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Northman: John Hewitt (1907-87)An Irish writer, his world, and his times$
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W. J. McCormack

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198739821

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198739821.001.0001

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Defending Barbara Hepworth before the Ratepayers; Collected Poems (1968)

Defending Barbara Hepworth before the Ratepayers; Collected Poems (1968)

Chapter:
(p.181) 8 Defending Barbara Hepworth before the Ratepayers; Collected Poems (1968)
Source:
Northman: John Hewitt (1907-87)
Author(s):

W. J. McCormack

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198739821.003.0010

The second half of Hewitt’s time in Coventry involved reassessments of his political attitude towards Ireland and his aesthetic preferences. He reviews his 1930s connections with Belfast in the light of altered behaviour on the Irish Left. He also comes to accept abstraction in contemporary art. The ‘metamorphosis’ exhibition of 1966 provides a platform for changing direction. In the aftermath, he defends Barbara Hepworth’s sculpture in prolonged dispute with Coventry’s Ratepayers’ Association. The Hewitts’ holiday in Greece, and a slim volume, Tesserae, is evidence of his extended poetic interests. Roberta’s health gave cause for concern, which did not deter her from active work for the local Labour Party.

Keywords:   John Hewitt, abstraction, Barbara Hepworth, ratepayers, Tesserae

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