First published in 1967, this is a study which tackles the central problem of meaning, within Ezra Pound's The Cantos. It deals with the question of important critical issues, as well as of interpretation and understanding. Students of modern poetry will derive great benefit from this vigorous and lucid analysis of Pound's masterpiece. His finding is radical: that The Cantos is not a really a poem at all, but rather notes towards a poem. It is a collection of fragments of varying quality - some of extraordinary power and beauty - but in no sense formed into a work of art.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction 2. A Draft of XXX Cantos 1917-1930 3. Nuevo Mundo 1934 4. The Fifth Decad 1937 5. China and Adams 1940 6. The Pisan Cantos 1948 7. Rock-Drill 1955 8. Thrones 1959
'Mr Stock's "Study of Meaning" is not just another approach to the Cantos: it is a critical assessment of them. This is an ambitious undertaking and some will consider it premature; the results nevertheless are important and challenging.' - Review of English Studies
'One may dispute some of Mr Stock's fundamental metaphysical assumptions but can only admire and be grateful for a work which manifests such industry, learning and intellectual sensitivity - such real, substantial scholarship.' - Journal of American Studies