Blake and Tradition is an investigation of the sources of Blake's knowledge of the Neoplatonic and Hermetic tradition and allied currents of thought. The volumes contain what was then new information on Blake's vast fund of exact knowledge in these fields, and Kathleen Raine interprets his works in the light of the ideas that originally inspired and informed them.
The core of this important work of scholarship formed the A. W. Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts in 1962 at the National Gallery of Art in Washington. The expanded, two-volume work was originally published by Routledge & Kegan Paul in 1969.
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'In every word of her delicate lyrical poetry, every line of her vivid, distinguished prose (including the celebrated candor of her three volumes of autobiography) Kathleen Raine has given unique expression to her belief in the value and meaning of man's 'inner journey' - her own included. This interior journey is, in her view, the one true source of mankind's greatest imaginative achievements. It is her own mystical poetic empathy that she has drawn most deeply in her illuminating studies of such poets as Blake, Yeats, Dante, Coleridge, St. John Perse, as also - outside poetry - in what she has written of Neoplatonism, Surrealism, Carl Jung and the Jungians.' - Nancy Wilson Ross -
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