Friday, December 9, 2011

Review - The Best British Poetry 2011

...this anthology [implies] that contemporary poetry is a single homogeneous entity. In reality, it isn't; there is a division between the poetry of, say, Carol Ann Duffy and that of Maggie O'Sullivan, and it's not just due to official acceptance or funding of one over the other; it's to do with the philosophies and assumptions which underlie the poetry; put simply, Duffy and O'Sullivan have different notions about what poetry is. Such divisions are intrinsic to the post-modern nature of poetry in the twenty-first century. To deny that there are 'schools' or movements in poetry, and instead to assert that it's all one, (and that the finest work will somehow rise to the top - as 'the best' tag implies) is to deny the very energies which drive much poetic production.

To read the complete review, click here


John B-R said...

At least somewhat apropos of your review is this news item, found at something called Compliancy

Hedge fund deters poetry prize nominee
06 December 2011 at 13:01

In an unusual event for the financial services, a poetry prize nominee has withdrawn her book from the competition because of the hedge fund sponsoring it, it has been reported.

Alice Oswald decided to pull her book Memorial out of the running for the TS Eliot prize after she discovered it was being backed by investment management firm Aurum Funds, revealed.

The poet suggested her reasons for this were ethical as she feels the literary tradition should revolt against hedge fund managers.

She said: “I’m uncomfortable about the fact that Aurum Funds, an investment company which exclusively manages funds of hedge funds, is sponsoring the administration of the Eliot Prize.

“I think poetry should be questioning not endorsing such institutions and for that reason I’m withdrawing for the Eliot shortlist,” the news provider quoted.

As such, the poet has passed up the potential to take home £15,000 in prize money, as well as £1,000 awarded to each shortlisted candidate.

In other news, a recent survey from Aksia showed 42 per cent of hedge funds agreed there was potential for Italy and Spain to default on their debt as the European economic crisis deepens.

Alan Baker said...

I have tremendous respect for Alice Oswald for doing that, and also for John Kinsella, who's followed suit. As it happens, they were undoubtedly the best two candidates on the list.