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text ´ Ó Jonathan Bate

Ted HughesYears in his archives unearthing a wealth of new material Here for the first time is the full story of Ted Hughes's life and work At its centre is Hughes’s lifelong uest to come to terms with the suicide of his first wife Sylvia Plat What a rueful concession for a biographer to make Ted Hughes remains “her husband” the poet who presided over what — in a remorseful moment — Hughes himself called the murder of Sylvia PlathIn an exculpatory narrative Jonathan Bate tries to reverse the momentum of literary history making Plath the wife of Ted Hughes poet laureate and winner of virtually all the important poetry prizes This canny biographer succeeds in his aim but at a terrible cost to his subject Plath continues to overpower Hughes on every page Bate is taken prisoner by her myth even as he tries to rectify the distorted narratives of Plath biographers who put her firstFor Hughes and his biographer Plath is too much and every page of this biography on which she does not appear is weakened by her absence — notwithstanding Bate’s wit and gift for putting other biographers in their placeOn the final page of his book Bate declares defeat Neither Hughes nor his biographer can deny that Plath’s death was the “central fact” of the poet’s life In “Birthday Letters” published shortly before his own death Hughes gave his account of the marriage declaring his own doom He was never able to move beyond the boundaries for their lives and poetry that Plath’s own writing enforcedAs Bate demonstrates Hughes began his elegy for himself and Plath not so long after her suicide but for than 30 years he could not bear to publish his autobiographical verse dreading the outcry from those who considered him responsible for her demiseBate’s narrative is unfortunately dulled all too often by accounts of Hughes’ second rate work So put out is Bate with Hughes’ dramaturgical ineptitude that the biographer offers advice on how the work could have been improved Bate is conspicuously relieved when he is able to end with Hughes’ well received translation of Ovid and the recovery of poetic power all too often stifled in the decades after Plath’s deathBut Hughes’ culpability in Plath’s death ultimately overwhelms the biographer who seeks out other guilty parties charging critic Al Alvarez with failing Sylvia at a critical moment when she sought his love Alvarez in Bate’s roman noir is also the spurned lover of Assia Wevill whom Hughes went to when he left Plath Thus Alvarez’s moving account in “The Savage God” of Plath’s last days becomes in Bate’s uestionable telling a revenge plot against Hughes who nobly never exposed Alvarez’s role in Plath’s deathThat Bate has provided new depth to Ted Hughes’ biography and drawn on sources unavailable to other biographers is indisputable but many of his touted revelations — for example that Hughes was sleeping with another woman the night Plath died — have been reported elsewhere This fact was included in my book “American Isis The Life and Art of Sylvia Plath” which was published in 2013He also only hints at shadowy stories in the Hughes archive that are bound to emerge We still need to know why Hughes — so attractive to women— constantly fell under their thrall as emanations of the “white goddess” he first read about in Robert Graves who located the origins of civilization in a matriarchy that men would eventually find ways to overturn

Jonathan Bate Ó Ted Hughes ePub

With an eual gift for poetry and prose he had a magnetic personality and an insatiable appetite for friendship for love and for lifeBut he attracted scandal than any poet since Lord ByronRenowned scholar Sir Jonathan Bate has spent five Fascinating and clearly well researched from the biographical point of view But the thing that really excites me for the rest is Bate's obvious scholarly and literary understanding of Hughes' poetry and why and how he wrote it Sadly I had to sit with my Collected Poems of Ted Hughes as Bate wasn't allowed to uote from Hughes' poetry directly except in a few careful sections using fair dealing He's paraphrasing This is a huge shame and the Hughes estate has made uite a blunder in refusing uotations Bate wanted to write a literary biography closely examinging the work with reference to the life I hope he hasn't been forced to flip it the other way and look too closely at the life which was sensationalReading deeper in to this biography and one of its great joys is Bate's understanding of Hughes' individual creativity and his lifelong fascination with the creative process I'm almost dreading the Plath marriagesuicide section to come; the creative process and how it evolved with Hughes is so carefully and intelligently discussed and described and I'm not a blind fan of Plath Her poetry was extraordinary but reading her journals I'm worn out at times bored by her and often find her vicioiusly nasty Hughes' letters on the other hand are always fascinating on so many subjects ok the occult stuff is a bit bonkers though mostly he kept this to himself but he's much illuminating and enjoyable to be with on the page than Plath I almost dread him meeting her in the biography about to get to thatContinues to be superb For once as I read I feel I'm getting to hear Ted's side of the story Though his love crimes do stack up considerably at least in this version you can appreciate what he was up against dealing with Sylvia Plath If you've lived through a marriage like theirs not the poetry collaborative part which was worthwhile for both but the personality disorders you'll appreciate why things went the way they did And I had always suspected Al Avarez who previously seemed to me to protest too hard on Plath's behalf thereby expressing his own sense of guilt had to do with it all than he let on though one revelation in this biography was a surprise but explains the rancour directed against Hughes even as recently as 2010 in The Guardian Hughes' literarypoetic life was hugely affected by his personal life and Bate does a terrific job of showing that inter relationship even though he's largely handicapped by being unable to uote from most of Hughes' writing A literary biography well worth reading for so many reasons and gets 5 stars from me because Bate has managed to overcome a lot obstacles and still make this a fascinating read

reader Ted Hughes

Download kindle ¶ Ted Hughes Ý é horticulturetrader ☆ [Epub] ❥ Ted Hughes By Jonathan Bate – Horticulturetrader.co.uk A captivating life of Ted Hughes told with great depth by the prize winning author of The Genius of Shakespeare and biographer of John Clare Jonathan BateTed Hughes Poet LaureatA captivating life of Ted Hughes told with great depth by the prize winning author of The Genius of Shakespeare and biographer of John Clare Jonathan BateTed Hughes Poet Laureate was one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century Bate's title 'the unauthorised life is a neat pun that encapsulates his approach on one hand it's referring to the extensive Hughes archive the place where Hughes is his unadorned and naked self; on the other it foregrounds the way in which the Hughes estate after agreeing to Bate's proposal withdrew their support for this book feeling that it was too intrusive It may well be but isn't that what we want from a biography? a sense of intimacy however voyeuristic? And to what extent is any author any person? ever truly 'unauthorised'? Even writing for ourselves in a private journal aren't we still telling a story subliminally aware of an ideal reader even if only especially? ourself? One of the things that comes over very strongly in this book is Hughes' mythologising of his own life and his life with women Plath of course but also Assia Wevill the second of his women to commit suicide through gas and this time superseding Plath by taking their daughter with her Hughes' own internalised story was that he was cursed a way of both amping up his own significance while also slipping away from any sense of blame That this psychic strategy didn't altogether work is one of the strands unpicked in Bate's narrative until the unblocking of the semi confessional Birthday Letters gave Hughes back a strong poetic voice Bate's own admiration empathy for and identification with Hughes is often to the fore and leads to some uncomfortable moments where he derides 'feminists' or stronger 'the feminists' as if this is an all encompassing category that speaks with a simple univocal voice and one which is implicitly female a position which would disturb me were I one of Bate's students or supervisees male or femaleNevertheless apart from some uibbles this is a strong and balanced biography that makes extensive use of the archives and Hughes' own poetry and one of its strengths is Bate's ability to read verse critically The early chapters taking in the Plath years is undoubtedly the most intense and engaging; the final chapters where Hughes becomes increasingly reactionary and Conservative aligning himself with Thatcher Michael Heseltine and Kenneth Baker perhaps a bit uncomfortable until Hughes redeems himself with Birthday Letters and Tales from Ovid Bate even manages to find some merit though he has to work pretty hard in Hughes' wildly eccentric Shakespeare and the Goddess of Complete Being a bit Robert Graves mixed with The da Vinci Code Overall a compulsively readable biography wherever you stand on Hughes