An Explanation of America

An Explanation of America

by Robert Pinsky


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780691064079
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 08/21/1979
Series: Princeton Series of Contemporary Poets , #10
Pages: 80
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 1.50(h) x 9.50(d)

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An Explanation of America 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Peder_Schill More than 1 year ago
Robert Pinsky’s An Explanation of America is a series of poems that show the perspectives, visions and actions of modern day America. Throughout the book he does this through comparison towards other countries and blends of philosophy and history. The book is broken into three parts, Part One: Its Many Fragments, Part Two: Its Great Emptiness, and Part Three: It’s Everlasting Possibility. Each poem in the separate parts helps to illustrate the point that Pinsky is trying to make about American lifestyle. In the first section on Its Many Fragments, he begins by explaining the superficial views that people have their own countries in “Under the Surface”. As he continues in this section he describes the self-made prisons that are constructed out of this superficiality. And near the end of this section he even describes how this perspective causes us to hold onto certain myths and customs that ultimately define our country.  In the second part of his book he begins to destroy this sense of superficiality and illustrates in his poem “A Love of Death” the impossibility of some to find place in America. Throughout this section he continues to write about the disillusionment that is present and how people come to handle situations in which they are presented with blankness (“Bad Dreams”).  In his final part of his book, he illustrates how individuals still hold onto the aspiration that the US is such a great country and the hopes that we hold to. As he presents this he makes a point to illustrate many times when atrocities occur yet they are shrugged off and still seen as distant.  Overall Pinsky presents a series of poems to help relieve this illusion that is built of America to show exactly what it is and how one should act towards country.