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The Cambridge Companion to William Blake


Part of Cambridge Companions to Literature

Morris Eaves, Aileen Ward, Joseph Viscomi, Susan Wolfson, David Bindman, Saree Makdisi, Robert Ryan, Jon Mee, David Simpson, Nelson Hilton, Andrew Lincoln, Mary Lynn Johnson, Robert N. Essick, Alexander Gourlay
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  • Date Published: January 2003
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521786775

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About the Authors
  • Poet, painter, and engraver William Blake died in 1827 in obscure poverty with few admirers. The attention paid today to his remarkable poems, prints, and paintings would have astonished his contemporaries. Admired for his defiant, uncompromising creativity, he has become one of the most anthologized and studied writers in English and one of the most studied and collected British artists. His urge to cast words and images into masterpieces of revelation has left us with complex, forceful, extravagant, some times bizarre works of written and visual art that rank among the greatest challenges to plain understanding ever created. This Companion aims to provide guidance to Blake's work in fresh and readable introductions: biographical, literary, art historical, political, religious, and bibliographical. Together with a chronology, guides to further reading, and glossary of terms, they identify the key points of departure into Blake's multifarious world and work.

    • Indispensable guide to the full range of the work of William Blake
    • Provides guides to further reading and a glossary of Blake's names, words and concepts
    • Amply illustrated to show the interaction between Blake's written and visual work
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Like other volumes in the Cambridge Companions to Literature series, this collection of essays is designed to be useful for a broad academic audience. It maintains the normally high standards of editing, writing, and scholarship that characterize the series. Eaves provides the introduction, which discusses the difficulties, methods, and rewards of reading Blake's poetical and pictorial works.' T. Hoagwood, Texas A&M University

    ' … the present volume is uniformly excellent … admirable and reliable … we are enlightened, even inspired, by the ample contents of these deeply illuminating and reflective pages.' Reference Reviews

    '… the seasoned Blake scholar will find here an up-to-date and well-informed vade-mecum of current scholarly trends which can be put to good use in the classroom, and can also serve the purpose of a handy work of reference … succinct, erudite, and often enlightening … keen and stylishly written analysis … provides a veritable hitch-hiker's guide to the galaxies that are opening up in Blake's writings, a guide which will stand the test of teaching Blake in more than the first decade of the new century.' BARS Bulletin & Review

    'The Companion ensures Blake's continual success in teaching lessons in electric mystical thought, in bringing to mind issues of form, perception and creativity in poetic writing … this is a carefully edited volume offering new and valuable insights into Blake's life and circle as well as into his ways of producing a wide range of innovative techniques in the field of engraving and illustration …'. Anglia Zeitschrift für Englische Philologie

    'The Cambridge Companion is not for casual reference, but should make a very useful introduction for serious readers.' Essays in Criticism

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    Product details

    • Date Published: January 2003
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521786775
    • length: 328 pages
    • dimensions: 260 x 109 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.52kg
    • contains: 36 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction Morris Eaves
    Part I. Perspectives:
    2. William Blake and his circle Aileen Ward
    3. Illuminated printing Joseph Viscomi
    4. Blake's language Susan Wolfson
    5. Blake as painter David Bindman
    6. The political aesthetic of the illuminated books Saree Makdisi
    7. Blake and religion Robert Ryan
    8. Blake's politics in history Jon Mee
    9. Blake and Romanticism David Simpson
    Part II. Blake's Works:
    10. Blake's early works Nelson Hilton
    11. From America to The Four Zoas Andrew Lincoln
    12. Milton and its contexts, 1800–1810 Mary Lynn Johnson
    13. Jerusalem and Blake's final works Robert N. Essick
    Guides to Further Reading
    Glossary of terms, names, and concepts Alexander Gourlay.

  • Editor

    Morris Eaves, University of Rochester, New York
    Morris Eaves is Professor of English at the University of Rochester, New York and author of several books and articles on William Blake.


    Morris Eaves, Aileen Ward, Joseph Viscomi, Susan Wolfson, David Bindman, Saree Makdisi, Robert Ryan, Jon Mee, David Simpson, Nelson Hilton, Andrew Lincoln, Mary Lynn Johnson, Robert N. Essick, Alexander Gourlay

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