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--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.

 Cheers,
 Ken Armstrong