The average rating for Understanding the Black Mountain Poets based on 2 reviews is 3.5 stars.
|Review # 1 was written on 2010-11-02 00:00:00|
Helpful introduction to Olson, Creeley, Duncan and an idea of the energy behind them and what they're trying to accomplish. It helped fill out a symposium where much was said by people connected with BM, but flying over my head.
|Review # 2 was written on 2007-09-03 00:00:00|
I had forgotten how awful this study is. In part it's a product of its time, written before the boom in genuine Lovecraft scholarship in the 1970s. So it's what you would expect: overwritten lit-crit drivel, armchair psychoanalytical(-ish) nonsense, full of errors and grotesque misrepresentations on every page, coupled with pretentious prattle and sneering condescension that is as misinformed as it is arrogant. For example, Lévy ascribes Derleth's "Cthulhu Mythos" to Lovecraft, and he is obsessed with some sort of bizarre psychoanalytical connection he sees between "the oneiric and the fantastic," meaning dream and fantasy, which is why he describes Lovecraft as nihilistic, neurotic, anguished, hopeless, abnormal, pitiable, paranoid, obsessive, having a "sick mind," on and on, you get the picture - the upshot being that the Lévy version of Lovecraft was a raving lunatic who only avoided suicide by desperately escaping into childish dreams. How it is possible to read Lovecraft's fiction and letters and come away with such a disastrously wrongheaded picture of the man himself is more than I know. This lamentable misfire is nothing but a curiosity now, a minor footnote in the annals of Lovecraft scholarship.
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