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W. B. Yeats and His Poems. William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) An Irish poet, drew wisdom and inspiration from the ancient culture of Ireland. In his later.

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Presentation on theme: "W. B. Yeats and His Poems. William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) An Irish poet, drew wisdom and inspiration from the ancient culture of Ireland. In his later."— Presentation transcript:

1 W. B. Yeats and His Poems

2 William Butler Yeats ( ) An Irish poet, drew wisdom and inspiration from the ancient culture of Ireland. In his later years he found a metaphysical approach to poetry and wrote on the great, eternal subjects of time and change, love and age, life and art ( “ The Wild Swans at Coole ” ). There is profound beauty in his poetry. An Irish poet, drew wisdom and inspiration from the ancient culture of Ireland. In his later years he found a metaphysical approach to poetry and wrote on the great, eternal subjects of time and change, love and age, life and art ( “ The Wild Swans at Coole ” ). There is profound beauty in his poetry.

3 Acknowledged as one of the greatest poets in the English language, Yeats ’ s work covered 50 years. Acknowledged as one of the greatest poets in the English language, Yeats ’ s work covered 50 years. He was deep-rooted in Irish culture with its folklore, legends, music and magic, from which he draw wisdom and inspiration and he wrote about the traditions and history of the Irish nation. (He was active in the Irish struggle for independence and the founding of a national Irish theatre). He was deep-rooted in Irish culture with its folklore, legends, music and magic, from which he draw wisdom and inspiration and he wrote about the traditions and history of the Irish nation. (He was active in the Irish struggle for independence and the founding of a national Irish theatre).

4 Born in Dublin influenced by the currents of Irish nationalism Born in Dublin influenced by the currents of Irish nationalism With a fellow Irishman Oscar Wilde he organized the Rhymer ’ s club With a fellow Irishman Oscar Wilde he organized the Rhymer ’ s club In 1899 fell desperately in love with Maud Gonne a beautiful actress and passionate Irish nationalist who refused to marry him and she is the subject of most of his love p In 1899 fell desperately in love with Maud Gonne a beautiful actress and passionate Irish nationalist who refused to marry him and she is the subject of most of his love p

5 Yeats actively participated the movement but disapprove the bloodshedding together with a noble woman and playwriter found the Irish National Theatre in Dublin When Ireland finally won its true independence in 1922 he was appointed a senator in the following year he won the Nobel Prize of literature Yeats actively participated the movement but disapprove the bloodshedding together with a noble woman and playwriter found the Irish National Theatre in Dublin When Ireland finally won its true independence in 1922 he was appointed a senator in the following year he won the Nobel Prize of literature

6 His poetry was characterized by disillusion, bitter satire, strong symbolism and the combination of colloquial and formal language. There is profound beauty in his poetry. His poetry was characterized by disillusion, bitter satire, strong symbolism and the combination of colloquial and formal language. There is profound beauty in his poetry.

7 He wrote 26 plays and 11 volumes of poetry but his reputation rests on his 50 years of poetic career which falls roughly into 5 phases of about one decade each. He wrote 26 plays and 11 volumes of poetry but his reputation rests on his 50 years of poetic career which falls roughly into 5 phases of about one decade each.

8 The Three Periods of His Work 1.During the 1980 ’ s he wrote chiefly in the tradition of romanticism a leading member of the Aesthetic movement 1.During the 1980 ’ s he wrote chiefly in the tradition of romanticism a leading member of the Aesthetic movement

9 2. his second period was influenced by the Irish nationalist movement and his passion of Maud Gonne worked with the Irish National Theatre attempting to develop an Irish cultural revival to complement the political movement 2. his second period was influenced by the Irish nationalist movement and his passion of Maud Gonne worked with the Irish National Theatre attempting to develop an Irish cultural revival to complement the political movement

10 3.by the second decade of the 20thc Yeats no longer a romantic influenced by the modernist movement 3.by the second decade of the 20thc Yeats no longer a romantic influenced by the modernist movement 4. the fourth period was the greatest of his p career in his sixties he attained full maturity as a realist-symbolist-metaphysical p with an uncanny( 离奇的 ) power over words and symbols, summing up in his poems many of his lifelong ideas. 4. the fourth period was the greatest of his p career in his sixties he attained full maturity as a realist-symbolist-metaphysical p with an uncanny( 离奇的 ) power over words and symbols, summing up in his poems many of his lifelong ideas.

11 His early poetry was marked by dreamy romanticism with clarity, imagery and musicality. In his later years he found a metaphysical and French simplistic approach to poetry and wrote on the great, eternal subject of time and change, love and age, life and art. His early poetry was marked by dreamy romanticism with clarity, imagery and musicality. In his later years he found a metaphysical and French simplistic approach to poetry and wrote on the great, eternal subject of time and change, love and age, life and art.

12 Yeats believed that all history, and life follows a circular, spiral pattern consisting of long cycles which repeat themselves over and over on different levels, so symbols like winding stairs, spinning tops, gyres and spirals are frequent and important in his poems Yeats believed that all history, and life follows a circular, spiral pattern consisting of long cycles which repeat themselves over and over on different levels, so symbols like winding stairs, spinning tops, gyres and spirals are frequent and important in his poems

13 Analysis of The Second Coming See the textbook See the textbook

14 Question What does “ gyre ” mean in this poem? What does “ gyre ” mean in this poem? What does the line “ things fall apart; the center cannot hold ” mean? What does the line “ things fall apart; the center cannot hold ” mean? What do the “ a shape with lion body and the head of a man ” and the “ rough beast ” refer to? What do the “ a shape with lion body and the head of a man ” and the “ rough beast ” refer to?

15 Discussion At the beginning of the 21st c, what do you think of this poem? At the beginning of the 21st c, what do you think of this poem?

16 Yeats and Eliot had great influence upon modern English literature. Their principles and wiring practice were a revolt against the imprecise language and sentimental emotions of the Victorian poets. This revolt led to the modernist movement in literature.. Yeats and Eliot had great influence upon modern English literature. Their principles and wiring practice were a revolt against the imprecise language and sentimental emotions of the Victorian poets. This revolt led to the modernist movement in literature..

17 Three influences of modern poetry 1. Imagism 1. Imagism 2. Metaphysical poets 2. Metaphysical poets 3. French symbolist poetry 3. French symbolist poetry

18 Main traits of modern poetry 1. Direct treatment of things 1. Direct treatment of things 2. Freer metrical movement (these two from Imagism) 2. Freer metrical movement (these two from Imagism) 3. High degree of intellectual complexity 3. High degree of intellectual complexity 4. Symbolism 4. Symbolism 5. Close to conversation (colloquial, slang) 5. Close to conversation (colloquial, slang) 6. Irony and puns 6. Irony and puns 7. International and urban themes 7. International and urban themes

19 In summary ‘ the remarkable career of W.B.Yeats, stretching across the whole modern period, showed how a truly great p can at the same time reflect the varying development of his age and maitain an unmistakably individual accent …. Yet he is always Yeats, unique and inimitable — without doubt the great English speaking p of his age. ’ ---from Wang ’ s book ‘ the remarkable career of W.B.Yeats, stretching across the whole modern period, showed how a truly great p can at the same time reflect the varying development of his age and maitain an unmistakably individual accent …. Yet he is always Yeats, unique and inimitable — without doubt the great English speaking p of his age. ’ ---from Wang ’ s book


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