In The Waste Land he demanded to be read differently from other poets. He alters our way of reading for good, if we read him properly. The poem does not respond to analysis of its meanings--meanings cannot be detached from the texture of the poetry itself.In addition to giving the analytical part of the reader's brain a good workout, as he parses everyone from Spenser to Ashbery to Walcott, Schmidt offers up plenty of idiosyncratic opinion that will alternately raise hackles or set heads nodding in vigorous agreement. This may not be the most objective treatment of poetry to come down the pike, but it is an invaluable--and deeply entertaining--reference. --Margaret Prior --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
When you need information about any poet, you will find it here. I am very happy with my purchase.
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An OK book. Basically a reference book to consult rather than to read straight through.Published 1 month ago by Paul H. Smith
I'll talk about the book itself -- which is fantastic and addictive itself so far -- but first a warning: do not buy the kindle edition! Read morePublished 12 months ago by poetry lover
This is more of a collective biography of a genre than a collection of individual biographies. It's a beautiful book for anyone who loves poetry and the souls behind some of the... Read morePublished 21 months ago by Mikey C.
This book is a whopping 975 pages, and is recommended for the die-hard poetry enthusiast, especially those who are interested in the history of English poetry. Read morePublished on July 28, 2011 by Z Hayes
I can't believe I read the whole thing. You may find yourself saying the same thing too I you should so choose to tackle Schmidt's lengthy analysis on the history of English... Read morePublished on July 6, 2003 by M. Swinney
It is no small irony that Schmidt takes his title from his curmudgeonly Eighteenth Century ancestor, Samuel Johnson. Read morePublished on January 14, 2003 by Daniel Myers
Schmidt's boldness is nearly unmatched among literary critics. For this reason alone, his book, Lives of the Poets, is a stimulating read. Read morePublished on January 8, 2003 by "scottk83"
A great value, this book contains lots of fax 'n' info about the important and not-so-famous poets. Schmidt combines chronology with history and attempts a kind of psychobiography... Read morePublished on July 19, 2002 by Emberek