Poetics and Praxis, Understanding and Imagination: The Collected Essays of O.B. Hardison, Jr
Whether O. B. Hardison Jr. (1928-1990) wrote about government's responsibility to the arts and humanities, film adaptations of Shakespeare's plays, Dadaist poetry, or modern and postmodern design and architecture, his chosen form was the essay. Showcasing Hardison's mastery of the essay's power to instruct, persuade, and provoke, the twenty-five selections in this volume range from his earliest works to those completed but still unpublished at the time of his death.
The selections reflect the many facets of Hardison's remarkably crowded and productive life and career. Once lionized on the cover of Time magazine, which praised him as one of America's "great teachers" and a "Renaissance man," Hardison was widely known and published as a poet, critic, scholar, administrator, and social and cultural observer. He served as president of the Shakespeare Association of America and Renaissance Society of America, and, perhaps most impressive of his many honors and accomplishments, as the third director of the Folger Shakespeare Library. Hardison transformed the Folger from a scholarly retreat into an active research center and established fellowships, residencies, and The Folger Institute. In addition, the Folger grew into a prominent national cultural center that featured musical and dramatic performing groups, a poetry reading series, and an art gallery.
Poetics and Praxis, Understanding and Imagination is both a tribute to the essay and to one of its most distinguished modern practitioners, as well as an important survey of humanistic concerns in literature and the arts over the past three decades.
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In Praise of the Essay
Tudor Humanism and Surreys Translation of the Aeneid
Perspective and Form in Petrarch
Amoretti and the Dolce Stil Novo
Logic Versus the Slovenly World in Shakespearean Comedy
The Dramatic Triad in Hamlet
Myth and History in King Lear
Miltons On Time and Its Scholastic Background
In Medias Res in Paradise Lost
Politics and Beauty
Dada the Poetry of Nothing and the Modern World
Great Walls and Running Fences
At the Top of the Masthead
Notes and References