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Keats the Poet
Stuart M. Sperry
With a new afterword by the author

Paperback | 1994 | $62.50 | £52.95 | ISBN: 9780691000893
362 pp. | 5 1/2 x 8 1/2
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Keats the Poet was first published in 1973, just as the crest of all the New-Critical exegeses had passed, leaving the critical literature with a wealth of fine readings, but without a real organizing program within which to view them. Stuart Sperry established such a frame of reference. Further, he did so with such prescience that even the most radical deconstructive or new historical approaches to Keats today must bear witness to their inception in Sperry's emphasis on, and subtle demonstration of, the centrality of "indeterminacy' in the poet. Now available in paperback for the first time, this work will enlighten a new generation of readers.


"A book of great and possibly final importance in Keats studies. . . . "--The Times Literary Supplement

"Among comprehensive critical studies of the past twenty years, Stuart M. Sperry's Keats the Poet has been a standard reference, rooted in mainstream criticism but pointing the way to much that became central in the revisionary criticism of the years since its publication."--Walter H. Evert and Jack W. Rhodes, MLA


"This is still simply the best book written on Keats. With a figure as important and as consistently attractive to students as Keats, to have written a book that has stood unrivalled for a generation is a real distinction."--Stuart Curran, University of Pennsylvania

"This study has yet to be superseded in studies of Keats."--Susan Wolfson, Princeton University

Table of Contents:

1 A Poetry of Sensation 3
2 The Chemistry of the Poetic Process 30
3 The Early Verse 72
4 The Allegory of Endymion 90
5 The Epistle to John Hamilton Reynolds 117
6 The Northern Walking Tour 132
7 The First Hyperion 155
8 Romance as Wish Fulfillment: The Eve of St. Agnes 198
9 From The Eve of Saint Mark to "La Belle Dame sans Merci" 221
10 Romantic Irony: The Great Odes of the Spring 242
11 Comic Irony: Lamia 292
12 Tragic Irony: The Fall of Hyperion 310
Epilogue. "To Autumn" 336
Afterword (1994) 343
Index 347

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