Cover image for Ezra Pound in London and Paris, 1908-1925
Ezra Pound in London and Paris, 1908-1925
Wilhelm, James J.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
University Park : Pennsylvania State University Press, [1990]

Physical Description:
xvi, 383 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS3531.O82 Z893 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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This book systematically traces Pound's career from his arrival in London in 1908 to his departure from Paris in 1924, emphasizing his activities but also describing his writings and relating them to his life. Avoiding either vitriolic condemnation or pious hagiography, Wilhelm examines Pound's strengths, especially his influence on other artists (including painters and sculptors); he also deals with Pound's weaknesses, as manifested particularly in his stormy encounters with people like Amy Lowell.

Unlike recent popular biographies, this work offers the reader much new material about Pound's life, notably his amatory adventures with Nancy Cunard and Iseult MacBride Stuart, his musical relations with Katherine Ruth Heyman and Walter Morse Rummel, and his friendships with artists such as Francis Picabia, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, and Wyndham Lewis. The Paris years from 1921 to 1924 are presented in a novel way through the dynamic interplay in Pound's life-both as a diary listing important events and as a series of constellations of artists, musicians, writers, and lovers.

The book concludes with Pound's eventual disenchantment with Parisian life, his writing of his first Cantos, and his removal to Mussolini's Italy, a land that would greatly influence his tragic later years.

Author Notes

J. J. Wilhelm is Professor of Comparative Literature at Rutgers University and author of several works on poetry and Pound, including The American Roots of Ezra Pound (1985) and Ezra Pound in London and Paris, 1908-1925 (Penn State, 1990).

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Wilhelm, a widely acknowledged expert on the life and work of Ezra Pound, has written a valuable guide to the crucial years of Pound's development. Wilhelm relates Pound's many activities to the larger theme of how modernism in all its forms came out of the artistic ferment that was London and Paris in the early years of the century. Especially useful is the diarylike chronicle that makes up Chapter 19. Here Wilhelm takes the reader through a virtual day-by-day account of Pound's life from January 1921 to January 1925. A bibliography and a few illustrations are included. Although Hugh Kenner's The Pound Era (CH, May'72) may be more useful to the average undergraduate, Wilhelm's book will be of great use to the advanced student. -D. A. Barton, California State University, Long Beach