Words of Wisdom:

"make what is not what it one day dreams of being" - Kevin


  • Date Submitted: 11/25/2011 08:43 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 59.9 
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1. Biography 2

2 . Introduction 3

3 . Poem “Casualty” 4 – 6

4. Commentary 7 – 8

5. Conclusion 9

6. Bibliography 10


Born to a catholic family in Northern Ireland, Heaney received his B.A. from Queen's University, Belfast, in 1961. He has taught widely in secondary schools and universities since then.

With his first book, Death of a Naturalist   , Heaney began his work of revealing life in rural Ireland as he esperienced it in his boyhood.He is also concerned with the poet's political role; the poet is both helpless witness and accomplice in the fratricidal battles   of his country. A Catholic caught in the sectarian violence of his native Belfast, he understands the trap of history.
Heaney's poems first came to public attention in the mid-1960s when he was active as one of a group of poets who were subsequently recognized as constituting something of a "Northern School" within Irish writing. Although Heaney is stylistically and temperamentally different from such writers as Michael Longley and Derek Mahon (his contemporaries), and Paul Muldoon, Medbh McGuckian and Ciaran Carson (members of a younger Northern Irish generation), he does share with all of them the fate of having be en born into a society deeply divided along religious and political lines, one which was doomed moreover to suffer a quarter-century of violence, polarization and inner distrust.
This had the effect not only of darkening the mood of Heaney's work in the 1970s, but also of giving him a deep preoccupation with the question of poetry's responsibilities and prerogatives in the world, since poetry is poised between a need for creative freedom within itself and a pressure to express the sense of social obligation felt by the poet as citizen. The essays in Heaney's three main prose collections, but especially those in The Government of the...


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