Philip Larkin was a keen amateur photographer and through his life he made images of the people, places and things that meant most to him. Publishing ahead of the thirtieth anniversary of the poet's death in December 2015, The Importance of Elsewhere gathers the best of Larkin's photographic work, divided into short thematic chapters arranged in chronological order. Written by Richard Bradford, the acclaimed author of the Larkin biography First Boredom, Then Fear, the book shows how Larkin, as an individual, as a writer and indeed as a photographer, developed an acute sensitivity to all aspects of the world around him, from his love of open uninhabited landscapes and empty churches to his mixed feelings about crowds. There are also fascinating portraits of those people who were closest to Larkin, including his lovers, his mother and his literary peers. Authorised by the Larkin Estate, the book beautifully reproduces around 150 images from over 1,500 held by the Larkin archive at Hull: the great majority have never previously been seen in print. A substantial foreword by Mark Haworth-Booth, formerly curator of photography at the V&A and a poet in his own right, explores what it meant to be a serious amateur photographer of Larkin's generation. Larkin was a talented photographer and the archive is effectively his illustrated life. Together with Larkin's literary works and his letters, these images make up the third, so far unseen, constituent of the material upon which our future perceptions of him will be based.
This book explores Larkin’s engagement with popular culture both as a threat to poetic authority and as a necessary form of cultural capital. It reveals the processes by which the social, contemporary, and politically charged practices of everyday life become the property of the cultured individual.
Letters Home gives access to the last major archive of Larkin's writing to remain unpublished: the letters to members of his family. These correspondences help tell the story of how Larkin came to be the writer and the man he was: to his father Sydney, a 'conservative anarchist' and admirer of Hitler, who died relatively early in Larkin's life; to his timid depressive mother Eva, who by contrast, lived long, and whose final years were shadowed by dementia; and to his sister Kitty, the sparse surviving fragment of whose correspondence with her brother gives an enigmatic glimpse of a complex and intimate relationship- But it was the years during which he and his sister looked after their mother in particular that shaped the writer we know so well: a number of poems written over this time are for her, and the mood of pain, shadow and despondency that characterises his later verse draws its strength from his experience of the long, lonely years of her senility. One surprising element in the volume, however, is the joie de vivre shown in the large number of witty and engaging drawings of himself and Eva, as 'Young Creature' and 'Old Creature', with which he enlivens his letters throughout the three decades of her widowhood. This important edition, meticulously edited by Larkin's biographer, James Booth, is a key piece of scholarship that completes the portrait of this most cherished of English poets.
Philip Larkin and Charles Tomlinson in Contemporary Britain
Author: Magdalena Kay
Category: Literary Criticism
Poetry Against the World: Philip Larkin and Charles Tomlinson in Contemporary Britain brings together two major poets, who espouse opposite aesthetic ambitions, yet are both taken as paragons of Englishness, in order to ask how they pitch their poetry against an inhospitable world. This book explores how these two representative poets seek to redress an "age of demolition" through their poetry, and how their audiences react to the types of redress they propose.
Philip Larkin (1992-1985) Is Today Acclaimed As A British National Cultural Icon. Historically A Movementeer, Larkin Followed The Pleasure Principle To Democratize Poetry By Forging A Distinctive Philistine Aesthetic, By Employing A Defiantly Demotic Diction, And By Building His Poems Around A Structure Of Rational Discourse.Philip Larkin : Poetry That Builds Bridges Is A Well-Researched And Immensely Readable Book. It Is Perhaps The Only Work Available Today That Offers A Comprehensive Critical Account Of The Full Range Of Larkin S Poetry. A Significant Contribution To Larkin Studies, This Book Provides A Between-The-Lines Analysis Of Almost All The Poems Embodied In The Four Major Collections Of Larkin The North Ship, The Less Deceived, The Whitsun Weddings And High Windows.By Exploiting The Resources Of Larkin S Letters, His Prose Writings And His Biography, The Author Traces, Much Against The Grain Of Contemporary Larkin Criticism, The Poet S Thematic, Attitudinal And Technical Development From One Book Of His Poetry To The Next, And Shows The Trend Of Larkin S Evolution.With A Holistic Approach To The Total Corpus Of Larkin S Poetry, The Author Perspectivises The Poet, And Argues The Larkin S Achievements Lie In His Success In Building Bridges Between Aestheticism And Philistinism, Between Empiricism And Transcendentalism, Between Classicism And Romanticism, Between Modernism And Postmodernism, Between The Native British Poetic Tradition And The Anglo-Franco-American Experimental Line, And, Above All, Between Poetry And The Reading Public.This Book Also Contends The Larkin S Vision Of Life Is Neither Pessimistic Nor Optimistic, But Tragic And Melioristic.
James Booth reads Philip Larkin's mature poetry in terms of his ambiguous self-image as lonely, anti-social outsider, plighted to his art, and as nine-to-five librarian, sharing the common plight of humanity. Booth's focus is on Larkin's artistry with words, the 'verbal devices' through which this purest of lyric poets celebrates 'the experience. The beauty.' Featuring discussion for the first time of two recently discovered poems by Larkin, this original and exciting new study will be of interest to all students, scholars and enthusiasts of Larkin.
This beautifully illustrated book accompanies a major exhibition of William Holman Hunt’s work. It explores the nature and significance of the artist’s vision and its relevance to modern audiences. Despite the great interest in Pre-Raphaelitism, it has been nearly forty years since the last exhibition devoted to Holman Hunt, one of the founders of the movement. His vision, which inspired the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, has lost neither its timeliness or relevance. The book illustrates paintings by Hunt and his associates, John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and Arthur Hughes, and also includes drawings, prints, photographs, decorative arts, costumes and archival material. It examines Hunt’s work in the context of the Brotherhood, and his ideas in relation to the artistic, spiritual, intellectual, emotional and social crises of his age. By focusing on themes that remain relevant in the twenty-first century, the book sheds news light on Victorian neuroses, anxiety and the crisis of faith. Contributors include: - Jonathan Mané-Wheoki, Director of Art and Visual Culture, Te Papa, National Museum of New Zealand - Jan Marsh, independent scholar - Linda Parry, Curator of Textiles (retired), Victoria & Albert Museum - Carole Silver, Professor of English and Chair of the Humanities Division, Yeshiva University, New York - Nicholas Tromans, Lecturer, Kingston University, London - Joyce Townsend, Paintings Conservator, Tate Britain - Carol Jacobi, Associate Lecturer, Birkbeck College, University of London - Brenda Rix, Assistant Curator, Prints and Drawings, AGO - Katharine Lochnan, Deputy Director, Research and The R.Fraser Elliott Curator, Prints and Drawings, AGO