Louise Glück Is Awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize in Literature

Born in New York Metropolis in 1943, Glück grew up on Lengthy Island, and was drawn to studying poetry and writing poetry as a toddler. She wrote a few of her earliest verses when she was 5, and set her thoughts to changing into a poet when she was in her early teenagers. She struggled with anorexia as an adolescent, a illness she later attributed to her obsession with purity and reaching management, and nearly starved herself to demise earlier than ultimately recovering by remedy.

She started taking poetry workshops round that point, and attended Sarah Lawrence School and later Columbia College, the place she studied with the poet Stanley Kunitz. She supported herself by working as a secretary in order that she might write on the facet. In 1968, she revealed her first assortment, “Firstborn.” Whereas her debut was nicely acquired by critics, she wrestled with writers’ block afterward and took a educating place at Goddard School in Vermont. Working with college students impressed her to begin writing once more, and he or she went on to publish a dozen volumes of poetry.

In a lot of her work, Glück attracts inspiration from classical mythological figures. In her 1996 assortment, “Meadowlands,” she weaves collectively the figures of Odysseus and Penelope from Homer’s Odyssey with the story of the dissolution of a modern-day marriage. In her 2006 assortment, “Averno,” she used the parable of Persephone as a lens to mother-daughter relationships, struggling, growing older and demise.

Glück’s verses usually mirror her preoccupation with darkish themes — isolation, betrayal, fractured household and marital relationships, demise. However her spare, distilled language, and her frequent recourse to acquainted mythological figures, offers her poetry a common and timeless really feel, mentioned the critic and author Daniel Mendelsohn, the editor at giant for The New York Evaluate of Books.

“While you learn her poems about these troublesome issues, you are feeling cleansed relatively than depressed,” he mentioned. “This is without doubt one of the purest poetic sensibilities in world literature proper now. It’s a form of absolute poetry, poetry with no gimmicks, no pandering to fads or developments. It has the standard of one thing standing nearly as outdoors of time.”

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