Wilfred Owen

An Illustrated Life

Jane Potter

Wilfred Owen
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Jane Potter

Distributed for Bodleian Library, University of Oxford

With a Preface by Jon Stallworthy
144 pages | 60 color plates | 6 x 8 | © 2014
Cloth $25.00 ISBN: 9781851243945 Published September 2014 For sale in North America only
Wilfred Owen is the “Poet of Pity,” whose realistic portrayals of war gave voice to the soldier wounded, captured, or killed—not just in the Great War but in every war since, so great is the evocative power of his work. Although he saw only five poems published during his lifetime, Owen left behind a wealth of letters and poetry that together form a powerful legacy.
This generously illustrated book tells the story of Owen’s life and work, from his birth in 1893 to his tragic death just one week before the signing of the armistice that would end the war. The shocking realism of poems such as “Strange Meeting” and the angry disillusionment of “Anthem for Doomed Youth” reveal Owen’s transformation from a romantic youth steeped in the poetry of Keats to a mature soldier awakened to the horrors of the Western Front.
Drawing on numerous manuscripts, artifacts, and family photographs, this book gives a comprehensive view of the relationship between the poet’s lived experience and his writing that will appeal equally to both those well-versed in Owen’s work and those seeking a well-researched, accessible introduction.
1. 1893-1910
Childhood and young adulthood
Oswestry, Birkenhead, Shrewsbury
2. 1911-1915
The search for a profession
Dunsden, Bordeaux, The Pyrenees, Mérignac
3. 1915-1916
Enlistment and training
London, Romford, Aldershot
4. 1917
Active service and shell shock
The Somme and Craiglockhart
5. 1918
The last year
Ripon and France
6. Owen’s afterlife
Publication, critical reception, canonization
List of poems
Picture Credits
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