Ezra Pound

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Ezra Pound. Ezra Pound AND Imagism. Ezra Pound. The man who shaped Modernism!. Pound’s Biography (Encyclopedia Britannica). - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • Ezra PoundEzra Pound AND Imagism

  • Ezra PoundThe man who shaped Modernism!

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)Ezra Pound,in fullEzra Loomis Pound (bornOct. 30, 1885,Hailey,Idaho, U.S.diedNov. 1, 1972,Venice,Italy),American poet and critic, a supremely discerning and energetic entrepreneur ofthe artswho did more than any other single figure to advance a modern movement in English andAmerican literature. Pound promoted, and also occasionally helped to shape, the work of such widely different poets and novelists asWilliam Butler Yeats,James Joyce,Ernest Hemingway,Robert Frost, D.H. Lawrence, and T.S. Eliot. His pro-Fascistbroadcasts in Italy during World War II led to his postwar arrest and confinement until 1958.

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)In the autumn of 1907, Pound became professor ofRomance languagesat Wabash Presbyterian College, Crawfordsville, Ind. Although his generalbehaviourfairly reflected his Presbyterian upbringing, he was already writingpoetryand was affecting a bohemian manner. His career came quickly to an end, and in February 1908, with light luggage and the manuscript of a book of poems that had been rejected by at least one American publisher, he set sail for Europe.

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)Pound was born in a small mining town in Idaho, the only child of a Federal Land Office official, Homer Loomis Pound of Wisconsin, and Isabel Weston of New York City. About 1887 the family moved to the eastern states, and in June 1889, following Homer Pounds appointment to the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia, they settled in nearby Wyncote, where Pound lived a normal middle-class childhood.After two years at Cheltenham Military Academy, which he left without graduating, he attended a local high school. From there he went for two years (190103) to theUniversity of Pennsylvania, where he met his lifelong friend, the poetWilliam Carlos Williams. He took a Ph.B. (bachelor of philosophy) degree atHamilton College, Clinton, N.Y., in 1905 and returned to the University of Pennsylvania for graduate work. He received his M.A. in June 1906 but withdrew from the university after working one more year toward his doctorate. He left with a knowledge of Latin, Greek, French, Italian, German, Spanish, Provenal, and Anglo-Saxon, as well as of Englishliteratureand grammar.

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)He had been to Europe three times before, the third time alone in the summer of 1906, when he had gathered the material for his first three published articles:Raphaelite Latin,concerning the Latin poets of the Renaissance, andInteresting French Publications,concerning the troubadours (both published in theBook News Monthly, Philadelphia, September 1906), andBurgos, a Dream City of Old Castile(October issue).

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)Now, with little money, he sailed to Gibraltar and southern Spain, then on to Venice, where in June 1908 he published, at his own expense, his first book of poems,A lume spento. About September 1908 he went to London, where he was befriended by the writer and editorFord Madox Ford(who published him in hisEnglish Review), enteredWilliam Butler Yeatss circle, and joined the school of images, a modern group presided over by the philosopherT.E. Hulme.

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)In England, success came quickly to Pound. A book of poems,Personae, was published in April 1909; a second book,Exultations, followed in October; and a third book,The Spirit of Romance, based on lectures delivered in London (190910), was published in 1910.After a trip homea last desperate and unsuccessful attempt to make a literary life for himself in Philadelphia or New York Cityhe returned to Europe in February 1911, visiting Italy, Germany, and France. Toward the end of 1911 he met an English journalist,Alfred R. Orage, editor of the socialist weeklyNew Age, who opened its pages to him and provided him with a small but regular income during the next nine years.

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)In 1912 Pound became London correspondent for the small magazinePoetry(Chicago); he did much to enhance the magazines importance and was soon a dominant figure in Anglo-American verse. He was among the first to recognize and review the poetry ofRobert FrostandD.H. Lawrenceand to praise the sculpture of the modernistsJacob EpsteinandHenri Gaudier-Brzeska. As leader of theImagistmovement of 191214, successor of the school of images, he drew up the first Imagist manifesto, with its emphasis on direct and sparselanguageand precise images in poetry, and he edited the first Imagist anthology,Des Imagistes(1914).

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)A shaper of modern literatureThough his friend Yeats had already become famous, Pound succeeded in persuading him to adopt a new, leaner style of poetic composition. In 1914, the year of his marriage to Dorothy Shakespear, daughter of Yeatss friend Olivia Shakespear, he began a collaboration with the then-unknownJames Joyce. As unofficial editor ofThe Egoist(London) and later as London editor ofThe Little Review(New York City), he saw to the publication of Joyces novelsPortrait of the Artist as a Young ManandUlysses, thus spreading Joyces name and securing financial assistance for him. In that same year he gaveT.S. Eliota similar start in his career as poet and critic.

  • Pounds Biography(Encyclopedia Britannica)He continued to publish his own poetry (Ripostes, 1912;Lustra, 1916) andprosecriticism (Pavannes and Divisions, 1918). From the literary remains of the great OrientalistErnest Fenollosa, which had been presented to Pound in 1913, he succeeded in publishing highly acclaimed English versions of early Chinese poetry,Cathay(1915), and two volumes of Japanese Noh plays (191617) as well.

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  • Vortograph portrait of Ezra Pound by Alvin Langdon Coburn

  • Contributions to Modernist PoetryMore than any other writer, he was responsible for dramatic changes occurring with poetry.Urged writers to make it newInfluenced other writers to discard traditional forms, techniques, and ideasExperimented with new approachesHis movement was called IMAGISM

  • Poetry in Pictures

    Imagist poets focused their writing on simple images. They attempted to use words to paint pictures in their readers minds.

  • What is Imagism?A poetic movement established in1912 by American and English poets Ezra Pound, Hilda Doolittle, Richard Aldington, and F. S. FlintInspired by the critical views of T.E. Hulme, in response to the careless thought and Romantic optimism he saw prevailing in the literary arena.

  • Led by Ezra Pound, this poetic movement was part of a poetic insurgence against genteel poetry, which was overly sentimental and emotionally dishonest. Imagist poets believed that Romantic art was oveexcessively subjective, and argued for a renewed emphasis on the object-like nature of the art-work. Imagists penned concise verses with dry piercing clarity, exacting visual images and imagery.

  • ImagismPoetry written that evokes pictures or images for the readerDirect presentation of images, or word picturesWord choice is specificAdjectives are used to enhance the specificity of word choice, BUT they are not over-used.Attempt to freeze a single moment in time and capture the emotions of that momentImagist poetry often reflect influences of haiku or tanka

  • Pounds PoetryHis poetry reflects a deep interest in the past, particularly of ancient culturesChinese, Japanese, and Provencal FrenchPoems are filled with literary and historical allusionsHis poems are difficult to understand because they are void of explanations and generalizationsWrote The Cantos, long poetic sequence where he expressed his beliefs (eventually totaling 116 cantos)

  • Influences on ImagismImagist poems were influenced by Japanese haiku poems of seventeen syllables which usually present only two juxtaposed images. This poetry strives to suggests more than its literal meaning, yet avoids overt figurative devices like allegories and metaphors.Ezra Pounds poem In a Station of the Metro is a clear example of Japanese influence. Pound states, I wrote a thirty-line poem, and destroyed it because it was what we call work 'of second intensity.' Six months later I made a poem half that length; a year later I made the following hokku-like sentence: The apparition of these faces in the crowd; Petals on a wet, black bough.

  • AllusionAn allusion is a reference to something well known (ie: piece of art, literature, historical event)

  • Pounds Poem

  • "In A Station of the Metro"In this poem the poet intends the reader to understand that the faces seen in a subway station are like wet, fallen flower petals on a bough.However, the poet also wants to deepen the reader's perception.ThisPound accomplishes by the word that appears at the head of the poem: 'apparition'. In this single word Pound - displaying his Modernist credentials - allies himself with the tradition in western poetry of comparing souls to fallen leaves. These people may have been observed in a subway station, but the reader is meant toperceivethem asfigurative spirits of the dead - a standard Modernist allusion.

  • "In A Station of the Metro"There are no verbs in this poem, making it only a juxtaposition of two images. I use that word, juxtaposition, not to be pretentious but to convey a sense of visual placement, as if the poet were a painter and these images are visibly beside each other as if in a painting. The semicolon is an interesting choice. Given that Pound described this poem as an equation, and that the semicolon can be used to (somewhat