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How does a poem mean? (1st edition) by John…
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How does a poem mean? (1st edition) (1959)

by John Ciardi

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Has anyone else noticed that this book is filled with examples of excellent poetry that are all, with the exception of a few from Dickinson, written by men, while most of the examples of poor poetry are written by women? And some of the examples of excellence are truly misogynistic pieces on the cruelty and deceptive beauty of women? Am I alone here? I know it was published in 1959, but really? REALLY?!

The guy clearly knows his craft, and there are some excellent pieces of guidance in here, but his obvious bias against women poets has become tiresome.

Not to mention this gem from page 2, in which he bemoans America's sports-obsessed culture in comparison with the literary culture of other countries: "...even retarded boys in the United States are capable of reciting endlessly detailed football stories..."

This era I inhabit sure ain't perfect, but I am so glad I don't live in 1959. ( )
  woolgathering | Apr 4, 2017 |
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