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éminence grise

a quarterly journal devoted to poetry and criticism, founded in 1959 by William Cookson. Ezra Pound, with whom Cookson had corresponded since 1955, was the éminence grise behind the magazine and its stated policy of ‘communication between isolated outposts’ of poetic activity; its interest in foreign poetry was also made clear and early editions featured translations of work by poets from various parts of Europe and elsewhere. Cookson's belief that ‘our poetry is to be revitalized … by a study of modern American poetry’ was reflected in the attention given to American verse; Pound, W. C. Williams, Louis Zukofsky, Robert Lowell, and Theodore Roethke are among the American poets whose work has been featured and to whom the magazine has devoted special issues. British authors in whom particular interest has been taken include Basil Bunting, David Jones, Hugh MacDiarmid, and Geoffrey Hill. Special issues have also been produced on particular aspects of poetic technique, notably the ‘Rhythm Issue’ for Autumn/Winter 1972/3; this took the form of a symposium with W. H. Auden, Donald Davie, Thom Gunn, George MacBeth, and Charles Tomlinson among the participants. In 1971 Peter Dale became Cookson's associate editor; their occasional divergences of opinion have added vigour and balance to the journal, which remains one of the foremost in its field.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: 110A Piccadilly to Nelson Algren Biography