Modernist poetry heralded a radical new aesthetic of experimentation, pioneering new verse forms and subjects, and changing the very notion of what it meant to be a poet. This volume examines T.S. Eliot, T.E. Hulme and Ezra Pound, three of the most influential figures of the modernist movement, and argues that we cannot dissociate their bold, inventive poetic forms from their profoundly engaged theories of social and political reform.
Tracing the complex theoretical foundations of modernist poetics, Rebecca Beasley examines:
the aesthetic modes and theories that formed a context for modernism
the influence of contemporary philosophical movements
the modernist critique of democracy
the importance of the First World War
modernism's programmes for social reform.
This volume offers invaluable insight into the modernist movement, as well as demonstrating the deep influence of the three poets on the shape and values of the discipline of English Literature itself. Theorists of Modernist Poetry is relevant not only to students of modernism, but to all those with an interest in why we study, teach, read and evaluate literature the way we do.
Rebecca Beasley teaches in the School of English and Humanities, Birkbeck, University of London, and is the author of Ezra Pound and the Visual Culture of Modernism (2007).