Performing Poetry

Body, Place and Rhythm in the Poetry Performance


Over the past decades, the poetry performance has developed into an increasingly popular, diverse, and complex art form. In theoretical and critical discourse, it is referred to as performance poetry, spoken word poetry, and polipoesía; some theorists argue that it is an independent poetic genre, others treat it as a contemporary manifestation of oral poetry or of the poetry recital. The essays collected in this volume take up the challenge that the poetry performance poses to literary theory. Coming from a variety of disciplines, including Literary Studies, Theater Studies, and Area Studies, contributors develop new approaches and analytical categories for the poetry performance. They draw on case studies from a variety of contexts and in several languages, including Brazilian Portuguese, Dutch, Catalan, English, French, Galician, and Spanish. Essays are organized in three sections, which focus on critical and theoretical approaches to the poetry performance, on the mediatic hybridity of this art form, and on the ways in which the poetry performance negotiates locatedness through engagements with space and place. The structure of the volume intersperses essays on theory and analysis with self-reflexive essays from performance poets on their own performance practice.
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Biographical Note

Cornelia Gräbner is Lecturer in Hispanic Studies at Lancaster University, U.K. She has published on performance poetry, committed scholarship, and resistance poetry. Her current research interests focus on contemporary European, Latin American, and North American literature. She works on performance poetry, committed writing, literature of the alterglobalisation movement, literary engagements with the dirty wars in Latin America, and representations of megacities in literature. She is a member of the international network Poetics of Resistance.
Arturo Casas is Senior Lecturer in Literary Theory and coordinator of the Centre for Research on Emergent Cultural Practices and Processes at the University of Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain. His current fields of research are the debate on literary history, modern and postmodern aesthetic thought, contemporary essayistics, the Spanish Republican exile, and non-lyric poetry. His latest work, Resistance and Emancipation: Cultural and Poetic Practices, edited in collaboration with Ben Bollig, is forthcoming from Peter Lang. He is a member of the international network Poetics of Resistance.

Table of contents

Cornelia Gräbner and Arturo Casas: Introduction
Theorizing Performance Poetry: Critical and Analytical Views
Jonah Raskin: Allen Ginsberg, “Howl,” and the 6 Gallery Poetry Performance
Gaston Franssen: Stage Fever and Text Anxiety: The Staging of Poeticity in Dutch Performance Poetry since the Sixties
Jeffrey Manoel Pijpers: Artimanha, the Precise Moment of Being: Performance and Carnival in the Poetry of Brazil’s Nuvem Cigana
Cornelia Gräbner: “The Hurricane Doesn’t Roar in Pentameters”: Rhythmanalysis in Performed Poetry
Registers of Performance
Urayoán Noel: The Body’s Territories: Performance Poetry in Contemporary Puerto Rico
María do Cebreiro and Rábade Villar: Politics of Sound: Body, Emotion, and Sound in the Contemporary Galician Poetry Performance
Arturo Casas: Producing World and Remnant: Dialogue with Chus Pato
Anxo Abuín González: Poetry and Autofiction in the Performative “Field of Action”: Angélica Liddell’s Theater of Passion
Irina Garbatzky: Roberto Echavarren’s Atlantic Casino and Oír no es ver: The “Neobarocker” Body in Performance
Roberto Echavarren: My Life and Performances
Locations of Performance
Deirdre Osborne: “Set in Stone”: Lemn Sissay’s and SuAndi’s Landmark Poetics
SuAndi: Eartha Kitt Once Told Me
Mercè Picornell Belenguer: Heterotopical Routes through Barcelona: The Reshaping of Public Space in the “Galactic” Poetry of Jaume Sisa
Zoë Skoulding: Absent Cities: Text, Performance, and Heterotopia
Margalida Pons: New Loci in Contemporary Catalan Art and Poetry: Perejaume’s Performance of/on the Rural
The Contributors


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