The Movement consisted of a group of like-minded English poets, loosely associated together in the mid-1950’s. Their intention was to redirect the course of English poetry away from the neo-Romantic Symbolist and Imagistic poetry of William Butler Yeats and Dylan Thomas. At the same time, they also disavowed the modernist poetry of the 1920’s and 1930’s, represented by T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and W. H. Auden. Instead, they sought to place English poetry back into the tradition last represented by Thomas Hardy, of formal verse and accessible meaning, modestly covering everyday experience.
Of this group of poets, Philip Larkin (1922-1985) emerged as the most popular. His poetry did a good deal to re-engage poetry with a more popular audience. Other poets, such as Kingsley Amis (1922-1995) and John Wain (1925-1994), made wider names for themselves as novelists, especially as part of the group known as the Angry Young Men. Many of the group were academics, and their critical writings helped shape the course of British literature for the next two decades.