In Drafts 1-38, Toll, Rachel Blau DuPlessis has built a work which mimics memory and its losses, and which plays with the textures of memory, including its unexpectedness, its flashes and disappearances. Her recurrent motifs and materials include home, homelessness and exile; death and the memory of the dead; political grief and passion; silence, speech, the sayable and the ineffable. Drafts 1-38, Toll functions as a long poem comprised of 38 pieces, or drafts. These poems are conceived as autonomous "canto-like" sections that work on two procedural principles. One is the random repetition of lines or phrases across poems, a self-questioning, processual, and reconceptualizing strategy that honors the term "drafts." A second procedural principle is "the fold." This is the reconsideration of a "donor draft" and the deployment of some aspect in the donor draft in a related draft. The periodicity of this reconsideration is the number 19; hence drafts 1-19 make up the original layer, while drafts 20-38 constitute the first fold on top of this material.
Poetics and Praxis ‘After’ Objectivismexamines late twentieth-and early twenty-first-century poetics and praxis within and against the dynamic, disparate legacy of Objectivism and the Objectivists. This is the first volume in the field to investigate the continuing relevance of the Objectivist ethos to poetic praxis in our time. The book argues for a reconfiguration of Objectivism, adding contingency to its historical values of sincerity and objectification, within the context of the movement’s development and disjunctions from 1931 to the present. Essays and conversations from emerging and established poets and scholars engage a network of communities in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., shaped by contemporaneous oppositions as well as genealogical (albeit discontinuous) historicisms. This book articulates Objectivism as an inclusively local, international, and interdisciplinary ethos, and reclaims Objectivist poetics and praxis as modalities for contemporary writers concerned with radical integrations of aesthetics, lyric subjectivities, contingent disruption, historical materialism, and social activism. The chapter authors and roundtable contributors reexamine foundational notions about Objectivism—who the Objectivists were and are, what Objectivism has been, now is, and what it might become—delivering critiques of aesthetics and politics; of race, class, and gender; and of the literary and cultural history of the movement’s development and disjunctions from 1931 to the present. Contributors: Rae Armantrout, Julie Carr, Amy De’Ath, Jeff Derksen, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Graham Foust, Alan Golding, Jeanne Heuving, Ruth Jennison, David Lau, Steve McCaffery, Mark McMorris, Chris Nealon, Jenny Penberthy, Robert Sheppard
What kinds of pleasure do we take from writing and reading? What authority has the writer over a text? What are the limits of language's ability to communicate ideas and emotions? Moreover, what are the political limitations of these questions? The work of the French cultural critic and theorist Roland Barthes (1915-80) poses these questions, and has become influential in doing so, but the precise nature of that influence is often taken for granted. This is nowhere more true than in poetry, where Barthes' concerns about pleasure and origin are assumed to be relevant, but this has seldom been closely examined. This innovative study traces the engagement with Barthes by poets writing in English, beginning in the early 1970s with one of Barthes' earliest Anglophone poet readers, Scottish poet-theorist Veronica Forrest-Thomson (194775). It goes on to examine the American poets who published in L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E and other small but influential journals of the period, and other writers who engaged with Barthes later, considering his writings' relevance to love and grief and their treatment in poetry. Finally, it surveys those writers who rejected Barthes' theory, and explores why this was. The first study to bring Barthes and poetry into such close contact, this important book illuminates both subjects with a deep contemplation of Barthes' work and a range of experimental poetries.
This book brings Drafts, the long poem by Rachel Blau DuPlessis, to its mid-point. A polyphonic work, both monumental and provisional, Drafts asks how to represent our sense of direness and ethical crises, the awe, asonishment, skepticism and pleasure: that all this is. This installment of nineteen Drafts is dedicated to its own poetic and political communities, offering these dedications as pledges to transformation out of social rage and out of grief-inflected hope. The book also contains a witty “summary” of all fifty-seven Drafts to date. This book makes clear the ways DuPlessis’ long poem is a midrashic response to the long poems of modernism and the tolls of modernity. She is a poet of polysemy, of negativity, of critique. Of Drafts, Walter Kaladjian remarked, “DuPlessis’ avant-garde procedures are imbricated in an ethicopolitical mode of poetic testimony.” Nathaniel Mackey said that Drafts “affirm and negate the toll history takes on letter and spirit, affirming and negating and navigating a way between.”
Avant-Post engages the question of whether or not avant-garde practice remains viable under the prevailing conditions of a whole series of "post-" ideologies, from Post-Modernism and Post-Structuralism, to Post-Historicism, Post-Humanism and Post-Ideology itself. Contributors include a range of artists and theorists, such as Johanna Drucker, Michael S. Begnal, Lisa Jarnot, Ann Vickery, Christian Bök, Robert Archambeau, Mairead Byrne, R.M. Berry, Trey Strecker, Keston Sutherland, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Robert Sheppard, Bonita Rhoads, Vadim Erent, Laurent Milesi, and Esther Milne.
The experiences of motherhood are not to be met with silence and/or platitudes. This anthology brings to light the many strong, scary, gorgeous motherhood poems being written right now--poems that address the politics and difficulties and stubborn satisfactions of mothering--while it reminds us of earlier poems that opened the space in which this new work might appear. Motherhood is a universal solvent: Contributors to this anthology come from all over the aesthetic map, and from different states of childgetting--adoption, single parenthood, new mothers, mothers of adults. Not for Mothers Only will abolish any comfortable prejudices about what poems on motherhood can or cannot do or say.
Poetry. A newly available part of Rachel Blau DuPlessis's well-known on-going series. This section comprises "a different order of folding-on-itself than readers have encountered thus far, one subjectively tensed between notions of summary and draft"--Louis Cabri "In a world where the lyric seems impossible, these pieces begin to not disbelieve in what Rachel Blau DuPlessis calls the "fabrics of pleasure" - the dots and dash, the "thisness and thatness" - that unnumbers the manifold and dictionaries a country. They bite back at the world with 'anguage'"--Nicole Markotic.
These essays in honor of Professor Elisabeth Schussler Fiorenza draw on international feminist scholarship indebted to her groundbreaking achievements in the areas of biblical studies, feminist thought and social justice. The contributors represent a wide variety of backgrounds, commitments, methodologies, talents, and interests. They are united here by their appreciation for her as scholar, teacher, mentor, colleague and friend. The spectrum is full of vitality, with important convergences and intersections. It exemplifies what Schussler Fiorenza has called "critical collaboration": women thinking together and creating together. This Festschrift is unique in that it celebrates the work of all women in the field.
What happens when, in the wake of postmodernism, the old enterprise of bibliography, textual criticism, or scholarly editing crosses paths and processes with visual and cultural studies? In this book, major scholars map out a new discipline, drawing on and redirecting a host of subfields concerned with the production, distribution, reproduction, consumption, reception, archiving, editing, and sociology of texts. Includes essays by Jerome J. McGann, David Greetham, Johanna Drucker, Mary Ann Caws, Charles Bernstein, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Gregory Ulmer, Stuart Moulthrop, Morris Eaves, Joseph Grigely, Daniel Ferrer, Tim Hunt and Henry Schwarz.
A surge into twenty-first century poetry and poetics, a book of passionate poetic energies and odic verve, "Surge" is the provocative, open-ended ending to DuPlessis's twenty-six year long poem project, Drafts. This work exemplifies a tertium quid, transcending poetic schools and critical binaries with its fusions of intellection and emotion, with its reassessments of Dante, Eliot, Duchamp, with its witty genre experimentation, with its strands of eco-poetics, feminist analysis, conceptual torques, and unstinting poetic commitment. The book contains a contemporary mirror of "The Waste Land," a striking political-emotional reflection on divided cities, an investigation of gender in a work of poet's theater, a ballad on science and reality, an index, a canzone and--over all--a scintillating texture of meditation in which the analytic lyric is intensified by the refractions of gloss.