Page last updated at 12:03 GMT, Friday, 6 November 2009

Morrissey is 'best musical poet'

Morrissey singing
Morrissey has been compared with luminaries such as Beckett and Larkin

A Scottish academic has written a book arguing that singer Morrissey is the greatest lyricist in the history of British popular music.

Dr Gavin Hopps has compared the Manchester performer to literary luminaries such as Samuel Beckett, Philip Larkin and Oscar Wilde.

The St Andrews University lecturer is an expert in British Romanticism.

The launch of Dr Hopps' book, "Morrissey: The Pageant of His Bleeding Heart", will take place in Manchester.

The event will be held on Saturday at Blackwell's University bookshop in the city's Oxford Road.

Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now -I was happy in the haze of a drunken hour, but heaven knows I'm miserable now. I was looking for a job, and then I found a job and heaven knows I'm miserable now
This Charming Man -I would go out tonight, but I haven't got a stitch to wear, this man said: "It's gruesome, that someone so handsome should care"
Some Girls are Bigger than others - From the ice-age to the dole-age, there is but one concern, I have just discovered - some girls are bigger than others

Dr Hopps believes Morrissey's work is comparable not only to great writers but also to comedy greats such as Frankie Howerd and George Formby.

The book explores all the major subjects in the singer's writing - such as love, melancholy, monstrosity and alienation.

Dr Hopps, who is one of the founding trustees of the Scottish Byron Society, is the author of a number of papers on poetry and pop music.

Morrissey, whose full name is Steven Patrick Morrissey, was born in Manchester in 1959.

He began his musical career in the 1970s. But it was not until the early 1980s, when he met guitarist Johnny Marr that things really took off.

Marr and Morrissey created The Smiths along with Mike Joyce and Andy Rourke.

By the late 1980s The Smiths broke up and Morrissey embarked on a solo career, producing his first album, Viva Hate.

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