Poetic instruction
in Contemporary Olson
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In a related manner, the theories defining and defending composition by field Charles Olson presents in 'Projective Verse' are basically pedagogical allegories. The pedagogical aspect of Olson's projective poetics, in particular the emphasis upon stringent, self-determined control over the arrangement of his lines, is legible as a kind of prolepsis insofar as it closes down certain forms of critical examination in advance. Olson's proscriptions aim to collapse the difference between acts of reading and the possibly more self-reflective processes of study. Robert von Hallberg's The Scholar's Art is perhaps the best and most important example of a consenting approach to Olson's work. Olson's favoured Webster's Dictionary defines 'machine' as an 'assemblage of parts that transmits forces, motion and energy one to another in a predetermined manner'.

Editor: David Herd


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