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    Blake (Paperback) By (author) Peter Ackroyd

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    DescriptionPoet, painter, engraver and visionary, Blake's was a radical spirit fired by genius. Yet his life has remained an enigma. In this magnificent biography Peter Ackroyd discloses the true nature of William Blake's life and art.


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  • Full bibliographic data for Blake

    Title
    Blake
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Peter Ackroyd
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 464
    Width: 129 mm
    Height: 198 mm
    Thickness: 31 mm
    Weight: 392 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780749391768
    ISBN 10: 0749391766
    Classifications

    BIC subject category V2: DSBF, DSC
    BIC E4L: BIO
    BIC subject category V2: BG
    BIC language qualifier (language as subject) V2: 2AB
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: T4.1
    DC20: 821.7
    BIC subject category V2: DSBD
    BIC time period qualifier V2: 3JF, 3JH
    BIC subject category V2: AGB
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 15800
    BISAC V2.8: POE005020, BIO000000
    BIC subject category V2: 2AB, 3JH, 3JF
    LC subject heading: ,
    Illustrations note
    24pp plates, b&w illustrations, b&w photographs, colour photographs
    Publisher
    VINTAGE
    Imprint name
    VINTAGE
    Publication date
    03 January 1998
    Publication City/Country
    London
    Author Information
    Peter Ackroyd is the author of biographies of Ezra Pound, T.S. Eliot, Dickens, Blake, Wilkie Collins and Thomas More and of the acclaimed non-fiction bestsellers London: The Biography and Thames: Sacred River. Peter Ackroyd is an award-winning novelist, as well as a broadcaster, biographer, poet and historian. He has won the Whitbread Biography Award, the Royal Society of Literature's William Heinemann Award, the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, the Guardian Fiction Prize, the Somerset Maugham Award and the South Bank Prize for Literature. He holds a CBE for services to literature.
    Review quote
    "Marvellous...deeply moving and radiant with detail... What makes Ackroyd so exceptional among biographers is the range and beauty of his knowledge.This is a book to go out and buy at once" Observer "Exhilarating...has all the hypnotic power and psychological intensity of a dream-fiction" Daily Telegraph "Glowing and engaged...will send many readers back to the poems enriched" -- John Carey Sunday Times "Taut, lucid and intelligent...will surely stand as a classic of the genre" Harpers & Queen
    Review text
    Ackroyd's biography of William Blake represents an achievement of composite method fully in the poet's own spirit - it's a work so sensitive to its subject, it seems to have conjured him from the beyond. Scholar, workaday artisan, mystic, and social critic, Blake (1757-1827) excelled at poetry, engraving, and painting. Yet rather than spread his multifacteed genius through diverse pursuits, Blake concentrated it into his homemade books - famous now, but noted in his day only as oddities. For these sui generis productions, Blake printed pages where script and illustration flow side by side: now commenting on this world, now offering visions of others. Novelist and biographer Ackroyd (The Trial of Elizabeth Cree, 1995; Dickens, 1991; etc.) again shows himself to be an adept literary critic and historian: His explications of many of Blake's works, from widely known lyrics like "The Tyger" to hermetic epics like "The Four Zoas," unfold into detailed panoramas of England as Blake knew it. He captures the difficulties that the radical Blake faced in squaring his art training at the prestigious Royal Academy with his humble artisanal background. The blunt, "gothic," outline forms of Raphael and Durer, out of fashion at the time, provided Blake with an alternative tradition with which to affiliate himself; such contemporaries as John Flaxman and Henry Fuseli provided moral support. Above all, Ackroyd stresses Blake's intimate relation to his London environs and to the crises of war and industrialization that beset Britain during his life. While he argues that Blake was often caught up in hallucinatory waking visions, Ackroyd weighs against any diagnosis of mental illness the justice of Blake's claim that he was gifted to see through and beyond the insane upheavals of his times. Not the least part of Ackroyd's accomplishment is to have limited himself to 416 pages - enough, and (to paraphrase Blake), assuredly not too much. (Kirkus Reviews)