Rachel Blau DuPlessis on Long Poem

LONG POEMS IN OUR TIME: NUMBERS, GENRES, ENCOUNTERS / RACHEL BLAU DUPLESSIS
Long Poems in our Time: Numbers, Genres, Encounters -with emphasis on the work of H. D. / Rachel Blau Duplessis. In Modernist Revolutions. Paradigms of the New and Circulations of the Word in American Poetry, journées d’études internationales organisées par Clément Oudart dans le cadre de “Poéthiques” (laboratoire Cultures Anglo-Saxonnes, axe 5), Université Toulouse II-Le Mirail, 16-17 janvier 2014.

The purpose of this conference is to revisit poetic modernism and its vicissitudes throughout a century of writing. Indeed from the New York Armory Show and the publication, arranged from London by Ezra Pound, of the first Imagist poems in Chicago’s Poetry magazine in 1913 to Rachel Blau DuPlessis’s “surge into twenty-first century poetry and poetics,” her latest installment in an open-ended 26-year project in 2013 (Surge: Drafts 96-114), the writing of innovative verse has gone through a bewildering sequence of movements, breaks, manifestoes and revolutions. To such an extent that one may wonder if the word revolution should not be understood literally, thus pointing to a global poetics spinning on itself at an angle, its inherent obliquity failing to prevent the perpetual return of the same, and the paradoxical establishment of a tradition of the new.
Such debate about radical change is unavoidably haunted by Eugene Jolas and his “Revolution of the Word” transition issue of 1929, with his much-quoted essay fostering the literary craftsman’s use of a dismantled syntax, along with his disintegration of pre-existing words and fashioning of a new, multilingual tongue—the literary means, in his view, for an intercontinental revolution. The participants will tackle the double bind of innovative writing, the transnational circulations of revolutionary claims, and the migratory forms of the new in American poetry from H.D. to DuPlessis.

* Illustration : The Rose (II) de Cy Twombly (2008) © Cy Twombly Foundation.

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