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Modern English War Poetry$
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Tim Kendall

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199562022

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199562022.001.0001

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Fighting Back Over the Same Ground: Ted Hughes and War

Fighting Back Over the Same Ground: Ted Hughes and War

Chapter:
(p.197) 10 Fighting Back Over the Same Ground: Ted Hughes and War
Source:
Modern English War Poetry
Author(s):

Tim Kendall (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199562022.003.0011

This chapter explores the war poetry of Ted Hughes. War is the abiding concern of Hughes's poetry. As a teenager beginning to write in the early 1940s, he viewed contemporary conflict through the lens of the past, and the fear that his elder brother's war would prove as terrible as their father's became his ‘permanent preoccupation’. His post-war poetic maturity continued to perceive experience through that lens: Hughes characterizes his poems as ‘battleground[s]’ where his imagination, excited by ‘the war between vitality and death’, celebrates ‘the exploits of the warriors of either side’.

Keywords:   Ted Hughes, war poetry, war poets

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