W.H. Auden (1907-1973) was one of the twentieth-century's greatest poets - and also one of the most engaged. As he struggled to make sense of the rise of fascism, two world wars, and industrialized murder, his focus turned to the poet's responsibility in the face of unthinkable horrors. How does a poet begin to address these subjects? In this episode, Jacke talks to Professor Susannah Young-ah Gottlieb, author of the new book Auden and the Muse of History, about Auden's use of the past to help him come to grips with the present.
Susannah Young-ah Gottlieb is Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literary Studies, Northwestern University. She is the author of Regions of Sorrow: Anxiety and Messianism in Hannah Arendt and W.H. Auden (Stanford, 2003) and editor of Hannah Arendt: Reflections on Literature and Culture (Stanford, 2007).
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