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Robert Browning's Poetry (Norton Critical Editions) Paperback – January 2, 2007

ISBN-13: 978-0393926002 ISBN-10: 0393926001 Edition: 2nd

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Robert Browning's Poetry (Norton Critical Editions) + Flannery O'Connor : Collected Works : Wise Blood / A Good Man Is Hard to Find / The Violent Bear It Away / Everything that Rises Must Converge / Essays & Letters (Library of America) + Till We Have Faces: A Myth Retold
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 704 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 2nd edition (January 2, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393926001
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393926002
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 0.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #435,876 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Robert Browning (1812-1889) was one of the foremost Victorian poets and playwrights.

James F. Loucks is Associate Professor of English at The Ohio State University, Newark. He received his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University. He is the co-author (with Richard D. Altick) of Browning’s Roman Murder Story: A Reading of “The Ring and the Book” and is the author of articles on Victorian and twentieth-century literature.

Andrew M. Stauffer is Associate Professor of English at Boston University. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. He is the author of Anger, Revolution, and Romanticism, and has published many articles on Romantic and Victorian poetry.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Caponsacchi HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 26, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is as good as you'll find for a brief one-volume, in-print collection of some major Browning poems. Browning, as Pound himself made clear, is the forerunner of "modernism," his poetry capable of outdoing Pound's in difficulty because of the labyrinthian syntax in pursuit of meanings which for their originator, at least, were clear. Even "Sordello," the ultimate poem about the ultimately self-conscious troubador, was too much for Ezra, who couldn't get on with his Cantos until distancing himself from its difficulties.

With all due respects to the other reviewer, Browning is a "Christian" poet but no orthodox one. He believes in a dynamic Incarnation repeating itself throughout creation and in every moment of existence. Grace and redemption, however, are relatively foreign if not alien concepts to him--one of the reasons it's quite accurate to think of him as the most "optimistic" poet, if not author, in all English literature. Life is purposeful becoming: there's no need to mourn or forgive the past.

Also, any reader may read, or teacher teach, "My Last Duchess" without guilt. Though certain readers might find it easy or convenient to reduce the Duke to a two-dimensional character, to do so is to produce a willful or ignorant misrepresentation of him. His rhetoric alone is dazzling, complex, as obfuscating as it is revealing of his character. Moreover, the poem also has the characters of the Duchess and Envoy to evaluate, both of whom become complex in proportion to the maturity and perceptiveness of an ever-present 4th character--you, the reader (or "implied reader," as the Reader-Response crowd would designate him).

Lesson: Don't mess with Browning unless you're willing to become an active participant in the poetry which, admittedly, can involve considerable patience, time and work. Even Pound is easier, if only because he allows a reader more "wiggle room."
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Mary L. Tabor on July 10, 2007
Format: Paperback
"Grow old along with me!/ The best is yet to be ...." Great line--quoted recently and beautifully by Christopher Plummer in the popular movie "Must Love Dogs," but did you know it comes from the poem "Rabbi Ben Ezra"? This book discovers Browning as never before. Not only will you find the chestnuts you've heard over the years, but you will read them in context. Not only will you see the breadth and depth of this poet's work, but also find extraordinary essays on his technique and discussions of specific poems by Carlyle and James and Hopkins sitting right next to essays by Harold Bloom and other present-day luminaries. And to boot, you won't be overwhelmed by footnotes, but when you find one, it will be in plain English. This is a book to treasure.
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9 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Christiana R. Mollin on May 11, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like the contents of the book just fine. The print is easy to read, and the poems are laid out nicely. But the glued binding of this book is going to go quickly. The first time I opened the book I could feel its flimsiness. Soon, I am sure, I'm going to be left with nothing but chunks of book.

Are there not any books that are still stitched together?

Christiana Mollin
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