Larkin believed that deprivation is for him what daffodils were for Wordsworth. This is quite true. Deprivation is the dominant theme of his major collections The Less Deceived (1955), The Whitsun Wedding (1964), and High Windows (1974). It is also the main theme in his collection Grip of Light, written in 1947, but never published. But Larkin's deprivation is self-imposed as a path to transcendence, an escape from the consumer world, and an attempt to disengage art from society, and the self from others. It is neither a consequence of psychological disorder, nor of misogyny, narcissist pathology or the discomfort he feels with the shape of the personality he was given, as some critics argue, but rather a product of meditation on selfhood and the decline of post-war society and culture. Throughout this book, we will be examining such meditations and showing how they are reflected in Larkin's poetry and have a close relationship with the development of his poetic experience. By analyzing his early poems dating back even to the 30s, and comparing them with his later poems, we will see that there are coherent existential issues penetrating the poetry from the very beginning.
Larkin's controversial attitudes to women and sex should be understood within the context of those existentialist views expressed in his poetry, and not deduced from Larkin's private life. By analyzing some of his poems, particularly ‘High Windows’, which is key to understanding Larkin in this regard, and reading the personal letters relevant to the matter, his problems with women and sex can be seen as part of his larger struggle with life as an outsider. The outsider is always indecisive man, unable to act, only react.
This is a pioneering initiative with the purpose of increasing Mira’s participation in the local community in Leeds and Yorkshire.
We are planning to publish a series of books tackling issues related to; homelessness, refugees, young offenders, the elderly and other challenging matters facing the community.
Each book will cost about £5000 (including research and printing). 25% of the sale proceeds will go to the related charity and the rest will finance the publishing costs of other community books in the series.
We would be so grateful if you would consider making a financial donation to this worthwhile Project. We appreciate any type of kind donation as every penny is spent wisely and with complete commitment to achieving the end result. Alternatively, you could devote some of your time to help conduct a research or edit a book, if you have the necessary skills.
We need more volunteer book assessors to join our group.
If you are interested, please contact us on:
The Publisher’s Note...
Even in this thriving modern world, the book industry has pockets of ambiguity. This is evident from the exact point in which the author submits their manuscript, right up until the book reaches its rightful position on a consumer’s book shelf. The publishing process can be cloaked in vagueness which can cast a shadow of tension over what should be an illuminating experience.
According to the UNESCO, there is more than half a million titles published in English every year; these include 450,000 titles published in the USA and the UK alone. This staggering figure raises many questions, such as; how many of these titles is the ordinary reader actually aware of? Where and how can the reader find out about these books? How many of these titles are reviewed, whether in a local paper or in a periodic publication? What criteria is used when making a judgement to get a book reviewed or put on a bookshop shelf?
Many other questions in this respect are raised and discussed in the book clubs and readers/authors communities, but unfortunately no definitive answers are provided. This lack of communication and insufficient information can leave the author feeling frustrated and isolated. The process of publication should be an exciting one, a time when the author should feel safe and reassured by the publishing world.
A manager at a hugely successful mainstream chain of bookshops, once told me that out of the hundreds of thousands of books published each year only 80,000 are selected to appear on their prestigious bookshelves. Hence, this is the bookshop which has dominated the high street and consequently, the independent bookshops had been pushed away to the small towns and villages. The inevitable question that stands out is: ‘where have the other books disappeared to and how should we learn about them?’
The plethora of book production is a healthy sign in every economic, cultural and social sense. Therefore, both the publishers and the distributors have a duty of care; complete transparency and openness are essential. The publishing journey should inspire and satisfy the author whilst enriching the experience for the reader.
Each book should be treated on individual and equal merit. Each book has a voice; therefore each book has the right to be heard.
Mira Intelligent Read cic
Community Interest Company
Company No. 736594