poetry anthologies

poetry anthologies
   For many, their first meeting with poetry is the anthology, as school reader, GCSE or A-level set text. The selection principle in anthologies is rarely made explicit. Nevertheless this is how, unnoticing, readers begin to regard literature’s worth and value canonically. It is therefore important to interrogate the process of selection and justification. Further, some politicians, who have responsibility for curriculum direction, believe that encouraging or directing curriculum managers to prescribe their contents can promote an ‘approved’ poetic culture. A wide spectrum of anthologizing agendas exists: gendered, chronological, regional and national are all present. The reader must not only examine the selection of poets but the editorial principles expressed by the anthologizers’ introductions. For example, the almost total omission of women poets in earlier anthologies seems inexplicable, were it not in some cases deliberately and insultingly ‘justified’. There is, however, an important line of collections with claims to the term ‘key anthology’. It runs at least from Robert Conquest’s New Lines (1956) through Alfred Alvarez’s The New Poetry (1962) and Edward Lucie-Smith’s British Poetry Since 1945 (1970, revised 1985), to Blake Morrison and Andrew Motion’s Penguin Book of Contemporary British Poetry (1982), and on to Jeni Couzyn’s Bloodaxe Book of Contemporary Women Poets (1985) and The New British Poetry (1988), edited by Eric Mottram, Gillian Allnutt, Fred D’Aguiar and Ken Edwards. The latest is Bloodaxe’s The New Poetry Anthology (1993), edited by Michael Hulse, David Morley and David Kennedy. ‘New’ is the key word as each struggles to claim power and relevance for its anthologized poets. The anthologists reveal their desire to shock and surprise, claiming relevance and centrality. In the same paragraph of promotional comment, one anthology praises itself as, ‘the most controversial event in the poetry world for many years…’, and ends, ‘it has been taken up as a set text for many school and university courses’. In their confrontation with past and contemporary foes, anthology editors claim their selection’s victory. Nevertheless, the most worthwhile development has been the geographical spread of poetry presses with quirky anthologizing principles; almost every British region possesses at least one publisher of poetry. Bloodaxe in Newcastle upon Tyne and Carcanet in Manchester serve as exemplary models for many others.
   Further reading
    Longley, E. (1996) ‘Signposting the Century’, Poetry Review 86(1): 8–12.

Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture . . 2014.

Игры ⚽ Поможем написать курсовую

Look at other dictionaries:

  • List of poetry anthologies — This is a list of anthologies of poetry.A C*Anthology of Twentieth Century British and Irish Poetry *American Poetry Since 1950 *Book of Aneirin (c. 1265) Welsh medieval manuscript *Best American Poetry series (with links to articles on annual… …   Wikipedia

  • List of Japanese poetry anthologies — This is a list of significant Japanese poetry anthologies. Waka and Tanka pre Heian period chronicles* Kojiki ( Record of Ancient Matters ) completed in 712, Japan s first book, includes 113 poem songs. * Nihon Shoki ( Chronicles of Japan )… …   Wikipedia

  • Oxford poetry anthologies — The Oxford University Press published a long series of poetry anthologies, dealing in particular with British poetry but not restricted to it, after the success of the Oxford Book of English Verse (1900). The Oxford poetry anthologies ( Oxford… …   Wikipedia

  • Oxford period poetry anthologies — These are Oxford poetry anthologies of English poetry, which select from a given period. See also The Oxford Book of Twentieth Century English Verse. Contents 1 New Oxford Book of Seventeenth Century Verse (1991) 2 New Oxford Book of Eighteenth… …   Wikipedia

  • Oxford religious poetry anthologies — Several anthologies of religious poetry have been published by Oxford University Press. Contents 1 Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse 1.1 Poets in The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse 1.2 External links …   Wikipedia

  • Penguin poetry anthologies — The Penguin poetry anthologies, published by Penguin Books, have at times played the role of a third force in British poetry, less literary than those from Faber and Faber, and less academic than those from Oxford University Press. The Penguin… …   Wikipedia

  • Poetry.com — is a web site run by The International Library of Poetry, also known as the International Society of Poets and the International Poetry Hall of Fame,cite web url=http://www.sfwa.org/beware/contests.html title=Writer Beware: Contests and Vanity… …   Wikipedia

  • Poetry — This article is about the art form. For other uses, see Poetry (disambiguation). Literature Major forms Novel · Poem · Drama Short story · Novella …   Wikipedia

  • poetry —    It is a commonly acknowledged truism that reading and writing poetry are both valued and difficult exercises. Poetry has an important cultural position because it is often manifestly difficult, made so by the apparent obscurity of its… …   Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture

  • poetry in the 1990s —    In the middle of the decade, Neil Astley, one of British poetry’s most powerful publishers and poets, asked the question, ‘Is poetry the new rock ’n’ roll?’ Someone is always asking, ‘is X the new rock ’n’ roll?’; but it is instructive that… …   Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”