Alienation and Affirmation in the Poetry of Philip Larkin

Barry Spurr


In Larkin's first collection of poems, The North Ship, published in 1945, he anticipates certain themes and features of style which he was to bring to maturity in The Less Deceived (1955), The Whitsun Weddings (1964) and High Windows (1974). These youthful lyrics are unashamedly subjective. Reacting against the poetic school of impersonal objectivity and cerebral difficulty initiated by T. S. Eliot, Larkin strives to evoke the simplicities of human emotion in several song-like verses.

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