The American Poetry Wax Museum
|Publisher||National Council of Teachers|
|Release Date||10 April 1996|
|Rating||4/5 from 21 reviews|
Drawing upon literary criticism, cultural studies, and social history, this book examines the canonizing assumptions (and compulsions) that have fabricated an image of American poetry since World War II, foremost of which is the enshrinement of the self-expressive subject. The tone of the book oscillates between documentary and polemic in an attempt to preserve the tensions that underlie the field of American poetry and which are typically subdued by anthologists and glossed over by commentators. The first chapter offers a theoretical scaffolding intended to contextualize following chapters and to invite other poets and critics to consider what it means to assemble and police a national canon of poetry. Subsequent chapters examine scholarship on contemporary American poetry; the cultural politics of publication and reviewing (which excludes, women, people of color, and gays and lesbians from many poetry anthologies); and poetry in the academy and the role of the poetry workshop. Ten appendixes list American poetry anthologies, most anthologized poets, number of anthology appearances, poets by birthdate, first anthology appearances, anthologies in translation, prizes and awards, results of a search of the MLA bibliography on CD-ROM, critical discussions of American poets, and interviews/collections of poets' essays. (RS).