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Daniel Robinson Releases New Book on Poet William Wordsworth's Autobiographical Writing

daniel robinson

Dr. Daniel Robinson

Dr. Daniel Robinson, professor of English at Widener University, has published “Myself and Some Other Being” about poet William Wordsworth with University of Iowa Press. In the book, Robinson tells of the innovative style of life-writing that evolved out of Wordsworth's journey to complete his autobiographical epic poem, "The Prelude."

Feeling pressured to write the greatest epic poem of all time, a task set for Wordsworth by his friend Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Wordsworth feared he was not up to the challenge and instead looked inside himself for memories and materials that he might make into poetry using the power of his imagination. Robinson details this examination in his book, writing that Wordsworth found another Wordsworth – not exactly the memory of his younger self, but rather "some other being" that he could adapt for a new, imaginative style of life-writing that he hoped would justify writing about his life.

The University of Iowa Press writes that Robinson ably demonstrates how "The Prelude" may serve as a provocative, instructive and inspirational rumination on the writing of one's own life by focusing on this young, ambitions, yet insecure Wordsworth struggling to find his place among other writers. Robinson puts Wordsworth forward as a model and inspiration for the next generation of writers by concentrating on the process of Wordsworth's endless revisions, the real literary business of creativity.

Robinson is also the author of "The Poetry of Mary Robinson: Form and Fame and William Wordsworth's Poetry." He edited the complete poetry of Mary Robinson for "The Works of Mary Robinson" and is coeditor of "The Oxford Handbook of William Wordsworth, Lyrical Ballads and Related Writings," and "A Century of Sonnets, 1750–1850: The Romantic-Period Revival."

Robinson resides in Wallingford, Pa., and is the singer-songwriter-bassist for the rock group Milton and the Devils Party. He earned his bachelor's in English from James Madison University and his master's in English and doctorate in English literature from the University of South Carolina.

Widener University is a metropolitan university that connects curricula to social issues through civic engagement. Dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention, leadership development and experiential learning are key components of the Widener experience. A comprehensive doctorate-granting university, Widener is comprised of eight schools and colleges that offer liberal arts and sciences, professional and pre-professional curricula leading to associate, baccalaureate, master's, and doctoral degrees. The university's campuses in Chester, Exton and Harrisburg, Pa., and Wilmington, Del., serve more than 6,300 students. Widener is proud to be a tobacco-free campus. Visit the university's website,