Saturday, December 19, 2009

Avant-Post archived online

The essay collection Avant-Post: The Avant-Garde under “Post-” Conditions (ed. Louis Armand, Prague: Litteraria Pragensia Books, 2006) has been archived online here. Apparently the hard copy of the book is now out of print, so it is good to see that it lives on in electronic format at least. The book contains an essay by me on experimental Irish poetry and the politics of the recent Irish poetry scene, “The Ancients Have Returned Among Us: Polaroids of 21st C. Irish Poetry.” So, if you never managed to order the book itself, you can now read it all for free online.

A blurb describing the book as a whole reads, “Avant-Post engages the question of whether or not avant-garde practice remains viable under the prevailing conditions of a whole series of ‘post-’ ideologies, from Post-Modernism and Post-Structuralism, to Post-Historicism, Post-Humanism and Post-Ideology itself.” Other contributors include Johanna Drucker, Lisa Jarnot, Christian Bök, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Robert Archambeau, Mairéad Byrne, R.M. Berry, Trey Strecker, Keston Sutherland, Robert Sheppard, Bonita Rhoads, Vadim Erent, Laurent Milesi, Esther Milne, and more.

The American Book Review describes Avant-Post this way: “The question at the heart of these sixteen essaysalternately theoretically demanding, impishly elusive, stylistically impacted, and wholly absorbingis this: what, in the context of contemporary politico-aesthetic practices, is the avant-garde, and how, if at all, can some version of it continue to exist in an historical moment when...everything is permitted, hence nothing is any longer possible?”

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