In this book Professor Gelpi traces the emergence of American Modernist poetry as a reaction to, and outgrowth of, the Romantic ideology of the nineteenth century. He focuses on the remarkable generation of poets who came to maturity in the years of the First World War and whose works constitute the principal body of poetic Modernism in English. This large historical argument is developed through monographic chapters on the poets which include close readings of their major poems. Comprehensive in scope and subtle in its analysis, Gelpi's book promises to be one of the major studies of American poetry for years to come.
'The most vigorous, most consistently interesting study we have of twentieth-century American poetry in its relation to its Romantic percursors. Albert Gelpi's book is a powerful revisionist history of Modernism ... [His] breadth and range are remarkable.' Marjorie Perloff 'As distinguished a work as the author's The Tenth Muse ... The essays are unquestionable major critical and aesthetic statements on American poetry'. J. J. Patton, Choice