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Poetry and Language
The Linguistics of Verse


  • Date Published: September 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108453066

£ 19.99

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About the Authors
  • Michael Ferber's accessible introduction to poetry's unusual uses of language tackles a wide range of subjects from a linguistic point of view. Written with the non-expert in mind, the book explores current linguistic concepts and theories and applies them to a variety of major poetic features. Equally appealing to linguists who feel that poetry has been unjustly neglected, the broad field of investigation touches on meter, rhyme (and other sound effects), onomatopoeia, syntax, meaning, metaphor, style, and translation, among others. Close study of poetic examples are mainly in English, but the book also focuses on several French, Latin, Greek, German, and Japanese examples, to show what is different and far from inevitable in English. This original, and unusually wide ranging study, delivers an engaging and often witty summary of how we define what poetry is.

    • Presents an accessible study of poetry's use of language that appeals to a broad spectrum of readers, from the non-expert to the more experienced student of poetry or linguistics
    • Investigates a wide range of poetic features alongside current concepts and theories in linguistic studies
    • Explores examples of poetry in a range of languages, mainly English but also French, Latin, Greek, German, and Japanese
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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108453066
    • length: 282 pages
    • dimensions: 227 x 152 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • contains: 9 b/w illus. 8 tables 1 music example
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Meter and the syllable
    3. Rhyme
    4. Onomatopoeia and sound symbolism
    5. Unusual word order and other syntactic quirks in poetry
    6. The meaning of a poem
    7. Metaphor
    8. Translating poetry
    Appendix: on quantity and pitch
    Works cited

  • Author

    Michael Ferber, University of New Hampshire
    Michael Ferber is Professor Emeritus at the University of New Hampshire. His previous publications include Romanticism: A Very Short Introduction (2010), The Cambridge Introduction to British Romantic Poetry (Cambridge, 2012), and A Dictionary of Literary Symbols (Cambridge, 3rd edition, 2017).

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