Mary Barnard, American Imagist

SUNY Press
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Uncovers a new chapter in the story of American
modernist poetry.


Perhaps best known for her outstanding translation
of Sappho, poet Mary Barnard (1909–2001) has until recently received little
attention for her own work. In this book, Sarah Barnsley examines Barnard’s
poetry and poetics in the light of her plentiful correspondence with Ezra Pound,
William Carlos Williams, and others. Presenting Barnard as a “late Imagist,”
Barnsley links Barnard’s search for a poetry grounded in native speech to
efforts within American modernism for new forms in the American grain. Barnsley
finds that where Pound and Williams began the campaign for a modern poetry
liberated from the “heave” of the iambic pentameter, Barnard completed it
through a “spare but musical” aesthetic derived from her studies of Greek metric
and American speech rhythms, channeled through materials drawn direct from the
American local. The first book on Barnard, and the first to draw on the Barnard
archives at Yale’s Beinecke Library, Mary Barnard, American Imagist
unearths a fascinating and previously untold chapter of twentieth-century
American poetry.

“Clearly structured and elegantly written, Mary
Barnard, American Imagist
far exceeds any act of routine scholarly
‘recovery.’ In addition to giving full recognition to Barnard’s superb skills as
a translator of Sappho, Sarah Barnsley also makes a convincing case for her
original poetic output and for her contribution to the evolution of American
free verse.” — Peter Nicholls, author of Modernisms: A Literary Guide, Second
Edition
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About the author

Sarah Barnsley is Lecturer in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Goldsmiths, University of London.
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Additional Information

Publisher
SUNY Press
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Published on
Dec 1, 2013
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Pages
196
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ISBN
9781438448572
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Language
English
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Genres
Literary Criticism / American / General
Literary Criticism / Poetry
Literary Criticism / Semiotics & Theory
Literary Criticism / Women Authors
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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