Scope and Content

Manuscript of the volume which mainly takes the form of xeroxed versions of Davie's prose criticism which formed the content of the book. These have all been copied from their original published sources - in books and various periodicals, apart from the essays 'Slogging for the Absolute' (xeroxed typescript), 'English and American in Briggflatts' (ribbon typescript) and 'The rhetoric of emotion' (galley proof). Barry Alpert's foreword and introduction are included as xeroxed typescripts, although the bibliography and index are omitted. Some of the volume's notes have been freshly typed; others are footnotes which have been cut out of the relevant xeroxed essay and pasted onto separate sheets of endnotes. There is also an additional essay at the end of the typescript which was not included in the published version of the book; this is 'Ezra Pound abandons the English', which has been foliated but was presumably later removed from the selection. It may have been replaced by 'English and American in Briggflatts' which has not been foliated or marked up. Apart from this essay, the typescript has been extensively marked up by Val Warner with instructions on style and layout for typesetting, principally in red ink and pencil. Markings indicating page breaks for the typeset version have been made in blue ink. Also marked by hand are inserts and alterations of original essay titles. Comments at the head of individual essays in pencil or pink pencil (indicating definite inclusion in the collection or commenting on essay contents) are probably by Barry Alpert; some of these are obviously intended for Davie to read. The manuscript was originally compiled by Alpert, who passed it on to Davie; Davie then submitted it to Carcanet (see letters in Davie correspondence file at CPA/2/1/22). At the front of the manuscript is a bundle of papers originating from Val Warner, including letters to Schmidt, notes and queries relating to the typescript, comments on style, some preliminary pages for the book, and a typed version of the book's notes. Some of these are carbon duplicates.


Although the manuscript bears its original foliation, there are additional unnumbered sheets and inserts, and one foliated essay has been removed from the sequence and placed at the end. The archivist has therefore added running numbers throughout (in the top left corner wherever possible).