Cultural Studies

Overview

From the back streets of Pittsburgh to the bars and byways of Puerto Rico, Cultural Studies explores the inner workings of a narrator at once resistant to the trappings of culture and embracing of its idiosyncrasies. Blending traditional forms with content in unexpected ways, these are poems that show a tough exterior as well as the vulnerability beneath the front, that feed off their apparent hypocrisy while casting it in the lead role. Ultimately, they are poems that build truths by amassing contradictions, ...
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Overview

From the back streets of Pittsburgh to the bars and byways of Puerto Rico, Cultural Studies explores the inner workings of a narrator at once resistant to the trappings of culture and embracing of its idiosyncrasies. Blending traditional forms with content in unexpected ways, these are poems that show a tough exterior as well as the vulnerability beneath the front, that feed off their apparent hypocrisy while casting it in the lead role. Ultimately, they are poems that build truths by amassing contradictions, whipping us along on engaging rhythmic journeys that often wind up—surprisingly—back where they began.
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What People Are Saying

Rain Taxi
"Explosive . . . González articulates the political in a completely unexpected way. [His] cultural mediations range from humorous to ironic, nostalgic to angry, creating a truly unique narrative voice."
Dean Young
"Not only are these poems about a voraciously lived life, there is vibrant life throbbing in them. With expansive grandeur and Whitmanian proclamations, Cultural Studies rides a cultural mélange with a channel-surfer’s brio, a surrealist’s hellbent imagination and a realist’s vivid fidelity to the facts: “The shriek of a thousand mongooses / giving birth to a thousand mongooses” indeed. The humor is ferocious as a good slap in the face, the voice beguiling as bouquet after bouquet blown apart by wild velocity, the heart as large as a mansion on fire."
Terrance Hayes
"Kevin González writes an athletic poetry, agile enough to sculpt lyrical sonnets and muscular enough to tame expansive spills of narrative. He has that rare ability to be sincere even in his irony, vulnerable even in his bravado. 'Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee': that feels suitable here. His poems possess that kind of wicked charm and potency, that kind of weaving, slippery grace."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887484933
  • Publisher: Carnegie-Mellon University Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/2009
  • Series: Carnegie Mellon Poetry Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 96
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

KEVIN GONZALEZ was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He holds degrees from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he was also a Carol Houck Smith Fellow in Fiction. His poems and stories have appeared in Playboy, The Progressive, Virginia Quarterly Review, Poetry and McSweeney’s, as well as in two editions of Best New American Voices and Best American Nonrequired Reading. He currently lives in Madison, Wisconsin.
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Table of Contents

Cultural Studies

Flat American Waltz
Cultural Stud
How To Learn English as a Second Language
Cultural Slut
Poet Laureate Guest Stars on The Simpsons
Cultural Sellout
1978
Ground Rules at Isla Verde Beach
Cultural Spar
Cultural Strumpet
How To Win a Poetry Contest
Cultural Scheme
1999
How To Survive the Last American Colony
Cultural Shock
Cultural Soliloquy
Cultural Schmooze
Cultural Scope
Skin
Flat American Waltz (Reprise)

NOTES
To You
The Night Tito Trinidad KO'ed Fernando Vargas
The Night Bernard Hopkins KO'ed Tito Trinidad
The Night Tito Trinidad KO'ed Ricardo Mayorga
Ghazal

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