About Gregory Dowling

Name: Gregory

Gregory Dowling grew up in Bristol, UK, and studied at Oxford University. Since 1979 he has lived in Italy; he is a professor of American literature at the University of Venice. Apart from his academic interests he has published four thrillers, set in England and Italy, and he has written and regularly updates the sightseeing pages for the Time Out Guide to Venice. His most recent book is a study of the poet David Mason (Story Line Press).


Gregory Dowling Has written the following articles:


“A Window Fiery-Mild”: The Role of Venice in The Book of Ephraim

The Book of Ephraim is a very “literary” work and perhaps never more so than in its Venetian sections (V and W). It is my contention that Section V (the letter V, not the Roman numeral) constitutes not only a major turning-point in the work, but also a significant declaration of Merrill’s literary aims. As […]

Posted in 2013 November: James Merrill Special Issue, This MonthComments (2)

James Merrill Special Issue: An Introduction

James Merrill is one of those poets whom everybody (well, everybody in the literary world) knows but whom few have read—or, at least, few have read at length or in depth. He shares his friend Elizabeth Bishop’s reputation as a “poet’s poet,” but in Bishop’s case the description is rather misleading; Bishop may appeal especially […]

Posted in 2013 November: James Merrill Special Issue, This MonthComments (0)

The Light of Loss: Thomas Hardy’s “The Last Signal”

Thomas Hardy’s poem “The Last Signal” is one of his finest elegies. That is already saying a good deal, since a great many of his poems could be defined as elegiac in tone, if not actually in strict form. This clearly is the case with almost all of the poems written about his first wife, […]

Posted in Classic Reading, October 2012: Thomas Hardy Special Issue, This MonthComments (1)

Introduction: The Poetry of Thomas Hardy (A Special Issue)

  Thomas Hardy is still far better known as a novelist than he is as a poet. Although certain poems have lodged themselves where, as Frost put it, they will be hard to get rid of, there is still a widespread conviction that much of his poetry is either awkward, difficult or just downright bad. […]

Posted in October 2012: Thomas Hardy Special Issue, This MonthComments (0)

CPR Classic Readings: Philip Larkin’s “Here”

Philip Larkin’s 1964 volume, The Whitsun Weddings, contains two poems describing train-journeys. One of them is the volume’s title-poem and is one of the most famous (and best-loved) poems in English since the Second World War; it has been said that with this work he brought a whole new English landscape into poetry. The other […]

Posted in Classic Reading, May 2010: Philip Larkin Special IssueComments (5)

Masters of the Airy Manner: Auden and Byron

W. H. Auden’s engagement with the poetry of Byron is perhaps not the most significant of his various literary relationships; probably not as important as that with W.B. Yeats or with T.S. Eliot; and we notice that in New Year’s Letter, when he lists the poetic mentors he sees as sitting in perpetual judicial session […]

Posted in EssaysComments (0)