The Collected Poetry of Paul Laurence DunbarBy Paul Laurence Dunbar
This edition of the collected poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar includes 60 poems not included in the previous - and now out of print - "Complete Poems". 16 of these were found in manuscript form. Paul Laurence Dunbar's work achieved wide recognition in the first part of this century. The author of six volumes of poetry, as well as novels, liberettos, songs and essays, he was nationally known and accepted by black and white readers alike. The poet's influence has been far-reaching, and reaction to him, at times, controversial. In addition to creating musical renditions of black folk language, both comic and serious, he wrote lyrical poetry in standard English verse, inspired by Shakespeare, Shelley, Keats, Tennyson and the American romantics. Critics in Dunbar's day, however, led by William Dean Howells, noted only his comic dialect poetry, dismissing the standard English poetry and ignoring the subtlety and depth of the dialect work. Disagreements about the significance and meaning of Dunbar's poetry have continued through succeeding generations.