New Theoretical Perspectives on Dylan Thomas

New Theoretical Perspectives on Dylan Thomas

A writer of words, and nothing else?

Rhian Barfoot, Kieron Smith


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Dylan Thomas’s reputation precedes him. In keeping with his claim that he held ‘a beast, an angel, and a madman in him’, interpretations of his work have ranged from solemn adoration to exaggerated mythologising. His many voices continue to reverberate across culture and the arts: from poetry and letters, to popular music and Hollywood film. However, this wide and sometimes controversial renown has occasionally hindered serious analysis of his writing. Counterbalancing the often-misleading popular reputation, this book showcases eight new critical perspectives on Thomas’s work. It is the first to provide in one volume a critical overview of the multifaceted range of his output, from the poetry, prose and correspondence to his work for wartime propaganda filmmaking, his late play for voices Under Milk Wood, and his reputation in letters and wider society. The whole proves that Thomas was much more than, to use his own dubious self-description, 'a writer of words, and nothing else’.