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Changing Subjects – Digressions in Modern American Poetry - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Changing Subjects: Digressions in Modern American Poetry

Srikanth Reddy


Digression is widely considered a mark of disordered or evasive discourse. Modern legal, philosophical, and political writing largely disavows this trope, regarding it as a departure from the model of rational exposition institutionalized under the Enlightenment. And yet, as the rhetorical figure of digression has grown increasingly marginalized within the decorum of public discourse, it has come to occupy a central position in the private discursive world of poetry. This book outlines an anatomy of “the excursus” within twentieth-Century American poetics; moving from aesthetics to the archive ... More

Keywords: poetry, American literature, digression, Modernism, Wallace Stevens, Marianne Moore, Frank O’Hara, Lyn Hejinian, John Ashbery

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780199791026
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199791026.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Srikanth Reddy, author
University of Chicago