The Book Club

A history of poetry with Professor John Carey

35 min listen

In This Episode

This week’s Book Club podcast features one of the great wise men of the literary world: Professor John Carey – emeritus Merton Professor of English at Oxford, author of authoritative books on Milton, Donne and Dickens as well as the subject-transforming broadside The Intellectuals and the Masses. (He’s also lead book reviewer for a publication we shall call only the S****y T***s, but we pass over that.) In his new book, A Little History of Poetry, he sweeps us with his usual elan from the Epic of Gilgamesh to the backyard of Les Murray. I asked him (among other things) what constitutes poetry, why ‘Goosey Goosey Gander’ has it all, what he discovered in his researches, and why the so-called New Criticism got old.


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