The Necessary Angel: Essays on Reality and the Imagination (Paperback)

Essays on Reality and the Imagination

By Wallace Stevens

Vintage, 9780394702780, 192pp.

Publication Date: February 12, 1965

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Description

In this collection of essays, consummate poet Wallace Stevens reflects upon his art. His aim is not to produce a work of criticism or philosophy, or a mere discussion of poetic technique. As he explains in his introduction, his ambition in these various pieces, published in different times and places, aimed higher than that, in the direction of disclosing "poetry itself, the naked poem, the imagination manifesting itself in its domination of words." Stevens proves himself as eloquent and scintillating in prose as in poetry, as he both analyzes and demonstrates the essential act of repossessing reality through the imagination.


About the Author

Wallace Stevens was born in Reading, Pennsylvania, in 1879 and died in Hartford, Connecticut, in 1955. Harmonium, his first volume of poems, was published in 1923, and was followed by Ideas of Order (1936), The Man with the Blue Guitar (1937), Parts of a World (1942), Transport to Summer (1947), The Auroras of Autumn (1950), The Necessary Angel (a volume of essays, 1951), The Collected Poems of Wallace Stevens (1954), and Opus Posthumous (1957; revised and corrected in 1989). Stevens was awarded the Bollingen Prize in Poetry of the Yale University Library for 1949. He twice won the National Book Award in Poetry and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry in 1955. From 1916 on, he was associated with the Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company, of which he became vice president in 1934.


Praise For The Necessary Angel: Essays on Reality and the Imagination

"In this book, the first collection of his prose works, he accounts in scintillating language for the peculiarly modern and sometimes deliquescent fervor that has prompted his poems. Few poets have written so characteristically about their own craft." --Perspective --U.S.A.

"These are rich essays, simply constructed yet richly and elegantly written." -- Hayden Carruth, The Nation

"The most welcome attribute of the book is its humane good sense, equally manifest whether Stevens is discussing a desolate Pennsylvania churchyard. Plato's images or the personalities of those who prefer a drizzle in Venice to a hard rain in Hartford.''' --New Republic

"It is a rare pleasure to breathe the atmosphere of confidence and wholeness which distinguishes the world of Wallace Stevens. Here we are refreshed by certainty without fragmentariness, by joyous possibilities without dishonesty. Here we find a moral and philosophical center through which reality may be repossessed and re-created with each new poetic act." -- C. Roland Wagner, The Hudson Review

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