The Revolution in the Visual Arts and the Poetry of William Carlos Williams
The formation of Modernist literature took place in a cultural climate characterised by an unprecedented collaboration between painters, sculptors, writers, musicians and critics on both sides of the Atlantic. Within this multifaceted movement, William Carlos Williams is a paradigmatic case of a writer whose work was the result of a successful attempt at integrating ideas and concepts from the revolutionary visual arts. This book is a major step toward a fuller exploration of the connection between the visual arts and Williams’ concept of the Modernist poem and of his achievement in transcending an art-for-art’s-sake formalism to create poems which both reflect their own nature as a work of art and vividly evoke the world of that they are a part. As Williams’ repeatedly stressed, ‘It must not be forgot that we smell, hear and see with words and words alone and that with a new language we smell, hear and see afresh…’
List of illustrations; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Introduction; Prelude: Getting in touch; 1. 'A poem can be made of anything'; 2. Vortex: or, A thing is what it does; 3. The poem as a field of action; 4. Soothing the savage beast: cubist realism and the urban landscape; 5. The virgin and the dynamo; 6. The search for a synthetic form; 7. The poem on the page; Conclusion; Notes; Selected bibliography; Index.