literary traditions, the English and the Irish. Seamus Heaney has grappled to find symbols adequate to the predicament of his Ulster background and create an ethical poetry that recognizes authentic human intensity wherever it occurs. Collections such as ' Death of a Salesman, Station Island' and most recently, the best-selling 'Spirit Level' document his lyrical mastery and moral rigour. This powerfully written critical biography is the first to illuminate both the art and the life of Heaney, the world’s most celebrated poet.
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Book Description Harvard University Press, 1998. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 2558564