The Demon and the Angel (Paperback)

Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration

By Edward Hirsch

Mariner Books, 9780156027441, 348pp.

Publication Date: April 1, 2003

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (3/1/2002)

List Price: 19.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


A work of art, whether a painting, a dance, a poem, or a jazz composition, can be admired in its own right. But how does the artist actually create his or her work? What is the source of an artist's inspiration? What is the force that impels the artist to set down a vision that becomes art?
In this groundbreaking book, Edward Hirsch explores the concept of duende, that mysterious, highly potent power of creativity that results in a work of art. With examples ranging from Federico García Lorca's wrestling with darkness as he discovered the fountain of words within himself to Martha Graham's creation of her most emotional dances, from the canvases of Robert Motherwell to William Blake's celestial visions, Hirsch taps into the artistic imagination and explains, in terms illuminating and emotional, how different artists respond to the power and demonic energy of creative impulse.

About the Author

EDWARD HIRSCH is a celebrated poet and peerless advocate for poetry. A MacArthur fellow, he has published nine books of poems and five books of prose. He has received numerous awards and fellowships, including a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, the Rome Prize, a Pablo Neruda Presidential Medal of Honor, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award for Literature. He serves as president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and lives in Brooklyn.

Praise For The Demon and the Angel: Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration


"Unique, exhilarating, and virtuosic."--Booklist


"A lovely book, full of joy and wisdom."--The Baltimore Sun

"A wise, exhilarating book; Edward Hirsch is the most endearing of guides to the ecstasies of reading poetry."--Susan Sontag