Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Arts (D.A.)



First Advisor

Robert Knighton

First Committee Member

Louis H. Leiter

Second Committee Member

Diane M. Borden


During the past five years, the literary critics have discovered William Blake, helping readers to understand clearly the various stages of development and the final form of the poet's entire mythology. And recent criticism has also clarified and expressed more systematically than earlier criticism certain features of Blake's total thought. Nevertheless, much recent criticism has hindered rather than helped the serious student of Blake's poetry.] Most critics treat Blake's poems as if they were only literary, completely avoiding discussion of their visual components. Yet, Blake clearly envisioned and intended that his reader view the poetry as a new form consisting of poetic text combined with visual art. Most of the entire published canon consists of pages reproduced in the method of what Blake called "illuminated printing" or "stereotype engraving," which employs border designs and/or illustrations in 2 conjunction with the poetic text. Of the 375 pages of the poetry published by Blake, only 38 pages of minor verse, all written when Blake was very young, appear in conventional printed form.





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