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[Review Essay] Australian Contemporary Poetry single work   review   essay  
Issue Details: First known date: 2017... 2017 [Review Essay] Australian Contemporary Poetry
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'In the wake of Brexit and the rise of Donald Trumpism (with the underlining racisms and sexisms) Education has turned out to be the new Class divide i.e. a clash of the Ignorant verses the Enlightened. Seems, the Educated fear being ruled by the Ignorant & Know-Nothings, and the Less-Educated fear (as has always been the case) being governed, by the arrogance of intellectual snobs who know next to little-or-nothing of their lives and experiences. It seems (according to the pundits) that people in Britain and the USA are increasingly being shaped (and Voting) according to how long they spent at school. (Sending all the commentators back to their proletarian textbooks presumably). The ancient Greeks knew that for Democracy to work properly, you had to let the Have-Nots get their claws into the Haves every now and then. But with the creeping rise of Corporations, Globalisation, the closing down of local industries in preference to world markets etc. this is becoming less and less possible or likely. It isn’t so surprising when you realise that Economists (from Hayek to Friedman) are all of a piece; seriously believing that Democracy itself is the cause of our “economic ills” producing inflation (no less) at the expense of free-market economics. This new cultural divide is nowhere more obvious however than in the current anthology. The Editors proudly headline the title of their Editorial (on the first page) with the words “A Luminous Field” (with their haloes, presumably) unashamedly parading the “new paradigms” of Australian poetry. This Elitist attitude permeates a lot of Australian anthologies, albeit not as blatantly as this one. It would be instructive to do a statistical breakdown of who and how and how many of those poets in those anthologies (especially pre-1980s) were similarly Degreed.' (Introduction)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Long Paddock Questionable Characters vol. 77 no. 1 2017 11951507 2017 periodical issue 2017

Works about this Work

The Editors Respond: David Musgrave , Judy Johnson , Judith Beveridge , Martin Langford , 2017 single work essay
— Appears in: Long Paddock , vol. 77 no. 1 2017;

'Misreadingsand othering aside – did Π.Ο. actually read any of the poems, or did he just know they were wrong? – there are important issues raised by Π.Ο.’s review. It may be worth saying something about the most important – regarding the level of understanding that the reader brings to the poem. Poetry’s role has changed over the last century or two. Most of our stories are now told in other formats – novels, films, TV. Most of our declarations of desire or loss are now sung for us as pop songs (though not all: there are still great love poems). Most of our declarations of loyalty and tales of patriotism have, thankfully, receded into a past of bad newspaper verse, and earnest recitals. But poetry has continued to do some things better, perhaps, than any other art-form: to find clear ways of saying what is otherwise only partially understood, to weigh those articulations emotionally, and, sometimes, to make them sing. It works a frontier: not just of our understandings, but of our responses to them: a complex edge of meanings and the weight of meanings. We think Π.Ο. has completely missed the innovation, the distinctiveness and the radicalism of contemporary verse.' (Introduction)

The Editors Respond: David Musgrave , Judy Johnson , Judith Beveridge , Martin Langford , 2017 single work essay
— Appears in: Long Paddock , vol. 77 no. 1 2017;

'Misreadingsand othering aside – did Π.Ο. actually read any of the poems, or did he just know they were wrong? – there are important issues raised by Π.Ο.’s review. It may be worth saying something about the most important – regarding the level of understanding that the reader brings to the poem. Poetry’s role has changed over the last century or two. Most of our stories are now told in other formats – novels, films, TV. Most of our declarations of desire or loss are now sung for us as pop songs (though not all: there are still great love poems). Most of our declarations of loyalty and tales of patriotism have, thankfully, receded into a past of bad newspaper verse, and earnest recitals. But poetry has continued to do some things better, perhaps, than any other art-form: to find clear ways of saying what is otherwise only partially understood, to weigh those articulations emotionally, and, sometimes, to make them sing. It works a frontier: not just of our understandings, but of our responses to them: a complex edge of meanings and the weight of meanings. We think Π.Ο. has completely missed the innovation, the distinctiveness and the radicalism of contemporary verse.' (Introduction)

Last amended 26 Sep 2017 17:03:33
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