Studium anglistiky na KAA UPOL

Larkin, Philip. (1922 - 1985).

W o r k

F i c t i o n :

< influenced by Thomas Hardy: preoccupied with loneliness, age, and death

Jill (1946):

- set in an Oxford forced into egalitarianism by the war

- anticipated the campus novel of ‘The Angry Young Men’

P o e t r y :

- the dominant figure of ‘The Movement’

- analyses the welfare-state world of post-imperial Britain

- takes an empirical, sceptical, and stoic attitude

- views human history and human experience as no occasion for rejoicing

- alienates himself from both an uncomfortable past and a cheerless present

The North Ship (1945):

- his first collection, strongly influenced by W. B. Yeats

The Less Deceived (1955):

- influenced by Thomas Hardy who seems to be echoed even in the title

> “Church Going”:

- a ‘bored, uninformed’ narrator with an ‘awkward reverence’ in a church

- a meditation on a future with religion shrunk to a fear of death

The Whitsun Weddings (1964):

- a sharp ear for the inflexions of his own age

- a deliberately provocative frankness

- the title poem portrays his contemporary England of false cheer, cheap fashions, and joyless wedding parties

> “An Arundel Tomb”:

- perhaps his most delicate and lyrical poem

- fuses history, time, uneasiness about death, and human hope into new wholes

- a medieval funerary monument to a husband and wife shows them lying side by side and hand in hand x time both marred the sculptural image and altered the way to read and interpret all the images

High Windows (1974):

- manifests his admiration for D. H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover

- enjoys his private penchant for ‘four-letter words’

- the title poem is marked by the colloquial (= offensive) language stressing its contemporaneity


(Photo: Channel 4).

  • Author

    Philip Arthur Larkin. (1922 - 1985). British.
  • Work

    Poet. Novelist. The leading figure of The Movement.
  • Genres

    Modern poetry and fiction.


Abrams, Meyer Howard, ed. The Norton Anthology of English Literature. New York: W. W. Norton, 1993.

Barnard, Robert. Stručné dějiny anglické literatury. Praha: Brána, 1997.

Baugh, Albert C. ed. A Literary History of England. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1967.

Coote, Stephen. The Penguin Short History of English Literature. London: Penguin, 1993.

Sampson, George. The Concise Cambridge History of English Literature. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1946.

Sanders, Andrew. The Short Oxford History of English Literature. New York: Clarendon Press, 1994.


"They fuck you up, your mum and dad. / They may not mean to, but they do. / They fill you with the faults they had / And add some extra, just for you.

From "This Be The Verse" (1971).


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