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Auden

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss WH Auden's life and poetry from Europe before WWII, reflecting on his travels to Spain, China and Germany and the rise of totalitarianism.

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the life and poetry of WH Auden (1907-1973) up to his departure from Europe for the USA in 1939. As well as his personal life, he addressed suffering and confusion, and the moral issues that affected the wider public in the 1930s and tried to unpick what was going wrong in society and to understand those times. He witnessed the rise of totalitarianism in the austerity of that decade, travelling through Germany to Berlin, seeing Spain in the Civil War and China during its wars with Japan, often collaborating with Christopher Isherwood. In his lifetime his work attracted high praise and intense criticism, and has found new audiences in the fifty years since his death, sometimes taking literally what he meant ironically.

With

Mark Ford
Poet and Professor of English at University College London

Janet Montefiore
Professor Emerita of 20th Century English Literature at the University of Kent

And

Jeremy Noel-Tod
Senior Lecturer in Literature and Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia

Producer: Simon Tillotson

Available now

53 minutes

Last on

Thu 19 Dec 2019 21:30

LINKS AND FURTHER READING

Mark Ford at University College London

Janet Montefiore at the University of Kent

Jeremy Noel-Tod at the University of East Anglia

W. H. Auden – Wikipedia

 

READING LIST:

W.H. Auden, Collected Shorter Poems 1927-1957 (first published 1969; Faber & Faber, 2003)

W.H. Auden, Collected Longer Poems (first published 1968; Random House, 2002)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), Selected Poems: revised edition (Faber and Faber, 2007)

W.H. Auden (ed. John Fuller), W.H. Auden: Poems selected by John Fuller (Faber and Faber, 2009)

W.H. Auden (ed. Arthur Kirsch), Lectures on Shakespeare (Princeton University Press 2019)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), The Complete Works of W.H. Auden: Prose and Travel Books in Prose and Verse: Volume I. 1926-1938 (Princeton University Press, 1997)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), The Complete Works of W.H. Auden: Prose: Volume II, 1939-1948 (Princeton University Press, 2002)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), The Complete Works of W. H. Auden, Volume III: Prose: 1949-1955 (Princeton University Press, 2008)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), The Complete Works of W. H. Auden: Prose: Volume IV, 1956-1962 (Princeton University Press, 2010)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), The Complete Works of W. H. Auden: Prose: Volume V, 1963–1968 (Princeton University Press, 2015)

W.H. Auden (ed. Edward Mendelson), W. H. Auden Collected Poems (Random House, 1976)

John Fuller, W.H.Auden: A Commentary (first published 1998; Faber and Faber, 2007)

Samuel Hynes, The Auden Generation: Literature and Politics in England in the 1930s (Pimlico, 1992)

Edward Mendelson, Early Auden (first published 1981; Faber and Faber, 1999)

Edward Mendelson, Later Auden (first published 1986; Farrar Straus Giroux, 2000)

Edward Mendelson, The English Auden: Poems, Essays, and Dramatic Writings, 1927-1939 (first published 1977; Faber and Faber 2001)

Ian Sansom, September 1, 1939: A Biography of a Poem (Fourth Estate, 2019)

Tony Sharpe, W.H.Auden in Context (Cambridge University Press, 2012)

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