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Martin K. Nurmi, 1920-2008

Martin K. Nurmi, born in Duluth, Minnesota, received his doctorate in English (“Blake’s Doctrine of Contraries: A Study in Visionary Metaphysics”) from the University of Minnesota in 1954. He was a faculty member at Kent State from 1955 until his retirement in 1984, during which time he served terms as department chair, head of the faculty senate, and dean of the graduate school. His books include Blake’s Marriage of Heaven and Hell: A Critical Study (1957), A Blake Bibliography (1964), in collaboration with G. E. Bentley, Jr., and William Blake (1975), an introduction to the poetry (“In trying to make Blake’s poetry more easily accessible, I hope I have not diminished the wonder of his difference from most other poets but only clarified it a little”). His love of music was reflected in his scholarship by the “Note on Musical Settings” appended to A Blake Bibliography, as well as reviews for Blake of the concert at the Blake conference in Santa Barbara in 1976 and of Everett C. Frost’s production of An Island in the Moon.

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