Selected Letters of Robert Penn Warren: New Beginnings and New Directions, 1953-1968

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LSU Press, May 1, 2008 - Reference - 616 pages

Volume four of the Selected Letters of Robert Penn Warren covers a crucial time of personal and professional rejuvenation in Warren's life. During the fifteen-year period spanned by this correspondence, he completed Brother to Dragons; Segregation: The Inner Conflict in the South; and Who Speaks for the Negro? As these titles suggest, these years were marked by Warren's immersion in American history and his maturing interest in race relations. They also saw his return to lyric poetry, after a ten-year hiatus, with the publication of the Pulitzer Prize--winning collection Promises. Along with seeing the completion of some of his most successful work, this period was a time of momentous change in Warren's life, including his move to Yale University; his marriage to his second wife, Eleanor; and the birth of his two children. As a chronicle of Warren's thoughts on his family, his work, his friends, the state of literary studies, and the culture at large, these letters are invaluable.Unlike many writers, Warren rarely drafted his correspondence with future readers and scholars in mind; he typically saved his prepared statements about the human condition and the state of the world for his poetry, fiction, and social commentary. His letters offer a candid and personal glimpse of Warren's relationships as well as his personal views on literature, politics, and social trends. Their recipients include Ralph Ellison, Allen Tate, Saul Bellow, Robert Lowell, Eudora Welty, and Louis Rubin, as well as Warren's editors, reviewers, collaborators, and other friends.Providing an unusually vivid and personal account of Warren's rich and fully realized life, these missives are equally revealing of his thoughts on the state of contemporary American culture during this dynamic time in American history.


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SELECTED LETTERS OF ROBERT PENN WARREN: Vol. I: The Apprentice Years, 1924-1934

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Ten years of essentially unrevealing letters from a formative period of the poet and novelist best known for All the King's Men and as the first Poet Laureate of the United States. This first in a ... Read full review

Selected letters of Robert Penn Warren

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These personal unpublished letters of Robert Penn Warren (1905-89) add immeasurably to what is already known about this respected and prolific author. As an undergraduate at Vanderbilt, Warren was ... Read full review



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Page vii - Condenses on them, on oiled wood, on metal. Dew whitens in darkness. I lie in my bed and think how, in darkness, the masts go white. The sound of the engine of the first fishing dory dies seaward. Soon In the inland glen wakes the dawn-dove. We must try To love so well the world that we may believe, in the end, in God.

About the author (2008)

Randy Hendricks is a professor of English at the University of West Georgia in Carrollton. He is the author of Lonelier than God: Robert Penn Warren and the Southern Exile and a collection of short stories, The Twelfth Year and Other Times.
James A. Perkins, professor of English and public relations at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania is the editor of The Cass Mastern Material: The Core of Robert Penn Warren's "All the King's Men", among other books. Together Hendricks and Perkins have edited For the Record: A Robert Drake Reader; the Selected Letters of Robert Penn Warren, volume three, and David Madden: A Writer for All Genres.
William Bedford Clark is a professor of English at Texas A&M University, the author of The American Vision of Robert Penn Warren, and the editor of volumes one and two of the Selected Letters of Robert Penn Warren.

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