“What the mob at Oxford hated was the intolerable idea that this different human being should claim a manhood equal to their own.”
The author of J.B. and twice the winner of the Pulitzer Prize, ARCHIBALD MACLEISH, an American poet, is a profound admirer of Jorge Guillén, whom he regards as Spain’s foremost living poet. Dr. Guillén came to America in 1938, where for 17 years he was a member of the Wellesley faculty In 1959 he was the Charles Eliot Norton lecturer at Harvard.
First, last, and always a poet, ARCHIBALD MACLEISH has been for varying periods a lawyer in Boston, an editor of FORTUNE magazine, the Librarian of Congress, Assistant Secretary of Stale, and one of the first Americans to serve in UNESCO. He is today the Boylston Professor of English and Rhetoric at Harvard, and through his lecturing here and abroad he has become uncomfortably aware of the status of the American artist.
Poet and winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1932 and 1953 and of the National Book Award and the Bollingen Prize in 1953, public servant who as Librarian of Congress also served in the Office of War Information and later was Assistant Secretary of State, ARCHIBALD MACLEISH left Washington in 1949 to become Boylston Professor of English and Rhetoric at Harvard. Here in his lectures before packed audiences he strives to remove the obstacles between poet and reader, and in his seminars on writing he seeks to instill the veneration for poetry as an art which shines through these pages.
Poet and lawyer and public servant, ARCHIBALD MACLEISH has answered many callings in his distinctive career, He has twice been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry—first in 1932, and again in 1953 on the publication of his Collected Poems. He has given considerable thought to the use of poetry on the stage; he has written four verse plays for radio, all of which have had stage as well as radio production, and in the essay which follows he examines the critical dictum of his friend, the poet and playwright, T. S. Eliot.
An American who has never ceased to fight for Freedom. ARCHIBALD MACLEISH graduated from Yale in 1915 and was admitted to the Massachusetts Bar in 1920. But he resigned from one of Boston’s leading lw firms on the very day he had hern elected a partner, and as a free lance in Bans devoted full time to his poetry, for which he was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1932. The author of twenty-three volumes, he laid aside his writing for a time to serve as the Librarian of Congress (1939-1944)Assistant Secretary of State (1944-1945), and Chairman of the American Delegation to the UN conferences which created UNESCO (1945).