Clemens Spahr's A Poetics of Global Solidarity: Modern American Poetry and PDF

By Clemens Spahr

ISBN-10: 1137568313

ISBN-13: 9781137568311

ISBN-10: 1349552593

ISBN-13: 9781349552597

Tackling themes equivalent to globalization and political activism, this publication strains engaged poetics in twentieth century American poetry. Spahr offers a accomplished view of activist poetry, beginning with the nice melancholy and the Harlem Renaissance and relocating to the Beats and modern writers akin to Amiri Baraka and Mark Nowak.

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Extra info for A Poetics of Global Solidarity: Modern American Poetry and Social Movements

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The revolution starts with seeing “[t]he girl across the aisle,” acknowledging that “it’s you/ she’s smiling at” (99). It is in these instances that the subject begins to recompose itself, that it reconstitutes itself as a part of a decentered subjectivity through the other. The poem, therefore, connects the minutest detail of human interaction to the political situation that reifies social relations. The intuitive nonverbal communication is essentially an act of love, both in the sense of a romantic love scene “in the subway on a winter morning” and in the sense of a spontaneous political affiliation with others that characterizes Rolfe’s Romanticism.

Although the conditions of literary expression changed considerably, with the Popular Front in many instances focusing on national politics as embodied in Earl Browder’s 1936 slogan “Communism is 20th Century Americanism,” and while there was considerable debate over the Popular Front’s cultural and political agenda, poetry remained a consistent factor in the struggle for social justice. 1 Advertisement for Red Poets’ Nite, from the Daily Worker (1928), (reproduced from Nelson/Hendricks 9). 24 ● A Poetics of Global Solidarity global working-class solidarity, capable of contributing to social and political change.

Giovannitti transposes the people’s creative power into a more distinct celebration of the American working class in his Whitmanesque free verse poem, “‘O Labor of America: Heartbeat of Mankind,’” probably published around 1918, where the people are shown as a poeitic force: labor perpetually re-creates America much like blood circulation maintains the functions of the human body. The cosmopolitan “harbor that swallows the nations” from “New York and I” reappears verbatim, forming the horizon of national politics and working-class activism.

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A Poetics of Global Solidarity: Modern American Poetry and Social Movements by Clemens Spahr


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