Language-Centered Poetry in the USA and in Russia: Trajectories of Interaction
- УДК / UDK: 82-1
- Author: Vladimir V. Feshchenko
- About the author:
Vladimir V. Feshchenko, Doctor Hab. in Philology, Senior Researcher, Institute of Linguistics of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Bolshoy Kislovsky pereulok 1, building 1, 125009 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1323-4220
To date, it becomes obvious that “language writing” is one of the largest trends in American literature and poetic thought of the last decades, and among the avant-garde trends, it is probably the most significant, extensive and innovative. American literature has spawned several significant schools and communities over the 20th century, from Imagists and beatniks to the San Francisco Renaissance and the New York school. Language poetry in this row, on the one hand, is an equally powerful literary movement (in the number of authors, published books, magazines, etc.), but on the other hand it is marked not so much by collectively shared aesthetic principles (as in the case of objectivists or Black Mountain poets), as by the general ideology of poetic work with language as a social institution and an aesthetic medium. The paper analyzes the points of divergencies and convergencies in American and Russian “language-centered writing.” The linguistic concepts of Russian Futurism (“the word as such,” “language breeding,” etc.) and Russian Symbolism (A. Bely’s “poetry of language”) have made their way — through the theory of Russian Formalism — to the theories of American language poets of the 1970s. The study looks more closely into how this cultural transfer exactly happened. Apart from that, this study juxtaposes the language-related concepts in the theory and practice of Russian Conceptualists and Metarealists, on the one hand, and the conceptual writing of American language poetry. These literary movements, as this paper claims, are part of the general linguistic turn which manifested itself in poetic theory and experiment in several phases over the 20th century.
- Keywords: language poetry, linguocentrism, Russian avant-garde, cultural transfers, metarealism, conceptualism.
- For citation:
Feshchenko, Vladimir. “Language-Centered Poetry in the USA and in Russia: Trajectories of Interaction.” Literature of the Americas, no. 12 (2022): 66–101. https://doi.org/10.22455/2541-7894-2022-12-66-101