W.H. Auden's life and work were perhaps best explained and condensed in the words of Edward Mendelson, Auden's literary executor, when he remarked, '[Auden] grew up in a household in which the scientific inquiries of his father maintained an uneasy truce with the ritualized religion of his mother'. Indeed, science and religion were dominant themes in Auden's life and work, which for him were oftentimes one and the same. Auden was hailed as the new T.S. Eliot and as the 'coming' man, greatly influencing the future generations of angry young men with his thoughts on science, religion, and the relationship between the two. This book is an exhaustive reference to W.H. Auden. Those new to Auden and his writing will find the work a comprehensive introduction, while Auden scholars will appreciate the quick access it offers to the details of all his poems, plays, libretti, and other pieces of writing. It also includes entries on the people who were closest and most important to Auden, including fellow writers Christopher Isherwood, Stephen Spender, C. Day Lewis, Edward Upward, and T.S. Eliot, as well as significant events in his life, such as his arrival in America, his vision of agape, and his search in science and religion for answers to the deep questions of life and existence.
David Garrett Izzo is an emeritus professor of English who has published 16 books and 60 essays of literary scholarship, as well as three novels and two plays. He lives in Fuquay Varina, North Carolina.