VAN WYCK BRGOKS on Pound as expatriate, June 1920
DOI link for VAN WYCK BRGOKS on Pound as expatriate, June 1920
VAN WYCK BRGOKS on Pound as expatriate, June 1920 book
It is quite astonishing still to find young and intelligent persons who can not forgive Ezra Pound for living in England and sticking out his tongue at his native land. It seems to me that if American literature is ever to be really roused it will be largely through the Instigations (to use the apt title of Mr. Pound'~ new book. ... ) of a band of impenitent gadflies who have nothing to lose and who have got their country into the sort of perspective that comes best from living outside of it. Do you remember in Ibsen's letters how he describes the sensations with which he sailed up the fjord after a ten years' absence from home? 'A feeling of weight settled down on my breast, a feeling of actual physical oppression. And this feeling lasted all the time I was at home; I was not myself under the gaze of all those cold, uncomprehending Norwegian eyes at the windows and in the streets'. That abyss of the exile between Ibsen and his countrymen was indispensable to the growth of a vision that revolutionized in time the whole spiritual life of Norway. I am not suggesting that Ezra Pound is another Ibsen, or that one can not maintain this abyss of exile without crossing the ocean. What I mean is that Ezra Pound has very much at heart the civilization of these United States.