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Why I Am Not a Painter Summary
Frank O'Hara

Everything you need to understand or teach Why I Am Not a Painter by Frank O'Hara.

  • Why I Am Not a Painter Summary & Study Guide

Why I Am Not a Painter Summary

Introduction

Frank O'Hara's "Why I Am Not a Painter" was first published in 1957 in the Evergreen Review. Having a reputation for publishing some of the more adventurous works of the day, Evergreen Review was a fitting venue for O'Hara. Going against the predominant "neo-Symbolist" poetry of the time—a poetry in the tradition of T. S. Eliot, which critic Paul Carroll characterized in his The Poem in Its Skin as "civilized, verbally excellent, ironic, cerebral"—O'Hara's work is usually conversational and casual in tone. "Why I Am Not a Painter," in fact, like many of O'Hara's poems, reads as if O'Hara had simply improvised it off the top of his head.

Considered by many critics to be one of O'Hara's greatest poems, "Why I Am Not a Painter" reflects upon the creative process by comparing the writing of O'Hara's poem "Oranges: 12 Pastorals" with the painting of "SARDINES," a canvas by...

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Study Pack

The Why I Am Not a Painter Study Pack contains about 34 pages of study material in 4 products, including:

Why I Am Not a Painter Study Guide

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