Jerome Rothenberg on “The Symposium of the Whole”

Rothenberg’s Technicians of the Sacred has been central and essential to my understanding of what poetry is and can be since I first started teaching from it at the turn of the millennium. I find it difficult even to discuss poetry and poetics in an informed fashion with anyone unfamiliar with it, or with those equally expansive volumes, assembling poems for the millennium, that followed.

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Now, Technicians is being issued in a third edition, fifty years after the first. On this auspicious occasion, Jerome Rothenberg offers some words on the reissue and its timeliness, given the rise of ethnonationalisms, on the one hand, and the on-going extinctions of languages, their poetries, and speakers and singers, on the other. Linked is a talk on the new edition and ethnopoetics given recently at the The Faculty of Arts, The University of Melbourne.

Ignore at the peril to your own poetic spirit.

 

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