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Writing in Real Time
Emergent Poetics from Whitman to the Digital

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Part of Cambridge Studies in American Literature and Culture

  • Author: Paul Jaussen, Lawrence Technological University, Michigan
  • Date Published: September 2017
  • availability: Not yet published - available from September 2017
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107195318

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About the Authors
  • From Walt Whitman to the contemporary period, the long poem has been one of the more dynamic, intricate, and yet challenging literary practices of modernity. Addressing those challenges, Writing in Real Time combines systems theory, literary history, and recent debates in poetics to interpret a broad range of American long poems as emergent systems, capable of adaptation and transformation in response to environmental change. Due to these emergent properties, the long poem performs essential cultural work, offering a unique experience of history that remains valuable for our rapidly transforming digital age. Moving across a broad range of literary and theoretical texts, Writing in Real Time demonstrates that the study of emergence can enhance literary scholarship, just as literature provides unique insights into emergent properties, making this book a key resource for scholars, graduate students, and undergraduate students alike.

    • Offers a new framework for thinking about the American long poem across periods, making it an important supplement to prior studies that tend to focus on one period or one tradition of the long poem
    • Combines close reading of individual texts with a larger argument about poetic form, making theoretical arguments and author-centric arguments at the same time
    • The book is pitched to a general academic audience, serving as a useful synthesis of poetics scholarship and systems-thinking, introducing scholars in poetics to work in systems theory, and vice versa
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This extraordinary book shows us exactly how the dynamics of the long poem enable the form, in Pound's phrase, to 'include history.' Jaussen develops a suite of basic concepts that make possible revelatory readings of key works, and a new understanding of modern poetry's most ambitious project.' Michael Clune, Case Western Reserve University, Ohio, and author of Writing Against Time (2013) and American Literature and the Free Market, 1945–2000 (Cambridge, 2010)

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2017
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107195318
    • length: 236 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 158 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.48kg
    • availability: Not yet published - available from September 2017
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: the poetry of emergence
    2. Emergent America: Walt Whitman's enactive democracy
    3. Emergent vocabulary: Ezra Pound's translation machine
    4. Emergent history: Charles Olson's housekeeping
    5. Emergent midrash: Rachel Blau DuPlessis glosses modernism
    6. Emergent sounds: Nathanial Mackey's 'post-expectant futurity'
    7. Conclusion: emergent poetics and the digital.

  • Author

    Paul Jaussen, Lawrence Technological University, Michigan
    Paul Jaussen is an Assistant Professor of Literature at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield, Michigan. His research covers nineteenth- and twentieth-century literature, with a particular focus on poetics and literary theory. His essays and reviews have appeared in New Literary History, Contemporary Literature, the Journal of Modern Literature, William Carlos Williams Review, Jacket2, and The Volta.

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