Robert Penn Warren

From Academic Kids

Robert Penn Warren (April 24, 1905 - September 15, 1989) was an American poet and writer.

He was born in Guthrie, Kentucky and graduated from Vanderbilt University in 1925 and the University of California, Berkeley in 1926. He later attended Yale University and obtained his B. Litt. at Oxford University in England in 1930.

Penn Warren won the Pulitzer Prize in 1947 for his best known work, the novel All the King's Men. He won Pulitzer Prizes in poetry in 1958 for Promises: Poems 1954-1956, and in 1979 for Now and Then. All the King's Men became a very successful film in 1949.

In 1981, Warren was selected as a MacArthur Fellow and later was named as the first U.S. Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry on February 26, 1986.

While still an undergraduate at Vanderbilt, he became associated with the group of poets there known as the Fugitives, and somewhat later, during the early 1930s, Warren and some of the same writers formed a group known as the Southern Agrarians. He contributed "The Briar Patch" to the Agrarian manifesto I'll Take My Stand along with 11 other Southern writers and poets (including fellow Vanderbilt poet/critics John Crowe Ransom, Allen Tate, and Donald Davidson).

Coauthor, with Cleanth Brooks of Understanding Poetry, an influential literature textbook (which was followed by other similarly coauthored textbooks Understanding Fiction and Modern Rhetoric) written from what can be called a New Critic approach.

In April of 2005, the United States Postal Service issued a commemorative stamp to mark the 100th anniversary of Penn Warren's birth. Introduced at the Post Office in his native Guthrie, it depicts the author as he appeared in a 1948 photograph, with a background scene of a political rally designed to evoke the setting of All the King's Men. His son and daughter, Gabriel and Roseanna Warren, were in attendance.

Works

  • At Heaven's Gate (1943)
  • All the King's Men (1946)
  • Promises: Poems (1954 – 1956)
  • Now and Then
  • John Brown: The Making of a Martyr
  • Thirty-six Poems
  • Night Rider
  • Eleven Poems on the Same Theme
  • Selected Poems, 1923 – 1943
  • Blackberry Winter
  • The Circus in the Attic
  • World Enough and Time
  • Brother to Dragons: A Tale in Verse and Voices
  • Band of Angels
  • Segregation: The Inner Conflict in the South
  • Selected Essays
  • The Cave
  • You, Emprerors, and Others: Poems 1957 – 1960
  • The Legacy of the Civil War
  • Wilderness
  • Flood
  • Who Speaks for the Negro?
  • Selected Poems: New and Old 1923 – 1966
  • Incarnations: Poems 1966 – 1968
  • Christmas Gift 1938 - According to some people, Shrek is an illustration of this story

External Links

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