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Ted Hughes Biography | Poet

Photo of Ted Hughes

Ted Hughes was one of the most well-known poets of the twentieth century, and the world lost him far too soon. He was born on August 17th in 1930, and he died on the 28th of October in 1998. He was born in Mytholmroyd, Yorkshire, England and died in London, England. Ted Hughes is known for his own professional achievements as well as his complex relationship with fellow literary star Sylvia Plath. From 1984 until he died, he was the British Poet Laureate.

The Education of Ted Hughes

Growing up, Ted Hughes attended Mexborough Grammar School. He read English at Pembroke College. However, it should be noted that Ted Hughes himself would probably say that his education was more of a hindrance than a real asset. Students would spend a good time dissecting literary texts. While Ted Hughes considered himself very good at this task, he also more or less thought that it was beneath him. He didn't create a lot of his own poetry during this time period, so learning about other poets did not seem to have encouraged him creatively at this time. If nothing else, his education helped clarify exactly what he wanted out of his own work.

The Complex Familial Life of Ted Hughes

Sylvia Plath was an established poet by the time she met Ted Hughes, even though they both met at such a young age. They hit it off quickly. Ever since the suicide of Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes has become a controversial figure in his own right. Some people claim that he was responsible for her suicide. By all accounts, Ted Hughes was devastated when she died, and he did try to preserve her legacy.

However, no one really knows what went on during their brief marriage. Some people try to dissect Sylvia Plath's poetry looking for answers. Ted Hughes himself didn't really explore their complicated relationship until he wrote Birthday Letters in 1998. Sylvia Plath seems to have had a history of depression and suicide attempts prior to her marriage to Ted Hughes, but that doesn't disprove that he made it worse. No one will ever really know what happened in that house, although people have been trying to voice their own views for decades.

The Mark Ted Hughes Made on the Poetry World

As the Poet Laureate of Britain from 1984 until his death in 1998, Ted Hughes was the most important poet in England for a long time. He is still regarded as one of the most important English poets. He placed fourth on a list of the fifty greatest British writers since 1945, based on a grouping from the Times.

Ted Hughes made his debut in 1957 with The Hawk in the Rain. However, many people today still know him for his 1970 work Crow. This was a quintessentially twentieth century work. It has an apocalyptic feel to it and it is very darkly cynical, while it also is written in a very straightforward style. Ted Hughes was one of the people who created the literary trends of the twentieth century, and he certainly embodied many of them.

The Influence and Legacy of Ted Hughes

Ted Hughes was fascinated by the brutality of nature. His work often discussed the natural world in one way or another, frequently in a very dark and cynical manner. Sometimes, he would draw a parallel between this part of the reality and the society in which everyone lives. His work has a solid darkness to it that is difficult to ignore.

Many twentieth century writers were terrified of the results of the Cold War, and it caused many of them to become skeptical about the modern world in general. Plenty of them became fascinated with nature or with childhood as a result. Many of them also became deeply cynical and dark, as if nothing that they did really mattered, except perhaps what they did with their poetry. Ted Hughes managed to embody all of these characteristics, making him the voice of a generation in may ways. His straightforward but emotionally transcendent writing style also became famous in the literary world, and it helped inspire many other people to move in the same direction. He'll always be known as more than Sylvia Plath's husband. 

Ted Hughes: Poems | Best Poems | Short Poems | Quotes

Book: Reflection on the Important Things