The Contemporary Narrative Poem: Critical Crosscurrents

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2012-12-15
  • Publisher: Univ of Iowa Pr
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Over the past thirty years, narrative poems have made a comeback against the lyric approach to poetry that has dominated the past century. Drawing on a decade of conferences and critical seminars on the topic, The Contemporary Narrative Poemexamines this resurgence of narrative and the cultural and literary forces motivating it. Gathering ten essays from poet-critics who write from a wide range of perspectives and address a wide range of works, the collection transcends narrow conceptions of narrative, antinarrative, and metanarrative. The authors ask several questions: What formal strategies do recent narrative poems take? What social, cultural, and epistemological issues are raised in such poems? How do contemporary narrative poems differ from modernist narrative poems? In what ways has history been incorporated into the recent narrative poetry? How have poets used the lyric within narrative poems? How do experimental poets redefine narrative itself through their work? And what role does consciousness play in the contemporary narrative poem? The answers they supply will engage every poet and student of poetry.

Author Biography

Steven P. Schneider is a professor of English at the University of Texas-Pan American and director of new programs and special projects in the College of Arts and Humanities. He is the author of A. R. Ammons and the Poetics of Widening Scope and the editor of Complexities of Motion: New Essays on A. R. Ammons's Long Poems. The Winner of an Anna Davidson Rosenberg Award for Poetry and a Nebraska Arts Council Fellow-ship, he has published poems and essays in national and international journals, including Critical Quarterly, Prairie Schooner, Tikkun, The Literary Review, and The Iowa Review.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. xiii
Formal Strategies in Contemporary Narrative Poemsp. 1
Narrative Strata in the Sonnet Sequence: Sandra M. Gilbert's "Belongings"p. 3
The Fascination of What's Difficult: Narrative Poetry in Strict Formsp. 27
Imagining Geography: Campbell McGrath's Road Trips, Travelogues, and the Narrative Prose Poemp. 56
The Contemporary Narrative Poem and Historyp. 75
Contrived Corridors: History and Postmodern Poetryp. 77
Eloquent Silences: Lyric Solutions to the Problem of the Biographical Narrativep. 102
Historical Narrative in the Lyric Sequence: The Challenge of Robert Penn Warren's Audubon: A Visionp. 123
The Experimental Contemporary Narrative Poemp. 147
One Arc Synoptic: Plot, Poetry, and the Span of Consciousnessp. 149
Great Stories, Little Stories: A. R. Ammons and Narrativep. 184
John Ashbery and Narratology: The Story is the Tellingp. 206
Splayed Texts, Bodily Words: Handwriting and Seriality in Feminist Poeticsp. 221
Contributorsp. 245
Indexp. 249
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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