Uncollected writings, new interpretations
The second volume in the Auden Studies series, "The Language of Learning and the Language of Love", focuses on the first decade of Auden's literary career and considers his experiences both as a public figure and a private individual. It contains previously unpublished or uncollected poems and prose by Auden, all with scholarly introductions and annotation. The volume reveals how Auden, as poet, teacher, and dramatist, battled with his literary ancestors, experienced love, and devised a rhetoric to express both homosexual feelings and artistic impulses.
Contributions to Auden Studies 2 include poems, songs, and a piece of early travel writing introduced by Auden's new biographer, the historian Richard Davenport-Hines. Lyrics offered to Benjamin Britten as cabaret songs are presented by Donald Mitchell, Philip Reed, and Nicholas Jenkins. Also in the volume is a fascinating array of essays about Auden by leading scholars in the field, including Stan Smith and Katherine Bucknell, and the German scholar and close friend of Auden, David Luke. A further Supplement to Bloomfield and Mendelson's magisterial Auden Bibliography of 1972 is supplied by Edward Mendelson.
"The Language of Learning and the Language of Love" will be of immense interest to all readers of W. H. Auden and of twentieth-century poetry.