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Guy Davenport (Guy Mattison Davenport) Biography

(1927–2005), (Guy Mattison Davenport), Motive and Method in the Cantos of Ezra Pound

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American short-story writer, critic, poet, and translator, born in Anderson, South Carolina, educated at Duke University, Merton College, Oxford, and Harvard. He became Professor of English at the University of Kentucky in 1963. Among his earlier publications is Motive and Method in the Cantos of Ezra Pound (1954), the first of a series of works on that author. The scope of his criticism is demonstrated in the essays collected in Geography of the Imagination (1981) and Every Force Evolves a Form (1987), which range between remote classical antiquity and the culture of the present day. Davenport's eclectically authoritative erudition is also reflected in his short stories, which are noted for their mannered originality of style and audaciously inventive narratives: collections include Tatlin! (1974), Da Vinci's Bicycle (1979), The Jules Verne Steam Balloon (1987), and The Drummer of the Eleventh North Devonshire Fusiliers (1990). Thasos and Ohio: Poems and Translations, 1950–1980 (1986) includes his versions of poetry by ancient Greek and modern European authors, among them Sappho, Anakreon, Rilke, and Cocteau, together with his own lucidly particular and metrically accomplished verse. Davenport is also an accomplished graphic artist and has worked as an illustrator of numerous books, including Hugh Kenner's The Stoic Comedians (1964) and Ronald Johnson's The Spirit Walks, the Rocks Will Talk (1969).

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