Those Barren Leaves

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First edition
(publ. Chatto & Windus) Thosebarrenlea.jpg
First edition
(publ. Chatto & Windus)

Those Barren Leaves is a satirical novel by Aldous Huxley, published in 1925. The title is derived from the poem "The Tables Turned" by William Wordsworth which ends with the words:

Satire genre of arts and literature in the form of humor or ridicule

Satire is a genre of literature, and sometimes graphic and performing arts, in which vices, follies, abuses, and shortcomings are held up to ridicule, ideally with the intent of shaming individuals, corporations, government, or society itself into improvement. Although satire is usually meant to be humorous, its greater purpose is often constructive social criticism, using wit to draw attention to both particular and wider issues in society.

Aldous Huxley English writer

Aldous Leonard Huxley was an English writer and philosopher. He authored nearly fifty books—both novels and non-fiction works—as well as wide-ranging essays, narratives, and poems.

William Wordsworth English Romantic poet

William Wordsworth was a major English Romantic poet who, with Samuel Taylor Coleridge, helped to launch the Romantic Age in English literature with their joint publication Lyrical Ballads (1798).

Enough of Science and of Art;
Close up those barren leaves;
Come forth, and bring with you a heart
That watches and receives.

Stripping the pretensions of those who claim a spot among the cultural elite, it is the story of Mrs. Aldwinkle and her entourage, who are gathered in an Italian palace to relive the glories of the Renaissance. For all their supposed sophistication, they are nothing but sad and superficial individuals in the final analysis.


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