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1955 in poetry: Map


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  • The Group, a British poetry movement, starts meeting in Londonmarker with gatherings taking place once a week, on Friday evenings, at first at Hobsbaum's flat and later at the house of Edward Lucie-Smith. The poets gathered to discuss each other's work, putting into practice the sort of analysis and objective comment in keeping with the principles of Hobsbaum's Cambridge tutor F. R. Leavis and of the New Criticism in general. Before each meeting about six or seven poems by one poet would be typed, duplicated and distributed to the dozen or so participants.
  • The Movement poets as a group in Britain came to public notice this year in Robert Conquest's anthology New Lines. The core of the group consisted of Philip Larkinmarker, Elizabeth Jennings, D. J. Enright, Kingsley Amis, Thom Gunn and Donald Davie. They were identified with a hostility to modernism and internationalism, and looked to Thomas Hardy as a model. However, both Davie and Gunn later moved away from this position.
  • Henry Rago[311445] becomes editor of Poetry
  • April — Wallace Stevens is baptized a Catholic by the chaplain of St. Francis Hospital in Hartford, Connecticut, where Stevens spent his last days suffering from terminal cancer. After a brief release from the hospital, Stevens was readmitted and died on August 2 at the age of 76.

Beat poets

Works published in English

Listed by nation where the work was first published and again by the poet's native land, if different; substantially revised works listed separately:


New Zealand

  • James K. Baxter:
    • The Fire and the Anvil, critical study, based on three Macmillan Brown lectures on poetry at Victoria University in 1954, criticism
    • Traveller’s Litany, a long poem published in pamphlet form
  • J. R. Hervey, She Was My Spring
  • Kendrick Smithyman, The Gay Trapeze, Wellington: Handcraft Press

United Kingdom

  • W. H. Auden, The Shield of Achilles, first published in the United States

United States

Criticism, scholarship, and biography in the United States

  • Carl Sandburg, Prairie-town boy (autobiography; essentially excerpts from Always the Young Strangers)

Other in English

  • A. D. Hope, The Wandering Islands (Australia)
  • D. Stewart and N. Keesing, editors, Australian Bush Ballads, anthology (Australia)

Works published in other languages


Indian subcontinent

Including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal. Listed alphabetically by first name, regardless of surname:



Other languages of the Indian subcontinent

Other languages

Awards and honors


Death years link to the corresponding "[year] in poetry" article:


Birth years link to the corresponding "[year] in poetry" article:

See also


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