The Viney Agency


Duncan WuDuncan Wu is Professor of English at Georgetown University in Washington DC and former Professor of English Language and Literature at St Catherine’s College, Oxford. He is the author of numerous books on the poetry and prose of the British Romantic period, as well as on contemporary British drama. He is a regular contributor to the Times Higher Education Supplement, and has written for The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, and The Observer.

His Dog-Eared - Poems About Man’s Best Friend will be published by Basic Books in 2019.

LATEST BOOK: POETRY OF WITNESS - The Tradition in English 1500-2001 (with Carolyn Forche)

Duncan Wu
A groundbreaking anthology containing the work of poets who have witnessed war, imprisonment, torture, and slavery…

A companion volume to Against Forgetting, Poetry of Witness is the first anthology to reveal a tradition that runs through English-language poetry. The 300 poems collected here were composed at an extreme of human endurance--while their authors awaited execution, endured imprisonment, fought on the battlefield, or labored on the brink of breakdown or death. All bear witness to historical events and the irresistibility of their impact. Alongside Shakespeare, Milton, and Wordsworth, this volume includes such writers as Anne Askew, tortured and executed for her religious beliefs during the reign of Henry VIII; Phillis Wheatley, abducted by slave traders; Samuel Bamford, present at the Peterloo Massacre in 1819; William Blake, who witnessed the Gordon Riots of 1780; and Samuel Menashe, survivor of the Battle of the Bulge.

Poetry of Witness 
argues that such poets are a perennial feature of human history, and it presents the best of that tradition, proving that their work ranks alongside the greatest in the language.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Poetry of Witness: The Tradition in English 1500-2001 (with Carolyn Forche) (WW Norton and Company, 2014); William Hazlitt: The First Modern Man (Oxford University Press, 2008); Nicholas Heiney: The Silence at the Song’s End co-edited with Libby Purves (Song’s End Press, 2007); New Writings of William Hazlitt (2 vols., Oxford University Press, 2007; Romanticism: An Anthology (The Third Edition) (Blackwell, 2005); Metaphysical Hazlitt (Routledge, 2005) (co-edited with Tom Paulin and Uttara Natarajan); Wordsworth’s Poets (Carcanet, 2003); The Blackwell Essential Literature Series (General editorship). (7 vols., Blackwell, 2002); Wordsworth: An Inner Life (Blackwell, 2002); Making Plays: Interviews with Contemporary British Dramatists and Directors (Macmillan, 2000). Wordsworth’s Reading 1770-1799 (Cambridge University Press, 1993); Wordsworth: A Selection of his Finest Poems (Oxford University Press, 1994); Romanticism: An Anthology (Blackwell, 1994); William Wordsworth: The Earliest Poems 1785-1790 (Carcanet/Routledge, 2002); British Romanticism and the Edinburgh Review (Palgrave Macmillan, 2002); The Selected Writings of William Hazlitt (9 vols., Pickering and Chatto, 1998); A Companion to Romanticism (Blackwell, 1998); Romanticism: An Anthology (Second Edition) (Blackwell, 1998); Romanticism: The CD-ROM. Co-edited with David Miall (Blackwell, 1998); William Hazlitt, The Plain Speaker: Key Essays (Blackwell, 1998); Women Romantic Poets: An Anthology (Blackwell, 1997); Wordsworth’s Reading 1800-1815 (Cambridge University Press, 1996); Six Contemporary Dramatists: Bennett, Potter, Gray, Brenton, Hare, Ayckbourn (Macmillan Press, 1995); Romanticism: A Critical Reader (Blackwell, 1995).