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M. H. Abrams, 1912 - 2015 Meyer Howard Abrams was born in Long Branch, New Jersey on July 23, 1912. He received a B.A. in English from Harvard University in 1934. He won a Henry fellowship to Cambridge University in 1935. He returned to Harvard University, where he received a Masters' degree in 1937 and a Ph. D. in 1940. He joined the Cornell University faculty in 1945 and taught a popular introductory survey class. While at Cornell in the 1950s, he was asked by publisher W. W. Norton to lead a team of editors compiling excerpts of vital English works. The first edition of the Norton Anthology came out in 1962. Abrams stayed on through seven editions. He was also the author of a popular Glossary of Literary Terms, The Mirror and the Lamp: Romantic Theory and the Critical Tradition, Natural Supernaturalism, The Milk of Paradise, and the essay collection The Fourth Dimension of a Poem. In 2014, he received a National Arts Medal for "expanding our perceptions of the Romantic tradition and broadening the study of literature." He died on April 21, 2015 at the age of 102. (Bowker Author Biography) — biography from The Norton Anthology of English Literature, Volume 1… (more)
A Glossary of Literary Terms 571 copies, 2 reviews
The Norton Anthology of English Literature (Editor) 324 copies, 1 review
Zig-zag Pets 3 copies

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Abrams was born in a Jewish family in Long Branch, New Jersey. The son of a house painter and the first in his family to go to college, he entered Harvard University as an undergraduate in 1930. He went into English because, he says, "there weren't jobs in any other profession, so I thought I might as well enjoy starving, instead of starving while doing something I didn't enjoy." After earning his baccalaureate in 1934, Abrams won a Henry fellowship to the University of Cambridge, where his tutor was I.A. Richards. He returned to Harvard for graduate school in 1935 and received his Masters' degree in 1937 and his PhD in 1940. During World War II, he served at the Psycho-Acoustics Laboratory at Harvard. Abrams wrote his first book, The Milk of Paradise: The Effects of Opium Visions on the Works of De Quincey, Crabbe, Francis Thompson, and Coleridge (1934), while an undergraduate. With his second work, The Mirror and the Lamp: Romantic Theory and the Critical Tradition (1953), an expanded version of his Ph.D. dissertation, he joined the front rank of Romantic-literature scholars. In 1945 Abrams became a professor at Cornell University. As of March 4th, 2008, he was Class of 1916 Professor of English Emeritus there. He is still publishing: in August 2012, Norton will bring out a new collection of his essays, The Fourth Dimension of a Poem.
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