Individualism and Universalism in Pound’s Poetics

Shuixiang PENG


Ezra Pound has long pursued individualism in his poetics, both in his translation and creation of poems. Yet he has also been interpreted as a universalist. As an individual, Pound’s strategy is to attain an identity of the best poet through accomplishment that is personal, visible and measurable. Universalism is realized by merging his social responsibility and world humanities into his art conception of poems based on the interaction of different cultural traditions aesthetically and socially. The accommodation and confrontation between individualism and universalism in the interpretation of his work reflects the consistency and the conflict both within his thought and more significantly, within the vision of world-humanity. Pound’s struggle for his pursuit of poetics reveals a picture of a solemn and stirring attempt to balance the totalism of a poet and the actualization of an ideal society. Such concern with Pound’s pursuit will be explored in this essay from the local luminous details of his poems to a pan-cultural push of his work for realizing an individual’s dream and realizing its relevant social values.


Individualism; Universalism; Humanities

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