By Margueritte S. Murphy
From its inception in nineteenth-century France, the prose poem has embraced a cultured of outrage and innovation instead of culture and conference. during this suggestive research, Margueritte S. Murphy either explores the heritage of this style in Anglo-American literature and offers a version for interpreting the prose poem, regardless of language or nationwide literature. Murphy argues that the prose poem is an inherently subversive style, person who needs to ceaselessly undermine prosaic conventions with a view to validate itself as authentically "other". even as, every one prose poem needs to to some extent recommend a conventional prose style to be able to subvert it effectively. The prose poem is therefore of particular curiosity as a style during which the normal and the recent are introduced unavoidably and always into clash.
Beginning with a dialogue of the French prose poem and its adoption in England by means of the Decadents, Murphy examines the results of this organization on later poets akin to T.S. Eliot. She additionally explores the conception of the prose poem as an androgynous style. Then, with a sensitivity to the sociopolitical nature of language, she attracts at the paintings of Mikhail Bakhtin to light up the ideology of the style and discover its subversive nature. the majority of the publication is dedicated to insightful readings of William Carlos Williams's Kora in Hell, Gertrude Stein's delicate Buttons, and John Ashbery's 3 Poems. As remarkable examples of the yank prose poem, those works display the diversity of this genre's radical and experimental chances.
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Extra resources for A tradition of subversion: the prose poem in English from Wilde to Ashbery
How might a poetic genre be instrumental in the processes of social, political, and literary history? And how might history itself impinge on the development of a poetic form? My approach will consider the possibilities and constraints of the form qua form as basic, then move on to examine the ideological "content" of the form, and how its "message" or sociopolitical configuration develops in the course of a century or so in a foreign tradition. This study, then, has two purposes that are related: first, to offer a model for reading prose poems irrespective of language or national literature.
As a result, the range of diction appearing in the prose poem is potentially as broad as that of the language itself. As these comments suggest, the prose poem has a capacity for subversion beyond purely formal considerations. What was the ideological function of the prose poem at its inception, especially in the hands of Baudelaire, the first great popularizer of the genre? How did this function evolve in the second half of the nineteenth century in Page 5 France? Terdiman and Monroe both make powerful arguments for the prose poem as a "counter-discourse" to the dominant discourses of nineteenth-century France.
Fullness, in the repetition of a single color, for instance, becomes stagnation, monotony, and "ennui"; a sumptuous decor, overwrought description, the suggestion of infinity connote finally a fading, overripe world, either eternally in decay or ready for the apocalypse. " While formally no single pattern is established, what often distinguishes these pieces from short stories, fairy tales, or orderly and complete description is their resistance to closure, finality, their fragmentary nature. As Howells remarks, the finish of an enunciated moral would destroy their "delicacy" as would the finality of a happy or tragic ending.
A tradition of subversion: the prose poem in English from Wilde to Ashbery by Margueritte S. Murphy
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