The Age of Anxiety: A Baroque Eclogue (1947; first UK edition, 1948) is a long poem in six parts by W. H. Auden, written mostly in a modern version of Anglo-Saxon alliterative verse.
The poem deals, in eclogue form, with man's quest to find substance and identity in a shifting and increasingly industrialized world. Set in a wartime bar in New York City, Auden uses four charactersÂ â" Quant, Malin, Rosetta, and EmbleÂ â" to explore and develop his themes.
The poem won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1948. It inspired a symphony by composer Leonard Bernstein, The Age of Anxiety (Symphony No. 2 for Piano and Orchestra) and a 1950 ballet by Jerome Robbins based on the symphony.
A critical edition of the poem, edited by Alan Jacobs, was published by Princeton University Press in 2011.
"The Age of Anxiety" is also the title of the first chapter of The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts (1951).
- The W. H. Auden Society