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  • _la_belle_dame_
    OK, folks. Time to emerge from hibernation. It s spring, and in a week and a half I ll be a sophomore! Let s talk some Keats! ~Belle
    Message 1 of 7 , May 13, 2002
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      OK, folks. Time to emerge from hibernation. It's spring, and in a
      week and a half I'll be a sophomore! Let's talk some Keats!

      ~Belle
    • nights_of_thunder
      Agreed, Belle... I am reading the biography Darkling I Listen and it s pretty good so far. I have a question...out of all the Keats biogs you guys have read,
      Message 2 of 7 , May 13, 2002
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        Agreed, Belle...

        I am reading the biography "Darkling I
        Listen" and it's pretty good so far. I have
        a question...out of all the Keats biogs
        you guys have read, which do you think
        best represents his life?

        I have many, many books about Keats
        & was just wondering what you think.

        Kane
      • _la_belle_dame_
        I LOVE Darkling I Listen. I raved about it for months after I read it (hey, I still am!). . . had to restrain myself from crying at the end. . . It s very
        Message 3 of 7 , May 13, 2002
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          I LOVE "Darkling I Listen." I raved about it for months after I read
          it (hey, I still am!). . . had to restrain myself from crying at the
          end. . . It's very well written, almost story-like in some places
          rather than strictly biographical, even though all the information
          itself is true.

          As for biographies in general, I've never really read one all the way
          through other than "Darkling." I have the Motion biography, which is
          extremely long and tedious in parts, but it's good as a reference,
          and I've skimmed through parts of the Gittings (which, I've heard, is
          one of the best), though this one is relatively hard to find except
          for in large libraries. I did, however, read a very interesting
          biography on Keats' sister, Fanny, which had some really great
          interesting (including two photos, which I have included in the photo
          section here in the group) that I've not found elsewhere, about not
          only Keats, but Fanny Brawne and other important figures in the Keats
          world, like Richard Abbey, Severn, etc. This one's even harder to
          find (it was published in the late 1930s. . . the author actually met
          with Fanny's grandchildren in Madrid), but it's a must-read if you
          can get your hands on it.

          As for which best represents his life, I think it's hard to tell. I
          think every biographer has a different opinion of Keats depending on
          when the biography was written. The earlier biographies probably
          take on the more Victorian idea of the "poor, sensitive, helpless
          Keats," where the more modern biographers have driven to eradicate
          this opinion (and have almost gone too far in doing so). I think
          that for the best overall picture, you need to get a healthy mix of
          different views. So, the more you read, the more information you
          get, and the better you are able to deduce your own opinion. I know
          that, at least in my experience, the more you start looking for
          sources not necessarily directly ABOUT Keats, you find the most
          interesting information (the Fanny Keats book, for example). There's
          also a book called "The Immortal Dinner" by Penelope Hughes-Hallet
          that is essentially about Haydon, but contains interesting tidbits
          about Keats that, interestingly enough, I've not found elsewhere (for
          example, the true origin of Hunt's nickname for him, "Junkets"). In
          fact, I believe it is the Fanny K biography in which the author,
          Marie Adami, states that there is much more information out there
          than biographers are writing (well, this WAS in the 1930s, but I've
          got to believe that not a whole lot has changed in that arena).
          Whether these biographers just aren't looking beyond established
          institutions and sources for their information, or still have that
          Victorian penchant for protecting "poor Keats" by suppressing
          information, I am not sure. Still, the fact remains that for the
          most complete picture of who Keats was, we need to go beyond Motion
          and Gittings and whoever else has written a relatively well-known
          biography.

          Thanks for starting us off with a topic, Kane!

          ~Belle :-)
        • nights_of_thunder
          Belle, Yes, I am in the middle of Darkling and one I have read all the way through is Aileen Warden s The Making of a Poet . I have the ones by Gittings,
          Message 4 of 7 , May 14, 2002
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            Belle,

            Yes, I am in the middle of "Darkling" and one I have read all the way
            through is Aileen Warden's "The Making of a Poet". I have the ones by
            Gittings, one by Bate, one by Coote, the Andrew Motion book and some
            others whose authors I don't know off-hand. Ward's was quite good, not
            as tedious as Motion's.

            I have biogs on Shelley as well, and one of my favourites (by Andre
            Maurois, is it?) plays out like a storybook. It is called "Ariel: the
            life of Shelley". Many of my Shelley books are old or antique, usually
            aquired from old bookstores right here in my city.

            Hey, have you heard of the "Days with the Poets" series...VERY old,
            possibly late-1800s...I have Shelley's, which plays out like a story,
            as well (I find that, yes, many of the old books do tend to play out
            like stories). There is one for Keats & Byron, plus a few others.

            BTW, Gitting's biog was just re-printed and should be in bookstores
            now. I had bought the new re-print but found a much older edition in a
            bookstore which I bought, as well. I like the older ones.

            Kane
          • _la_belle_dame_
            There s a reprint of the Gittings bio? When did it come out? I did a search on Amazon with only the original coming up. I ll have to check Barnes and Noble
            Message 5 of 7 , May 14, 2002
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              There's a reprint of the Gittings bio? When did it come out? I did
              a search on Amazon with only the original coming up.

              I'll have to check Barnes and Noble or Borders when I get home.
              Thanks for the tip.

              ~Belle
            • nights_of_thunder
              Yes, the latest reprint is 2001, the publisher is Classic Biography . Should be on Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble (US) and chapters.indigo.ca (Canada) Kane
              Message 6 of 7 , May 15, 2002
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                Yes, the latest reprint is 2001, the
                publisher is "Classic Biography".
                Should be on Amazon.com, Barnes &
                Noble (US) and chapters.indigo.ca
                (Canada)

                Kane
              • _la_belle_dame_
                Hmmmm. . . still no result on either Amazon or bn.com. Maybe I ll check with the bookstore when I get home. Otherwise, I can always just go searching for an
                Message 7 of 7 , May 16, 2002
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                  Hmmmm. . . still no result on either Amazon or bn.com. Maybe I'll
                  check with the bookstore when I get home. Otherwise, I can always
                  just go searching for an old copy :-)

                  ~Belle
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