Auden, W(ystan) H(ugh) 1907–
English-born American of Icelandic ancestry, Auden is an international man of letters, a poet, playwright, and critic. He is primarily interested in man's relation to society and to God. (See also Contemporary Authors, Vols. 9-10.)
Auden had the vitality, the sheer poetic exuberance, to be able to impose his own authentic accent on all he touched. His bewildering use of imagery drawn from English public school life, his ambivalent metaphors from military manoeuvres and mountain climbing, his clinical obsessions and his psychological jargon, his private jokes and sudden clowning—all these were often bewildering; but they looked like the beginnings of a significant new...
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