Christine Burgin series

One of the preeminent poets of her generation, Susan Howe is known for innovative verse that crosses genres and disciplines in its theoretical underpinnings and approach to history.
The Poetry Foundation

A rapturous hymn to discoveries and archives

Spontaneous Particulars

Nonfiction by Susan Howe

Editions: Clothbound

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Clothbound (published October 14, 2014)

ISBN
9780811223751
Page Count
64

Susan Howe

American poet and essayist

One of the preeminent poets of her generation, Susan Howe is known for innovative verse that crosses genres and disciplines in its theoretical underpinnings and approach to history.
The Poetry Foundation
A near-mystical account of a subject researching and reveling in the sanctuary of the library, alongside the forceful expression of a modernist will, one collecting the detritus of effaced histories to construct a shimmering new plane of knowledge and engagement.
The Brooklyn Rail
As they evolve, electronic technologies are radically transforming the way we read, write, and remember. The nature of archival research is in flux….While I realize that these technologies offer new and often thrilling possibilities for artists and scholars, ​Spontaneous Particulars: The Telepathy of Archives ​is a collaged swan song to the old ways.
—Susan Howe
Susan Howe has often referred to herself as a “library cormorant” but in this gorgeously produced book, her extraordinary telepathy of archives is the very opposite of passive absorption. Hers is a carefully constructed textile world, where the spirit of Keats’ “Ode to a Nightingale” enters Henry James’ Milly Theale, a world where William Carlos Williams’s prescription blanks oddly echo the fragments of Emily Dickinson, and where Charles Sanders Peirce’s “blue” doodles open up the charged lexicon of Jonathan Edwards. Howe knows that text never reflects or merely matches image; each page constructs its own ghostly skein to be woven into what becomes an increasingly mysterious figure in the carpet. What begins as archival study becomes nothing less than mesmerism.
—Marjorie Perloff
Howe unlocks.
—Ben Lerner
A haunter of archives, for whom manuscripts and marginalia and indexes are muses, Susan Howe often works with the materials she finds there. The result may be a textual collage or a ground-breaking work of criticism, or both.
The Paris Review