+1 Recommend
1 collections
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      A Note on Valentine Ackland

      The Journal of the Sylvia Townsend Warner Society
      UCL Press
      Sylvia Townsend Warner, Valentine Ackland


            Sylvia Townsend Warner supplied this brief note on Valentine Ackland, for the posthumous collection of Ackland’s poetry, The Nature of the Moment (1973).

            Main article text

            Editor’s note: This brief unsigned paragraph on Ackland appears at the end of the selection of Ackland’s poems, The Nature of the Moment (1973). Its perspective, style and context mean it can be attributed confidently to Warner, notwithstanding the unfortunate mistake about the date of Ackland’s death, here given as 1968 instead of 1969. Warner may perhaps also have contributed to the text on the inside dust jacket, which reads: ‘Valentine Ackland was born in 1906, and educated in London and Paris. She began to write poetry with serious intention in her early twenties. The poems in this selection are arranged roughly in chronological order from 1931 to a few years before her death in 1969. The sequence, Variations on a Theme, is included to show the development in mood and technique through two decades.’

            Valentine Ackland


            A lyrical disposition, a chess-playing mind, an implacable regard for truth—these are the constants in Valentine Ackland’s poetry as they were in her character. It was a perilous compound, for truth is an explosive and the chess-playing mind excelled in finding reasons to despair. During the Thirties and Forties her work was well thought of, and appeared in various reputable periodicals, English and American. As fashion changed, it fell out of fashion. Undeflected by this extraneous reason to despair, she wrote on, faithful to a life-long ambition to write the kind of poetry which would convey truth and the moment with plain-dealing integrity.

            The Nature of the Moment
            (London: Chatto & Windus, 1973), p. 63



            Ackland in fact died in 1969.

            Author and article information

            The Journal of the Sylvia Townsend Warner Society
            UCL Press
            15 April 2020
            : 19
            : 1–2
            : 3-4
            [* ] 1893–1978
            Copyright © 2020, Tanya Stobbs

            This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY) 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited • DOI: https://doi.org/10.14324/111.444.stw.2020.02

            Page count
            Figures: 0, Tables: 0, Equations: 0, References: 0, Pages: 2

            Literary studies,History
            Valentine Ackland,Sylvia Townsend Warner


            Comment on this article