Upton Sinclair put forth a much more judicious view of the writing of Percy Shelley than is to be found in the rather breathless hysteria of Adam Kirsch’s psycho-dramatic portrait in the New Yorker.
Sinclair discussed Shelley in a chapter of Mammonart:
“Shelley was one among the sons of Rousseau who did not falter and turn back to feudalism, Catholicism, or mysticism of any sort. He fixed his eyes upon the future, and never wavered for a moment. He attacked class privilege, not merely political, but industrial; and so he is the coming poet of labor.”
The “poet of labor” it goes without saying won’t be found in the pages of the New Yorker. Nor, of course, the counterpart critic. Too bad because it would be far more enlightening and useful to have the views of a critic like Sinclair on Shelley side-by-side with the views of a critic like Kirsch.
Sinclair had to self publish Mammonart. Kirsch’s review is sponsored by corporate money, per usual.
Mammonart chapter on Shelley here.