As both a politically engaged and stylistically versatile poet, W.H. Auden is one of the most influential writers of the twentieth century. His work is not only widely studied and read, but has been used in musical scores and quoted in Hollywood films. This guide to Auden's compelling work offers: * an accessible introduction to the contexts and many interpretations of Auden's texts, from publication to the present * an introduction to key critical texts and perspectives on Auden's life and work, situated in a broader critical history * cross-references between sections of the guide, in order to suggest links between texts, contexts and criticism * suggestions for further reading. Part of the Routledge Guides to Literature series, this volume is essential reading for all those beginning detailed study of W.H. Auden and seeking not only a guide to his works but also a way through the wealth of contextual and critical material that surrounds them.