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A long overdue collection of critical writing on Oppen's substantial legacy.

George Oppen, a crucial figure in the founding of the Objectivist poetry movement, is considered by many critics and poets to be one of the foremost innovators of 20th-century American poetry. Oppen's Of Being Numerous won the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1969, and his influence on subsequent generations of poets has been profound.

The contributors to this unique collection of essays are both poets and critics who adopt a variety of critical stances. Some write as fellow poets who knew Oppen well during his lifetime and who have been deeply influenced by his example in their own work. Others write as poet-critics affiliated with the Language Poetry movement and bring to Oppen's work a keen appreciation for its relevance to contemporary avant-garde poetics. Still others come to Oppen as members of a younger generation of readers and writers working to articulate a new stage in Oppen's reception. The result is a rich and productive critical dialogue, touching on many of the most significant facets of Oppen's life and work. Thinking Poetics is a testament to Oppen's place in 20th and 21st-century poetic culture and an essential volume for anyone interested in Oppen's life or poetry.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780817355463
Publisher: University of Alabama Press
Publication date: 09/20/2009
Series: Modern & Contemporary Poetics Series
Edition description: 1st Edition
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Steve Shoemaker is Assistant Professor of English and Director of the Roth Writing Center at Connecticut College.

Contributors: Charles Bernstein \ Michael Davidson \ Rachel Blau DuPlessis \ Theodore Enslin \ Forrest Gander \ Lyn Hejinian \ Michael Heller \ John Lowney \ Peter Nicholls \ Kristin Prevallet \ Steve Shoemaker \ Ron Silliman \ John Taggart \ Susan Thackrey \ Henry Weinfield

Table of Contents

Preface: Meaning a Life vii

Introduction: Thinking Poetics Steve Shoemaker 1

I Working Papers/The Mind Thinking

1 Palimtexts: Postmodern Poetry and the Material Text Michael Davidson 23

II On Discrete Series/Of the World, Weather-Swept

2 Preliminary to a Close Reading of George Oppen's Discrete Series Lyn Hejinian 47

3 Discrete Series and the Posthuman City Steve Shoemaker 62

III Among the Philosophers

4 Oppen's Heidegger Peter Nicholls 91

5 Finding the Phenomenal Oppen Forrest Gander 120

IV Two Wars

6 One among Rubble: George Oppen and World War II Kristin Prevallet 131

7 "The Air of Atrocity": "Of Being Numerous" and the Vietnam War John Lowney 143

V Receptions

8 Third-Phase Objectivism Ron Silliman 163

9 George Oppen and the Anthologies John Taggart 170

10 Conviction's Net of Branches Michael Heller 184

11 Hinge Picture (on George Oppen) Charles Bernstein 197

12 "Uncannily in the Open": In Light of Oppen Rachel Blau DuPlessis 203

13 George Oppen: A Radical Practice (excerpt) Susan Thackrey 228

14 if it fails- Theodore Enslin 255

15 Excerpts from "'Because the Known and the Unknown Touch': A Reading of Oppen's Of Being Numerous'" Henry Weinfield 259

Acknowledgments 273

Contributors 275

Index 279

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