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the experience of reading in Britain, from 1450 to 1945...

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Listings for Author:  

Wilfred Owen


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Wilfred Owen : [war poems]

'Growing up in a family that read newspapers only for sport and scandal, Vernon Scannell knew all the great prize fighters by age thirteen, "but I could not have named the Prime Minister of the day..." The history and geography he was taught at school were never related to contemporary events. Remarkably, Scannell had read widely about the last war: the poetry of Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, Edmund Blunden's "Undertones of War", and Robert Graves's "Goodbye to All That". The Penguin edition of "A Farewell to Arms" so overwhelmed him that he tried to write his own Great War novel in a Hemingway style. But none of this translated into any awareness that another war might be on the way'.

Century: 1900-1945     Reader/Listener/Group: Vernon Scannell      Print: Book


Wilfred Owen : [war poetry]

'Later in my teens, on a first visit to London, I bought for one-and-six in the Charing Cross Road, a red-covered copy of "The War Poems of Siegfried Sassoon". it was my first clear view of my father's world of 1914-18, and I went on to read Graves, Blunden, Owen'.

Century: 1900-1945     Reader/Listener/Group: Charles Causley      Print: Book


Wilfred Owen : Strange Meeting

'Read "An Anthology of War Poems", introduced by Edmund Blunden. Owen's poetry stands well above all the others - his "Strange Meeting" is worth all the others put together - or nearly so. Branford's sonnets are conspicuous and Sassoon's work distinctive, but Owen has not only Branford's "high seriousness" and Sasoon's objectivity but also a sure craftsmanship - he is always the artist in full control of his medium. Beside his work, Sassoon's sounds almost hysterical and Blunden's slightly artificial. After laying down this book I realised for the first time that, notwithstanding the large company of our war poets, our really fine war poems are very few in number.'

Century: 1900-1945     Reader/Listener/Group: William Soutar      Print: Book


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