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Twenty-First-Century Poetry and Philosophy in Dialogue

Twenty-First-Century Poetry and Philosophy in Dialogue ANNE DAY DEWEY Gerald L. Bruns. What Are Poets For? An Anthropology of Contemporary Poetry and Poetics. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2012. 222 pp. $39.95 paper. "W hat poets are for" requires new definitions as poetic activity takes forms hardly recognizable as poetry and poets and audiences inhabit multiple, translocal, and transnational communities. Although conceptions of the poet as visionary and of lyric as private meditation may never have been more than enabling fictions, contemporary poetic forms seem to stem from poets' renunciation of or inability to forge private language. Marjorie Perloff characterizes poetic creativity of the "new century" as "unoriginal genius," in which "what Hart Crane called the poet's `cognate word' begins to take a back seat to what can be done with other people's words."1 Michael Davidson observes the prevalence across various traditions of "a revision of Keats's negative capability around social crisis instead of personal uncertainty."2 Such changes may reflect shifting boundaries of public and private, far and near, due to the volume, mobility, and immediacy of information from the World Wide Web. Not only have digital media freed word from page, but 1. Marjorie Perloff, Unoriginal Genius: Poetry by Other Means in http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Literature University of Wisconsin Press

Twenty-First-Century Poetry and Philosophy in Dialogue

Contemporary Literature , Volume 54 (3) – Nov 25, 2013

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Publisher
University of Wisconsin Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin.
ISSN
1548-9949
Publisher site
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Abstract

ANNE DAY DEWEY Gerald L. Bruns. What Are Poets For? An Anthropology of Contemporary Poetry and Poetics. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2012. 222 pp. $39.95 paper. "W hat poets are for" requires new definitions as poetic activity takes forms hardly recognizable as poetry and poets and audiences inhabit multiple, translocal, and transnational communities. Although conceptions of the poet as visionary and of lyric as private meditation may never have been more than enabling fictions, contemporary poetic forms seem to stem from poets' renunciation of or inability to forge private language. Marjorie Perloff characterizes poetic creativity of the "new century" as "unoriginal genius," in which "what Hart Crane called the poet's `cognate word' begins to take a back seat to what can be done with other people's words."1 Michael Davidson observes the prevalence across various traditions of "a revision of Keats's negative capability around social crisis instead of personal uncertainty."2 Such changes may reflect shifting boundaries of public and private, far and near, due to the volume, mobility, and immediacy of information from the World Wide Web. Not only have digital media freed word from page, but 1. Marjorie Perloff, Unoriginal Genius: Poetry by Other Means in

Journal

Contemporary LiteratureUniversity of Wisconsin Press

Published: Nov 25, 2013

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