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Stephen Fredman asserts in his work that American poetry is groundless - that each generation of American poets faces the problem of identity anew and has to discover fresh meaning for itself. His argument focuses on four pairs of poets - Eliot/Williams, Thoreau/Olson, Emerson/Duncan and Whitman/Creeley - and points out that although the later ones all were influenced by their predecessors to some extent, ultimately their poetry is, paradoxically, grounded in an essential groundlessness. In order to demonstrate how approaches to groundlessness have persisted over time, Fredman explores the various measures taken by these American poets to provide a provisional ground upon which to construct their poetry: inventing idiosyncratic traditions, forming poetic communities, engaging in polemical prose, assessing all the dimensions of particular places and treating words as emblematic and mysterious objects. At the very core of the book stands Charles Olson, whose work so dramatically articulates the whole range of issues arising from the American poet's anxious search for and resistance t, an authentic and unified tradition.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780521443036
ISBN-10: 0521443032
Format: Hardback
(228mm x 152mm x 14mm)
Pages: 186
Imprint: Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publish Date: 28-May-1993
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Stephen Fredman


Books By Author Stephen Fredman

Grounding of American Poetry by Stephen Fredman

The Grounding of American Poetry

Paperback, April 2009
Menorah for Athena by Stephen Fredman

A Menorah for Athena

Paperback, July 2001
Smile, Smile, Smile by Stephen Fredman

Smile, Smile, Smile

Paperback, January 1999