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The Age of Huts by Ron Silliman

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Publisher : University of California Press
Binding : Paperback
Pages : 324
Publication Date : 3/25/2020
Condition : BRAND NEW
Between the Age of Innocence and the Age of Experience comes The Age of Huts. This book brings together for the first time all of the poems in Ron Silliman's Age of Huts cycle, including Ketjak, Sunset Debris, The Chinese Notebook, and 2197, as well as two key satellite texts, Sitting Up, Standing, Taking Steps, and BART. Each poem offers a radically different approach toward using language to explore the world. One of the founding works of Language Poetry, The Age of Huts is about everything, more or less literally, as each sentence, even each phrase, embarks on its own narrative, linking together to form a large polyphonic investigation of contemporary life. From Ketjak, one of the first poems to employ "the new sentence," to 2197, a serial work that scrambles the vocabulary and grammar of its sentences, The Age of Huts questions everything we have known about poetry in order to see the world anew. From Publishers Weekly Starred Review. This new volume collects for the first time the four components of Silliman's seminal The Age of Huts, including one of the prose poems he is best known for, Ketjak. Silliman has taken on new guises since the original publications of these early works, especially as the author of the volumes-long The Alphabet and as inveterate blogger. This book shows a dynamic artist questioning nearly all the assumptions of English-language poetry. That he manages to dramatize the excitement of a very new way of thinking in an accessible way is a feat: no elitist head-in-the-clouds grandstanding here; Silliman writes in charismatic, direct sentences. "The Chinese Notebook" takes its primary structure from Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations—numbered paragraphs that ask questions about language and form while playfully operating through them—while "Sunset Debris" is a serial autobiography strangely punctuated by questions concerning sex: "Isn't it that certain forms of language, for example of erotic content, focus perception away from the words and the syntagmemic chain, a world suppressed in reference to another?" This volume makes available one of the few must-have works of American avant-garde poetry of the late-'70s. (Apr.) Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.