This text discusses the visual and graphic conventions in contemporary poetry in English. It defines contemporary poetry and its historical construction as a "seen object" and uses literary and social theory of the 1990s to facilitate the study. In examining how a poem is recognized, the interpretive conventions for reading it and how the spacial arrangement on the page is meaningful for contemporary poetry, the text takes examples from individual poems. There is also a focus on changes in manuscript conventions from Old to Middle English poetry and the change from a social to a personal understanding of poetic meaning from the late 18th through the 19th century.
About the author
Rosemary Huisman is senior lecturer in English and head of Semiotics at the University of Sydney.
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