--On Saturday, January 26, 2002 4:03 PM +0100 INGELBIEN RAPHAEL
<[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> I don't see why personal remembrances or memoirs should escape the
> suspicion of being informed by particular agendas.
I don't either. I didn't say they did. I think they are. But I meant to
imply that a wide mix of viewpoints might give a sense of the man less, how
to say it, dictated by a current mythos, as Gordon's view clearly is. Grant
her her scholarship; more's the pity that she is the one interpreting it.
> As for the biographies, they may be biased, but one can hardly blame
> Ackroyd or Gordon for not having had direct access to the man himself
> (where would that leave, say, Keats or Tennyson biographers?). Moreover,
> Gordon in particular consulted and incorporated many personal sources in
> her own work, as any conscientious biographer would do.
Again, no quarrel here with sources or their lack. To state it baldly, I
don't think any amount of knowledge of materials or personal knowledge of
the poet could save Gordon from her prejudices. Ultimately the poetry
exposes the underpinnings of this sort of biography.