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The Triggering Town: Lectures and Essays on Poetry and Writingby Richard Hugo
Synopses & Reviews
Marjorie Perloff writes in her preface to Poetics in a New Key that when she learned David Jonathan Y. Bayot wanted to publish a collection of her interviews and essays, she was at once honored and mystified.” But to Perloffs surprise and her readers delight, the resulting assembly not only presents an accessible and provocative introduction into Perloffs critical thought, but also highlights the wide range of her interests, and the energetic reassessments and new takes that have marked her academic career.
The fourteen interviews in Poetics in a New Key—conducted by scholars, poets, and critics from the United States, Denmark, Norway, France, and Poland, including Charles Bernstein, Hélène Aji, and Peter Nicholls—cover a broad spectrum of topics in the study of poetry: its nature as a literary genre, its current state, and its relationship to art, politics, language, theory, and technology. Also featured in the collection are three pieces by Perloff herself: an academic memoir, an exploration of poetry pedagogy, and an essay on twenty-first-century intellectuals. But across all the interviews and essays, Perloffs distinctive personality and approach to reading and talking resound, making this new collection an inspiring resource for scholars both of poetry and writing.
"I don't know why we do it. We must be crazy./Welcome, fellow poet."--Richard Hugo
This collection of interviews and essays presents an entertaining and provocative introduction to the critical thought of Marjorie Perloff. The fourteen interviews — conducted by accomplished scholars, poets, and critics from the United States, Denmark, Norway, France, and Poland — cover many topics: poetrys nature as a literary genre, its current state, and its relation to art, politics, language, theory, and technology. The volume also features three essays by Perloff: an academic memoir, an exploration of poetry pedagogy, and an essay on the (re)constitution of the intellectuals in the 21st century. It will be an inspiring resource for both scholars and poets who care to live a life of attention, on and off the page of poetry.
Richard Hugo was that rare phenomenon of American letters'"a distinguished poet who was also an inspiring teacher. The Triggering Townis Hugo's now-classic collection of lectures, essays, and reflections, all "directed toward helping with that silly, absurd, maddening, futile, enormously rewarding activity: writing poems." Anyone, from the beginning poet to the mature writer to the lover of literature, will benefit greatly from Hugo's sayd, playful, profound insights and advice concerning the mysteries of literary creation.
Richard Hugo, whom Carolyn Kizer called "one of the most passionate, energetic and honest poets living," was that rare phenomenon--a distinguished poet who was also an inspiring teacher. The Triggering Town is Hugo's classic collection of lectures, essays, and reflections, all "directed toward helping with that silly, absurd, maddening, futile, enormously rewarding activity: writing poems." From pieces that include "Writing off the Subject" and "How Poets Make a Living," anyone, from the beginning poet to the mature writer to the lover of literature, will benefit greatly from Hugo's playful and profound insights into the mysteries of literary creation.
About the Author
Richard Hugo was for many years the director of the creative writing program at the University of Montana, Missoula Campus. He received the Theodore Roethke Memorial Prize and was twice nominated for the National Book Award.
Table of Contents
Part I: The Critic
1 Becoming a Critic: An Academic Memoir
2 A Critic of the Other Tradition
Interview with Hélène Aji and Antoine Cazé
3 Marjorie Perloff On and Off the Page of Poetry
Interview with Kristine Samson and Nikolaj Rønhede
Part II: A Poetics
4 The Alter(ed) Ground of Poetry and Pedagogy
Conversation with Charles Bernstein
5 Mapping the New
Interview with Rain Taxi Review of Books
6 Modernism / Postmodernism? Will the Real Avant-garde Please Stand Up!
Interview with Jeffrey Side
7 (Un)Framing the other Tradition: On Ashbery and Others
Interview with Grzegorz Jankowicz
8 Robert Lowell, Now and Then
Conversation with David Wojahn
9 Futurism and Schism: Close Listening with Marjorie Perloff
Interview with Charles Bernstein
10 The Challenge of Language
Interview with Enrique Mallen
11 Conceptual Writing: A Modernist Issue
Interview with Peter Nicholls
12 Still Making It New: Marjorie Perloff in Manifesto Mode
Interview with Ellef Prestsæter
Part III: To Praxis
13 What is Poetry?
Interview with Fulcrum
14 On Evaluation in Poetry
Dialogue with Robert von Hallberg
15 Teaching Poetry in Translation: The Case for Bilingualism
16 The Internet Moment in the Life of Publishing
Interview with Front Porch Magazine
17 The Intellectual in the 21st Century
David Jonathan Y. Bayot
Index of Names
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