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Volume 13, Number 2 (1988)

Irving's Women: A Feminist Critique of the Love Poems of Irving Layton

  • Joanne Lewis
May 22, 2008


Irving Layton's love poetry is neither a celebration of women nor an enduring tribute to the women who have touched his life; yet, to call his poetry sexist, to brand him a male chauvinist and leave it at that, does little but to state the obvious. A close examination of Layton's work, applying some of the theories of feminist criticism, reveals his immature attitude toward women and sex, and his belief that men are superior, both physically and intellectually, to women. It also exposes Layton as a misogynist, with particular hatred and fear of the woman artist.