Leaving the Shade of the Middle Ground contains thirty-five of F.R. Scott’s poems from across the five decades of his career. Scott’s artistic responses to a litany of social problems, as well as his emphasis on nature and landscapes, remain remarkably relevant. Scott weighed in on many issues important to Canadians today, using different terms, perhaps, but with no less urgency than we feel now: biopolitics, neoliberalism, environmental concerns, genetic modification, freedom of speech, civil rights, human rights, and immigration. Scott is best remembered for “The Canadian Authors Meet,” “W.L.M.K,” and “Laurentian Shield,” but his poetic oeuvre includes significant occasional poems, elegies, found poems, and pointed satires. This selection of poems showcases the politics, the humour, and the beauty of this central modernist figure. The introduction by Laura Moss and the afterword by George Elliott Clarke provide two distinct approaches to reading Scott’s work: in the contexts of Canadian modernism and of contemporary literary history, respectively.
Wilfrid Laurier University Press
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