Senses Of Style: Poetry Before Interpretation by Jeff DolvenSenses Of Style: Poetry Before Interpretation by Jeff Dolven

Senses Of Style: Poetry Before Interpretation

byJeff Dolven

Paperback | January 3, 2018

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Style is everywhere, but it evades criticism—especially now, when an age of interpretation asks us to look right through it. And yet style does so much tacit work, telling time, telling us apart, telling us who we are. What place does it have among our moment’s favored categories of form, history, meaning? What do we miss if we fail to look at it, to talk about it?
            Senses of Style essays an answer, stylishly. An experiment in criticism, crossing four hundred years and written in four hundred brief, aphoristic remarks, it is a book of theory steeped in examples. It maps style’s significance by exploring the work and parallel lives of two men: Sir Thomas Wyatt, a poet and diplomat in the court of Henry VIII, and his admirer Frank O’Hara, the midcentury American poet, curator, and boulevardier. Starting with the question of why Wyatt’s work spoke so powerfully to O’Hara across the centuries, Jeff Dolven ultimately illuminates what we talk about when we talk about style, whether it’s in the sixteenth-century, the twentieth, or the twenty-first.
            Constructed not to fix but to follow its subject, to explain its movements, to explore and incite the appetites that make readers write and writers read, Senses of Style treats the interactions of lives and works, places and peers, theory and practice, past and present. It is a book that will invigorate poets, critics, and inquisitive readers alike.
Jeff Dolven teaches poetry and poetics at Princeton University and is the author of Scenes of Instruction. He is also an editor-at-large at Cabinet magazine.  
Title:Senses Of Style: Poetry Before InterpretationFormat:PaperbackDimensions:240 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.68 inPublished:January 3, 2018Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022651711X

ISBN - 13:9780226517117


Editorial Reviews

“‘Explanation is the enemy of style,’ Jeff Dolven writes. Senses of Style gives the lie to that aperçu.  Dolven offers us both a dazzling writerly object and a model: a ramifying meditation on Wyatt and O’Hara under the sign of surprising likenings, the matter of style. Conversable, witty, erudite, pyrotechnic: Dolven paradoxes and aphorizes his way equally into the depths and the shallows. With this startling, masterly, mesmerizing book, Dolven sentences us toward a brilliantly friendly ongoingness.”