Distant Reading: Performance, Readership, and Consumption in Contemporary Poetry

Overview

Distant Reading is a dynamic account of the history, practice, and theory of poetry as performance. It argues that poetry is a cultural activity that is always situated within specific sites of performance—recited on stage, displayed in magazines, laid out on a page, scrolled on the computer screen—rather than a transcendent cloud of meaning tethered only to its words. "Middleton investigates the manifold events that are usually conglomerated together under the name of reading: interactions of voice and text, of ...

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Overview

Distant Reading is a dynamic account of the history, practice, and theory of poetry as performance. It argues that poetry is a cultural activity that is always situated within specific sites of performance—recited on stage, displayed in magazines, laid out on a page, scrolled on the computer screen—rather than a transcendent cloud of meaning tethered only to its words. "Middleton investigates the manifold events that are usually conglomerated together under the name of reading: interactions of voice and text, of phonology, physiology and psychology; the sociology of the poetry reading; the ways that contemporary technologies connect and disperse a poem's readership. These complexities are exactly what make poetry interesting. Distant Reading promises to be a groundbreaking study of contemporary poetry—and it's a pleasure to read."—Bob Perelman, author of The Marginalization of Poetry: Language Writing and Literary History Peter Middleton is Professor of English at the University of Southampton, United Kingdom, and author of The Inward Gaze: Masculinity and Subjectivity in Modern Culture and Aftermath (poems).

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Middleton investigates the manifold events that are usually conglomerated together under the name of reading: interactions of voice and text, of phonology, physiology and psychology; the sociology of the poetry reading; the ways that contemporary technologies connect and disperse a poem's readership. These complexities are exactly what make poetry interesting. Distant Reading promises to be a groundbreaking study of contemporary poetry—and it's a pleasure to read." —Bob Perelman, author of The Marginalization of Poetry: Language Writing and Literary History
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780817314422
  • Publisher: University of Alabama Press
  • Publication date: 3/13/2005
  • Series: Modern and Contemporary Poetics Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Middleton is Professor of English at the University of Southampton, United Kingdom, and author of Literatures of Memory: History, Time, and Space in Postwar Writing (coauthored with Tim Woods), The Inward Gaze: Masculinity and Subjectivity in Modern Culture and Aftermath (poems).

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Table of Contents

1 The long biography of the poem : a scene of reading 1
2 Poetry's oral stage 25
3 A history of the poetry reading 61
4 Anonymous poetry 104
5 The line-break in everyday life 124
6 The new memoryism : reading poetry in the nineties 137
7 Dirigibles 160
8 Eat write 199
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