Modern Poetry after Modernism / Edition 1

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In this book, James Longenbach develops a fresh approach to major American poetry after modernism. Rethinking the influential "breakthrough" narrative, the oft-told story of postmodern poets throwing off their modernist shackles in the 1950s, Longenbach offers a more nuanced perspective. Reading a diverse range of poets--John Ashbery, Elizabeth Bishop, Amy Clampitt, Jorie Graham, Richard Howard, Randall Jarrell, Robert Lowell, Robert Pinsky, and Richard Wilbur--Longenbach reveals that American poets since mid- century have not so much disowned their modernist past as extended elements of modernism that other readers have suppressed or neglected to see. In the process, Longenbach allows readers to experience the wide variety of poetries written in our time-- without asking us to choose between them.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This authoritative book should be read by anyone interested in contemporary US poetry."--Choice

"Modern Poetry After Modernism elucidates the recent arrangement of tradition and its individual talents. Longenbach understands creativity not as a combative but as a productive encounter between the poet and the past. Recognizing a common debt to modernism, Longenbach brings together a striking range of American poetry and reads it with uncommon insight."--Bonnie Costello, Boston University

"James Longenbach has given us a thrillingly responsive, generous, revisionary and enlarged version of American poetries after modernism. Make room on your bookshelf next to Randall Jarrell's Poetry and the Age, John Berryman's The Freedom of the Poet, and Richard Howard's Alone With America for this work of critical acuity and high empathic imagination."--Edward Hirsch, University of Houston

"Longenbach is, throughout this work, a model of critical judiciousness and generosity."--American Literature

"Clearly written...[an] extremely perceptive collection of essays."--Rachel Hadas, Rutgers University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195101782
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/28/1997
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,554,684
  • Lexile: 1410L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

James Longenbach is the Joseph H. Gilmore Professor of English at the University of Rochester. In addition to a forthcoming volume of poems called Threshold, he is the author of Wallace Stevens: The Plain Sense of Things (OUP, 1991), Stone Cottage: Pound, Yeats, and Modernism (OUP, 1988), and Modernist Poetics of History.

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Table of Contents

1 What Was Postmodern Poetry? 3
2 Elizabeth Bishop's Bramble Bushes 22
3 Elizabeth Bishop's Social Conscience 35
4 Randall Jarrell's Semifeminine Mind 49
5 Richard Wilbur's Small World 65
6 John Ashbery's Individual Talent 85
7 Amy Clampitt's United States 102
8 Richard Howard's Modern World 122
9 Robert Pinsky's Social Nature 141
10 Jorie Graham's Big Hunger 158
Notes 177
Index 197
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