Literary Criticism



Before the Raj

James Mulholland
Anglo-India's regional literature was both a practical and imaginative response to a pivotal period in the early colonialism of South Asia.

Iliazd

Johanna Drucker
The poet Ilia Zdanevich, known in his professional life as Iliazd, began his career in the pre-Revolutionary artistic circles of Russian futurism. By the end of his life, he was the publisher of deluxe limited edition books in Paris. The recent subject of major exhibitions in Moscow, his native Tbilisi, New York, and other venues, the work of Iliazd has been prized by bibliophiles and collectors for its exquisite book design and innovative typography. Iliazd collaborated with many major figures...

BAX 2020

Seth Abramson
from Okazaki Fragments by Kanika Agrawal These proceedings in nature These proceedings in cold biology These proceedings in chemical society These proceedings in physical communication We refer to the concentration of residues We observe that one sediments faster than the other We presume as fact that most of what we do is in growing incomplete short chains We further support the conclusion We indicate direction also by another method We are grateful to Drs. BAX 2020, guest-edited by...

The Fabric of Empire

Danielle C. Skeehan
"Textiles are the books that the colony was not able to burn."—Asociación Femenina para el Desarrollo de Sacatepéquez (AFEDES) A history of the book in the Americas, across deep time, would reveal the origins of a literary tradition woven rather than written. It is in what Danielle Skeehan calls material texts that a people's history and culture is preserved, in their embroidery, their needlework, and their woven cloth. In defining textiles as...

Death and Rebirth in a Southern City

Ryan K. Smith
Richmond, Virginia, the former capital of the Confederacy, holds one of the most dramatic landscapes of death in the nation. Its burial grounds show the sweep of Southern history on an epic scale, from the earliest English encounters with the Powhatan at the falls of the James River through slavery, the Civil War, and the long reckoning that followed. And while the region's deathways and burial practices have developed in surprising directions over these...

Modernism after Postcolonialism

Mara de Gennaro
Existing studies of literary modernism generally read Anglophone Atlantic texts through the lens of critical theories emanating from Europe and North America. In Modernism after Postcolonialism, Mara de Gennaro undertakes a comparative Anglophone-Francophone study, invoking theoretical frameworks from Gayatri Spivak, Édouard Glissant, Françoise Vergès, Michel-Rolph Trouillot, Dipesh Chakrabarty, and others. Examining transnational poetics of...

Modernism's Metronome

Ben Glaser
In the twentieth century, meter became an object of disdain, reimagined as an automated metronome to be transcended by new rhythmic practices of free verse. Yet meter remained in the archives, poems, letters, and pedagogy of modern poets and critics. In Modernism's Metronome, Ben Glaser revisits early twentieth-century poetics to uncover a wide range of metrical practice and theory, upending our inherited story about the "breaking" of meter and rise of free verse. Glaser argues...

Now It's Dark

Peter Gizzi
SOME JOY FOR MORNING Now the connection with spring has dissolved. Now that hysteria is blooming. Says every day I want to fly my kite. Says what's a grammar when you is no longer you. My world is hydrogen burning in space and in the fullness of etc. I have read the news and learned nothing. I try to understand the whooshing overhead. But for a little light now. I didn't realize the tree was weeping. How was I to know I am not alone. Wild light. The poems in this brilliant follow-up to the National Book Award finalist...

No Kids Allowed

Michelle Ann Abate
What do Adam Mansbach's Go the F**k to Sleep and Barbara Park's MA! There's Nothing to Do Here! A Word from your Baby-in-Waiting have in common? Both are large-format picture books that you might find in the children's section of your local bookstore. However, their subject matter is decidedly intended for parents rather than children. In No Kids Allowed, Michelle Ann Abate examines a constellation of such books which she argues form a paradoxical new genre: children's literature...

Conjure

Rae Armantrout
CARE Dress like you care! Eat like you care! Care like you care! You don't think apples just grow on trees, do you? * A fish taps a clam against a bony knob of coral to crack its shell – which demonstrates intelligence yes, but is the fish pleased with itself? * Alone in your crib, you form syllables. Are you happy when one is like another? Add yourself to yourself. Now you have someone Rae Armantrout has always taken pleasure in uncertainties and conundrums, the tricky nuances of language and feeling. In...

Xicancuicatl

Alfred Arteaga
CAMINO IMAGINADO Blue leaves, hojas rotas in the shape of stars. Ni un "no" en tu vocabulario but for others; blue in place of green in the shape of Spain. Ojos the color of dirt, chocolate, coffee, time, azules las horas, hojas de horas van y se van, ni una palabra, ni una queja, nor broken bit a tu lado beside me andamos walking, sí walking caminamos caminos like these, such streets, what city. 7/15/95 Paris Xicancuicatl collects the poetry of leading avant-garde Chicanx poet Alfred Arteaga...

Cosmic Deputy

Kalamu ya Salaam
Cosmic Deputy is a literary memoir from esteemed activist, educator, producer, and poet Kalamu ya Salaam. Representative poems from Salaam's fifty years of writing are interspersed in an overarching essay tracing the poet's multitude of influences. Toward mapping a theory of a Black literary aesthetic, Salaam explores the cultural inheritances of Black resistance movements, blues music, and the ways in which these sources and others have shaped not only his own work but Black letters more...

I Am New Orleans

Kalamu ya Salaam
NOLA Is A myth. A reality. A port. A place.  An opening. A dead end. A womb. A grave. Audubon Zoo and Monkey Hill uptown. Mardi Gras Fountain with the colored lights downtown.   Above ground crypts at St. Louis Cemeteries 1, 2, and 3. Football fields. Parade grounds. Picnic areas. Citywide. Lake front. River front.  Fishing hole. Bayou swamp.  Raw oysters. Fried chicken.  Front-liners. Second-liners.  Storefront churches. A sacred cathedral. Superdome. Shotgun...

A Forest of Names

Ian Boyden
July 30 Tiānwēi Celestial Awe He carried no iron into battle. When he lifted his hand, he brandished the sky. How do we honor the dead? How do we commit them to memory? And how do we come to terms with the way they died? To start, we can name them. When schools collapsed in an earthquake in China, burying over 5,000 children, the government brutally prevented parents from learning who had died. Artist Ai Weiwei, at risk to his own safety, gathered the names of these children, and their names are the...

Un-American

Hafizah Geter
Testimony for Tamir Rice, 2002-2014 Mr. President, After they shot me they tackled my sister. The sound of her knees hitting the sidewalk made my stomach ache. It was a bad pain. Like when you love someone and they lie to you. Or that time Mikaela cried all through science class and wouldn't tell anyone why. This isn't even my first letter to you, in the first one I told you about my room and my favorite basketball team and asked you to come visit me in Cleveland or send your autograph. In the second one I thanked...

Imagined Empires

Dimitris Stamatopoulos
This collective volume enhances the discourse on the ideological prerequisites for the emergence of Balkan nationalisms. The Balkans offer classic examples of how empires imagine they can transform themselves into national states (Ottomanism) and how nation-states project themselves into future empires (as with the Greek "Great Idea" and the Serbian "Nacertaniye"). This book examines the interaction between these two aspirations. The book is comprised of...

Latour and the Humanities

edited by Rita Felski and Stephen Muecke
In recent years, defenses of the humanities have tended to argue along predictable lines: the humanities foster empathy, the humanities encourage critical thinking, the humanities offer a counterweight to the cold calculations of the natural and social sciences. The essays in Latour and the Humanities take a different approach. Exploring the relevance of theorist Bruno Latour's work, they argue for attachments and entanglements between the humanities and the sciences while looking...

RENDANG

Will Harris
Mother Country The shades open for landing,  I see the pandan-leafed  interior expanding towards the edge of a relieved horizon. Down along the banks of the Ciliwung  are slums I had forgotten,  the river like a loosely  sutured wound. As we begin  our descent into the black  smog of an emerging power, I make out the tin  shacks, the stalls selling juices,  the red-tiled colonial  barracks, the new mall. It is raining profusely. After years of her urging me to go, me holding back, I have no more excuses. Using long poems,...

Detectives in the Shadows

Susanna Lee
Steadfast in fighting crime, but operating outside the police force—and sometimes even the law—is the private detective. Driven by his own moral code, he is a shadowy figure in a trench coat standing on a street corner, his face most likely obscured by a tilted fedora, a lit cigarette dangling from his hand. The hard-boiled detective is known by his dark past, private pain, and powers of deduction. He only asks questions—never answers them. In his stories he is both the main character...

The Homeric Hymns, third edition

Translation, Introduction, and Notes by Apostolos N. Athanassakis
A rich source for students of Greek mythology and literature, the Homeric Hymns are also fine poetry. Attributed by the ancients to Homer, these prooimia, or preludes, were actually composed by various poets over centuries. They were performed at religious festivals as entertainment meant to stir up enthusiasm for far more ambitious compositions that followed them, namely the Iliad and Odyssey. Each of the thirty-three poems is written in honor of a Greek god or goddess.