In this acclaimed book, Professor Ricks argues for the importance of embarrassment in human life and for the value works of art which help us deal with embarrassment by recognizing and refining it. As a poet and a man, Keats was especially sensitive to, and morally intelligent about, embarrassment. This study demonstrates the particular direction of his insight and moral concern to acknowledge embarrassability and its involvement in important moral concerns.
"As criticism, Keats and Embarrassment seems to me a work of enormous brilliance. Mr Ricks can see more in a text, and what is more, persuade us to see it too, than anyone since William Empson..."--Bernard Bergonzi, The Observer
"Professor Ricks is perhaps the most tactful critical analyst of poetic language we now have. The new insight he offers us into the sensuous and intelligent organisation of the "Eve of St. Agnes," and the "Ode to Autumn," is startling, brilliant, and authoritative."--A.S. Byatt, Daily Telegraph