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This book examines the literary impact of famed British poet, Barry MacSweeney, who worked at the forefront of poetic discovery in post-war Britain. Agitated equally by politics and the possibilities of artistic experimentation, Barry MacSweeney was ridiculed in the press, his literary reputation only recovering towards the end of his life which was cut short by alcoholism. With close readings of MacSweeney alongside his contemporaries, precursors, and influences, including J.H. Prynne, Shelley, Jack Spicer, and Sylvia Plath, Luke Roberts offers a fresh introduction to the field of modern poetry. Richly detailed with archival and bibliographic research, this book recovers the social and political context of MacSweeney’s exciting, challenging, and controversial impact on modern and contemporary poetry.