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Attention Equals LifeThe Pursuit of the Everyday in Contemporary Poetry and Culture$
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Andrew Epstein

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199972128

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199972128.001.0001

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The Crisis of Attention, Everyday-Life Theory, and Contemporary Poetry

The Crisis of Attention, Everyday-Life Theory, and Contemporary Poetry

(p.41) 1 The Crisis of Attention, Everyday-Life Theory, and Contemporary Poetry
Attention Equals Life

Andrew Epstein

Oxford University Press

This chapter argues that a reinvigorated poetics of the everyday has arisen in response to the crisis of attention that characterizes contemporary culture. This poetics has given rise to a powerful desire to reconnect with daily life that the author refers to as “everyday hunger.” The chapter examines some of the forms this hunger takes in culture and poetry, and explores theories of everyday life—associated with thinkers including Lefebvre, de Certeau, Wittgenstein, Heidegger, James, and Cavell. The chapter also explores the relationship between everyday-life aesthetics and the problem of attention, examining its connection to poetry and the ethics of attention it cultivates.

Keywords:   theories of everyday life, Henri Lefebvre, pragmatism, attention, ethics

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