CFP: Poetry and Dialogism (1/5/07; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
Mara Scanlon
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Now accepting submissions for an edited volume of essays on Dialogism and Poetry.

Traditional concepts of poetry have frequently, and in the post-Romantic era nearly universally, precluded dialogic forms or intentions, adhering instead to an assumption of poetic monologism that focuses on a voice that is (in the case of the lyric) singular and personal and (in the case of the epic) unitary and centralizing. Thus critical practice has, perhaps even unwittingly, reinforced Mikhail Bakhtin's assertion that, although the poet may be aware "as a human being surrounded by living hetero- and polyglossia" of the relationship that exists between discourses (that is, of dialogism), "this relationship could not find a place in the poetic style of his work without destroying that style . . .and in the process turning the poet into a writer of prose." Though some scholars have written compelling critical arguments insisting that multivocality and dialogism are possible in poetry, that work has been scattered. But this scholarship is arguably more pressing than ever!
  as theorists of literature and ethics have, in Jeffrey T. Nealon's words, "increasingly turned to a dialogic, intersubjective understanding of ethics" and as various critics of the genre question its isolation from the public sphere and contemporary readership. Instituting its own dialogue among scholars, then, this volume aims to bring together substantial new essays in the field with some foundational ones to establish a solid and thought-provoking ground for future work by interrogating common but reductive models of poetry and opening new approaches to the teaching of and scholarship on the genre.

Some possible but not exclusive foci include theorizations of dialogic poetry's viability, ethics, or forms, and/or its relationship to traditional subgenres such as apostrophe and dramatic monologue and to theorists of dialogue such as Bakhtin, Levinas, Buber, or Celan. Discussions of specific, illustrative poems, poets, or genres are welcome, as are questions of answerability and extratextual dialogue. Papers using poetry not written in English must provide full in-text translation. Inquiries may be made to Please send essays and brief bios to Mara Scanlon / Associate Professor of English / University of Mary Washington / 1301 College Avenue / Fredericksburg, VA 22401. Deadline January 5, 2007.

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Received on Fri Apr 21 2006 - 11:07:02 EDT