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Pisan Cantos


Ezra Pound's The Pisan Cantos was written in 1945, while the poet was being held in an American military detention center near Pisa, Italy, as a result of his pro-Fascist wartime broadcasts to America on Radio Rome. Imprisoned for some weeks in a wire cage open to the elements, Pound suffered a nervous collapse from the physical and emotional strain. Out of the agony of his own inferno came the eleven cantos that became the sixth book of his modernist epic, The Cantos, themselves conceived as a Divine Comedy for our time. The Pisan Cantos were published in 1948 by New Directions and in the following year were awarded the Bollingen Prize for poetry by the Library of Congress. The honor came amid violent controversy, for the dark cloud of treason still hung over Pound, incarcerated in St. Elizabeths Hospital for the Criminally Insane. Yet there is no doubt that The Pisan Cantos displays some of his finest and most affecting writing, marking an elegaic turn to the personal while synthesizing the philosophical and economic political themes of his previous cantos. They are now being published for the first time as a separate paperback, in a fully annotated edition prepared by Richard Sieburth, who also contributes a thoroughgoing introduction, making Pound's master-work fully accessible to students and general readers. Hide synopsis

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Reviews of Pisan Cantos

Overall customer rating: 5.000
Henry G

Good Read But Difficult

by Henry G on Oct 14, 2010

I love reading poetry and have always heard about the writings of Ezra Pound. His THE PISAN CANTOS was written while Pound was imprissoned in Italy by the United States. It is a very hard book to understand for me. I get a little help from a friend and I know there is a companion book that explains everything. But The challange for me is the fun part. Did that mean that? Did he mean this? It's fun and I do recommend this book and author to anyone who loves poetry. I have heard that all his writings are meant to be difficult, What a challenge. What an author!

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