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At the turn of the twentieth century literary critic Frank Raymond Leavis set the structure by which the ensuing centurys poetry would be created when he stated that the job of the poet is to highlight the most conscious point of the race in his time Leavis in Hopkins 1997 Poets since then have followed this directive by writing about issues that are pertinent to the time and place in which they are living As the latter part of the twentieth century saw a number of major changes in society so too did the poetry reflect these changes resulting in the creation of novel and unique poetics A poet who has charged into the view of the public demanding attention is Peter Reading Reading takes controversial and unpleasant issues and portrays them as bluntly and dramatically as he can as he himself has stated art has always struck me most when it was to do with coping with things often hard things that are difficult to take Kennedy 1996120 The things that are difficult to take are Readings disturbing observations of his decaying nation of Britain as well as his often appalled and appalling visionof the ways of the homo sapiens Jenkins in Kennedy 1996120 Readings nihilistic and pessimistic view for his country and species is seen in lines from his work Evagatory where he states England The Times screwed up in a trash-basket gliding astern the Thames the old prides end of an era nation notion albion urban devenustated one of those routine periodic faunal extinctions cf the Permian anthropod aberration posterity These lines demonstrate his view that not only is England nearing the end of a nation but as he compares it to a mass extinction of the past it is the end of a species Not only does the harsh subject matter that Reading deals with set him apart but so does the manner in which he presents it He uses
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