Non-guaranteed Special Session proposed for the 131 annual MLA Conference
In the preface to his Collected Poems, 1945, Robert Graves states: "I write poems for poets, and satires or grotesques for wits. For people in general I write prose, and am content that they should be unaware that I do anything else. To write poems for other than poets is wasteful."
These views reflect Graves's lifelong preoccupation with the complex question of a reading public—for whom should a writer write, and how does the notion of a reading public (even if only an idealized meta-public) inform an author's creative vision, the sense of his or her vocation and relationship to history.