An overview of the work by william butler yeats an irish poet

Edit Yeats was born and educated in Dublin, but spent his childhood in co. He studied poetry in his youth and from an early age was fascinated by both Irish legends and the occult. Those topics feature in the first phase of his work, which lasted roughly until the turn of the 20th century.

An overview of the work by william butler yeats an irish poet

Yeats William Butler Yeats ; name pronounced "Yates" is one of the most significant poets in the English language of the twentieth century.

W. B. Yeats - Wikipedia

In fact his career spans both the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries and one of the remarkable things about him as a writer is the breadth and variety of his work, as well as his continued development as a poet during his life. Few poets continue to produce work which maintains their highest level of achievement through into old age, but Yeats is one of these, and many would argue that the work of his later years represents a more significant achievement than that of his earlier years, though this is not to compare like with like.

Though his reputation rests primarily upon his lyric poetry, he was also a dramatist, story-writer and essayist, and he was associated intimately with the cultural and political life of his country, Ireland. When he was a young man, Ireland was a part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland but there had been a growing movement for independence through the nineteenth century.

At the same time he was developing his interest in the supernatural and occultism, first through the Theosophical Society and later through the Golden Dawn. In his later years, he was drawn towards some of the elements of fascism, notably its often mystical nationalism and inherent litism, but he never became involved in the movement as such.

A recurrent symbol is that of the Rose, in which Ireland, Maud and vision meet along with other elements. For him symbols were more than a poetic tool, tapping into a vast reservoir of collective experience, which he termed at various stages the Great Memory, Anima Mundi the World Souland the Record, none of which is, however, quite the same as the other.

Among the many factors involved, three stand out: Through Pound he was brought into contact with what became known as modernism, as well as Oriental art and thought. Over five or six years the Yeatses engaged in frequent sessions, where WBY would ask questions and, while Georgie was in a trance-like state, her hand would write answers see below.

These answers were attributed to a variety of controlling spirits and, as the script built up, it outlined a complex, esoteric system of thought, centred on cycles of change, which WBY spent years turning into a formal exposition, A Vision.

Although he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature inthe two collections of poetry which are generally regarded as his finest single volumes, The Tower and The Winding Stair, appeared in and respectively. According to her recollection they first met in May and he sponsored her joining of the Golden Dawn in ; they talked of marriage in latein such a way that Georgie regarded it as an engagement, while WBY apparently did not, since he later proposed again to Maud Gonne and then her daughter, Iseult.

He proposed properly to Georgie on 26 September and they were married shortly after her twenty-fifth birthday on 20 October She was almost thirty years his junior and the marriage started inauspiciously, particularly since WBY was racked by doubts that he should have married Iseult Gonne.

She suggested that they attempt some automatic writing, which was in fact far from automatic, as she obliquely but very deliberately wrote that WBY had made the right decision. The birth of their children, Anne in and Michael ingradually helped to reduce the commitment of time, and the system began to reach a form of completion.


A Vision On the afternoon of October 24thfour days after my marriage, my wife surprised me by attempting automatic writing. What came in disjointed sentences, in almost illegible writing, was so exciting, sometimes so profound, that I persuaded her to give an hour or two day after day to the unknown writer, and after some half-dozen such hours offered to spend what remained of life explaining and piecing together those scattered sentences.

Over ten years were therefore dedicated to this work, although the Communicators had said that the purpose of the Script was to give him metaphors for poetry. Whatever the commitment to working on the System, however, it does not seem to have impeded his poetic and dramatic production. I do not know what my book will be to others — nothing perhaps.

This was to be part of a new Edition de Luxe, published by Macmillans, which never came to fruition, and the revised version was finally published independently in in the US.

The revisions are significant and the major differences are outlined on The Two Editions. One preliminary point must be made: Contents A Vision B is divided into two introductions and five sections, with two poems.

These stories centre around Michael Robartesthe supposed discoverer of the System, and a group of young people who become his followers. In it, Robartes outlines to Aherne the twenty-eight incarnations represented by the phases of the Moon.

It gives some general observations about the cycle entailed, and a series of rules concerning the Facultiestheir True and False formsand a set of tables showing the disposition of the Faculties in each incarnation, as well as certain characteristics and categories, including those of the Four Quarters of the Wheel.

These include two Phases where the incarnation is not physical, the extremes represented by the New Moon and the Full Moon.

An overview of the work by william butler yeats an irish poet

Unlike the Faculties, the Principles are seen to survive death, and two of them form the core of being which reincarnates. Yeats envisages twelve cycles of twenty-eight incarnations each, typically reaching completion in a Great Year of 26 years.

Yeats also introduces the figure of the Thirteenth Conewhich represents the idea of the divine within the System. The first three stages are involved with recognition of the life lived, exploration of its experiences, emotions and relationships, then transvaluation. In the fourth stage the soul sees the eternal perspective, before preparing for the coming incarnation in the final two stages.

It looks specifically at the years before the birth of Christ, and then, in more detail, the years following. It contrasts the annunciation to the Virgin Mary, symbolised by the Dove of the Holy Spirit, with the myth of Leda, who was raped by Zeus in the form of a Swan, and sees them as representing the key moments starting the two eras.

Summary All things are subject to a cycle of changes, which can be regarded as bi-polar, passing from a state of objectivity to one of subjectivity before returning to objectivity again. This can be seen as a form of oscillation, or a circuit around a wheel, and divides experience into the two halves of objectivity and subjectivity.

Under the term objective can be taken all that is collective, unifying, and which involves the individual being absorbed in something greater than itself, be that nature, society, God.William Butler Yeats was an Irish poet born in Dublin on June 13, Many of Yeats' poems showed his love and pride for Irish subjects.

Some, like those in his collection The Wind among the Reeds (), showed his interest in occultism and spiritualism. William Butler Yeats (; name pronounced "Yates") is one of the most significant poets in the English language of the twentieth century.

In fact his career spans both the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries and one of the remarkable things about him as a writer is the breadth and variety of his work, as well .

William Butler Yeats wrote his visionary poem, The Second Coming, in January when he was 44 years old. Already established as a poet, theatre director, politician and esoteric philosopher, this poem further enhanced his reputation as a leading cultural figure of the time.

In a letter to a. read this poet's poems.

SparkNotes: Yeats’s Poetry: Themes, Motifs and Symbols

Born in Dublin, Ireland, on June 13, , William Butler Yeats was the son of a well-known Irish painter, John Butler Yeats. W illiam Butler Yeats was an Irish poet and one of the most significant figures of 20th century literature. A poet and playwright, his work was greatly influenced by the heritage and politics of Ireland.

Watch video · William Butler Yeats was one of the greatest English-language poets of the 20th century and received the Nobel Prize for Literature in Synopsis Born in Ireland in , William Butler Yeats published his first works in the mids while a student at Dublin's Metropolitan School of Jun 13,

W. B. Yeats bibliography - Wikipedia