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Words’ Worth: What the Poet Does (2020)

English | September 3, 2020 | ISBN: 1501364537, 1501364529 | PDF | 160 Pages | 1.5 MB

Claudia Brodsky marshals her equal expertise in literature and philosophy to redefine the terms and trajectory of the theory and interpretation of modern poetry.

Taking her cue from Wordsworth’s revolutionary understanding of “real language,” Brodsky unfolds a provocative new theory of poetry, a way of looking at poetry that challenges traditional assumptions. Analyzing both theory and practice, and taking in a broad swathe of writers and thinkers from Wordsworth to Rousseau to Hegel to Proust, Brodsky is at pains to draw out the transformative, active, and effective power of literature. Poetry, she says, is only worthy of the name when it is not the property of the poet but of society, when it is valued for what it does.

Words’ Worth is a bold new work, by a leading scholar of literature, which demands a response from all students and scholars of modern poetry.