In the latest installment of his Poeboes Podcast series for WWB, André Naffis speaks to poet, critic, novelist, and publisher Michael Schmidt.
Michael Schmidt, O.B.E., FRSL, (1947 – ) poet, critic, novelist and publisher, is also a Professor of Poetry at the University of Glasgow in Scotland. After leaving Harvard in 1967, Schmidt matriculated at Wadham College, Oxford and founded the Carcanet Press in 1969. The imprint has since established an unparalleled reputation, continually reaffirming its belief in internationalism, publishing the likes of Paz, Pasolini, Pavese and countless others, often providing the only outlet for writers both past and contemporary that were marginalized by mainstream publishers. Since 1972 he has also edited PN Review, in which capacity he was aided by Donald Davie and C.H. Cisson until 1984.
With a reputation for intellectual rigour, Schmidt has always been concerned with writers’ lives. In the monumental, Lives of the Poets in 1998 (Knopf), he blended analysis with snippets about the authors' personal quirks and backgrounds. Over the past decade he has been at work on the multi-volume series, The Story of Poetry, the fourth and fifth installments of which will soon be out with Weidenfeld in the UK. His ninth collection of poetry, The Resurrection of The Body, was published in 2007 by Smith/Doorstop.