Talk:Donald Davie

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Sample Poem[edit]

Is it permitted by copyright to enter a sample poem or two here? I know a couple of Donald Davie's poems but I will not enter them if they are just going be deleted. SmokeyTheCat 09:37, 25 May 2007 (UTC)

I have added a sample poem. I don't want the grey boxes round the verses but the words should be spread out across the page. Could a more experienced editor tidy this up please? Thanks in advance. SmokeyTheCat 21:11, 10 June 2007 (UTC)

I have removed the poem from the page because, as you were concerned, copyright poses a problem here. A complete poem just placed there with no context does not really fall under fair usage. A few lines from a poem to illustrate a point (such as highlighting a particular style the author uses) adds to the article and can comfortably be considered fair use, whereas a large block of text used merely as ornamentation or to bulk up the article cannot. ~Matticus TC 09:18, 11 June 2007 (UTC)
That seems a bit unfair after I went to all the effort of typing it in. In Philip Larkin's entry there are links to several of his complete poems. Why is there an copyright issue giving a link to a complete poem but not entering one directly here? That doesn't make any sense.SmokeyTheCat 10:41, 11 June 2007 (UTC)
Links to complete poems on external sites are generally fine (if that site is violating copyright, then that's their issue and not Wikipedia's), but content within Wikipedia articles themselves has to fall under the GNU Free Documentation License, free to be copied and redistributed by anyone (provided they credit the originating source correctly). This makes dropping large chunks of copyrighted material into articles problematic - if anyone can copy articles freely, that means the author's work is being distributed freely, regardless of their wishes and rights. Extracts of copyrighted material must be kept to the minimum required to get the point across within the article, and never be used gratuitously. There's no clear line where something crosses from fair use to infringement, but generally a few lines from a particular song/poem/book/whatever is considered acceptable (provided they have relevance to the article, of course). I do know that wholesale dumping of copyrighted song lyrics into articles is a definate no-no, so similar rules apply to copyrighted poetry. I know copyrights and fair use are complicated areas, but they cannot be ignored, especially in a project on this scale and visibility. I know it's frustrating that your work gets undone, but as it says at the bottom of every edit window, "Content that violates any copyright will be deleted" - if I hadn't removed it, someone else would doubtless have spotted it eventually and done the same. I don't pretend to be an expert on copyright and fair use myself, but I do know enough to get by on Wikipedia. If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to leave a message on my talk page and I'll do what I can to answer. ~Matticus TC 16:33, 11 June 2007 (UTC)
Okay fair enough Matticus. Your point is well made. I have posted the poem elsewhere and given a link. I may post some more as I think Davie is an under-rated poet and not well enough known.SmokeyTheCat 14:04, 14 June 2007 (UTC)

This is a cold thread, but the solution here is to give a sample, not an entire poem. A stanza or two. The article as it stands doesn't really give the flavor of Mr. Davie's work, because if you know his poetry, you know that his use of traditional forms and poetic decorums can actually seem jarring in light of his Modernist interests — I find his views on Wordsworth and his championing of Edward Thomas more illuminative of his own work than his expertise in Pound. He was also a supporter of Samuel Menashe (in whose article he's mentioned) long before Menashe was officially recognized as a Neglected Master. I always thought that Davie's most radical notion was that the idolizing of Shakespeare, or shakespearian extravagance of language, represented a choosing of vice in the path of English literature over the plain virtues of Chaucer (not that Davie necessarily set this up in moral terms of vice and virtue). This also affected his approach to poets such as Christopher Smart; he thought that as with Pound's later Cantos, Smart's mental illness contributed to excess and obscurity in what's considered probably his greatest work, the Jubilate Agno; or at least Mr. Davie thought the virtues of Smart's other poetry were neglected by comparison, because of the tendency to value the grandiose. (I don't know whether this has ever been considered in light of Umberto Eco's notions of ur-fascism and the valuing of the heroic; Eco's only 10 years younger, so this reaction to grandeur seducing plain and modest virtue could be viewed as generational, for the obvious historical reasons of the 1930s.) Davie's questioning of the canon seems to me to lie under his interest in Pound, or the wrestling with Pound, and the Modernists in whose shadow he formed himself as a poet. Because he had done much of his work just before the identity-politics blitzkrieg hit academe, he's been considered very Dead White Male, but in fact his questioning of the canon anticipates those issues of who gets included, or which of their works — it's just that he would've answered the question of who deserves reconsideration with, as far as I know, mostly white males. But on the basis of aesthetic criteria conducive to the inclusion of women and minorities who had reason to reject imperialist or testosterone-induced bombast. He was a modest, generous, capacious-minded man. Cynwolfe (talk) 12:28, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

Is Philip Larkin a "traditionalist"? He loathed T.S. Eliot. While he was a political reactionary, and while formally he certainly wasn't a modernist or experimental poet, he used demotic language and cuss words frequently, and discussed with great frankness topics like carnality and loss of faith. Yet he was traditional in his use of rhyme and meter. He was not exactly an anti-traditionalist, either. A neo-Hardian? An anti-Eilotian?

He wasn't an easy poet to categorize. Frost is often called a traditionalist. I don't think the term works any better for him. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:49, 5 January 2010 (UTC)