Wain, John Barringon

(1925-1994)
   Born in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, he graduated M.A. in 1950 from St. John's College, Oxford. He was a lecturer in English literature at Reading University and professor of poetry at Oxford University; some of his lectures are collected in his book Professing Poetry (1979). Thereafter he worked as a freelance journalist and author, writing and reviewing for newspapers and the radio. He is grouped either with the "Angry Young Men" of the 1950s or with "The Movement," but more accurately, with "The New University Wits." In 1983 he was made a Companion of the Order of the British Empire. He died at Oxford. He published a biography of Samuel Johnson (1974, revised 1980), his autobiography, Sprightly Running (1962), as well as plays, short stories, literary criticisms, and novels. Some of his poetry publications: A Word Carved on a Sill, 1956. Weep Before God, 1961. Wildtrack, 1965. Poems 1949-79, 1980. Poems for the Zodiac, 1980. The Twofold, 1981. Open Country, 1987. Some of his poems: "Anecdote of 2 A.M.," "Anniversary," "Apology for Understatement," "Brooklyn Heights," "Feng," "Gentleman Aged Five before the Mirror."
   Sources: Encyclopædia Britannica Ultimate Reference Suite DVD, 2006. Gladly Learn and Gladly Teach: Poems of the School Experience. Helen Plotz, ed. Greenwillow Books, 1981. The National Portrait Gallery (www.npg.org.uk). Poems-Fourth Edition: The Wadsworth Handbook and Anthology. C.F. Main and Peter J. Seng, eds. Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1978. The Columbia Granger's Index to Poetry. 11th ed. The Columbia Granger's World of Poetry, Columbia University Press, 2005 (http://www.columbiagrangers.org). The New Modern Poetry: British and American Poetry Since World War II. M.L. Rosenthal, ed. Macmillan, 1967. The Oxford Anthology of English Poetry, Vol. I: Spenser to Crabbe. John Wain, ed. Oxford University Press, 1990. The Oxford Anthology of English Poetry. Vol. II: Blake to Heaney. John Wain, ed. Oxford University Press, 1990. The Oxford Companion to English Literature. 6th edition. Margaret Drabble, ed. Oxford University Press, 2000. Twentieth-Century Poetry: American and British (1900-1970). John Malcolm Brinnin and Bill Read, eds. McGraw Hill, Rev. ed., 1970.

British and Irish poets. A biographical dictionary. . 2015.

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