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bob scheetz <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 3 Nov 1999 23:20:06 -0500
text/plain (49 lines)
     good reply
...am pretty green at this stuff, so please forgive the howlers
tend to want to divide ep between "personae" and "cantos"
as apprentice & master work,
is this basically right?
and, along those lines,
read cantos, genre-wise,  cognate  with don juan.
thence, the byronic ethos is the controlling trope, no?
the anti-thesis to eliot & keats.
so, if not narcissist, how about feminist?
-----Original Message-----
From: Richard Edwards <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wednesday, November 03, 1999 4:36 AM
Subject: Re: A summary for Richard Caddel
>I agree there are aspects of Pound's character that are distinctly
>narcissistic. The narcissism is evident in the early poems (though not, to
>my mind, in Propertius or Cathay); Mauberley takes a self-critical glance
>this kind of self-regarding poesy, as the aesthetic style of the '90s is
>brutally rebutted by the War. Oddly, I don't see the Cantos as a
>narcissistic poem at all. Pound was aiming rather higher than mere
>"self-expression" and fantasy.
>Whilst Pound the man clearly held a high opinion of himself in many
>respects, he was not prone to praising his own work and was unusually
>selfless in the pursuit of recognition for others. This observation is of
>course a commonplace in discussions about Pound but it is nonetheless true
>and we should not lose sight of it.
>It seems to me that a reader who is determined to indulge his or her own
>"personal poet manque narcissism" will succeed in doing so whatever
>particular poet he or she happens to be reading. I don't see how Pound's
>work can be said to lend itself particularly to that kind of abuse. Surely
>the work of, say, John Berryman is a far richer source of titillation for
>the narcissistic poet manque than Pound's is.
>When exactly did the "age of narcissism" begin? 4000 BC?
>Richard Edwards