Jerome Rothenberg

University of Alabama Press series: discounts on McCaffery, McGann, Silliman, Mullen, Reed

Celebrating the Publication of Steve McCaffery’s The Darkness of the Present

 The Darkness of the Present: Poetics, Anachronism, and the Anomaly
Steve McCaffery
6 x 9 · 256 pages
ISBN: 978-0-8173-5733-7 · $34.95 $24.47 paper
ISBN: 978-0-8173-8642-9 · $34.95 $24.47 ebook

“This book raises important ethical/political issues for the practice of art in the twentieth century. The Darkness of the Present calls them to rigorous attention in a series of critical studies. It finishes in a deliberate move to stand back, in order to reflect on the issues from a cool critical vantage, like Tennyson’s poet at the end of The Palace of Art.”—Jerome McGann, author of Radiant Textuality: Literature after the World Wide Web and Are the Humanities Inconsequent?: Interpreting Marx’s Riddle of the Dog
Google boosk preview here.

Video portraits: Jerome and Diane Rothenberg

Jerome Rothenberg & the Burning Babe

Jerry and Diane come to our place for dinner. He had Susan had just collaborated on their fabulous Granary Book. The Burning Babe, so I asked Jerry about the central figure in the poem.

February 24, 2008
(mp4, 1 min. 36 sec., 18.2 mb)

Diane Rothenberg: Marshall Parkway & Other Figments of the Imagination

Diane grew up around Marshall Parkway in the Bronx. She talks about what's the same, what's different, and what is imagined.
February 24, 2008

Jerome Rothenberg's 'Poems and poetics' comes to J2

We at Jacket2 are pleased to announce that Jerome Rothenberg joins us a commentator. His previous postings to “Poems and Poetics” (heretofore a blogspot site) are all linked to his J2 commentary page, and he is now publishing new commentaries here:
http://jacket2.org/commentary/jerome-rothenberg.

Ernesto Livon-Grosman on Jerome Rothenberg's anthologies

Of Jerry’s many works, there is one that in spite of being just a very small fraction of all his books was key for my own experience as a reader.

 Anthologies are, with different degrees of intensity, the creation of a new field made out of preexisting elements; for the most part they define anew what was there before. Only once in a while an anthology can change not only what we know about poetry but the way we read beyond its own selection. Technicians of the Sacred: A Range of Poetries from Africa, America, Europe & Asia is that occurrence, a turning point that made visible what wasn’t before. Even more than an anthology it’s the blue print for a strategy, one that works his complexity up from multiple poetics to present at the same time, and without ever taking them apart, the particular and the whole.

M/E/A/N/I/N/G 25th Anniversary Edition: The Party

Mira Schor and Susan Bee

photos © Lawrence Schwartzwald. with thanks!

full web issue and pdf link here

launch at Accola Griefen Gallery on Dec. 16, 2011

Jerry Back Then by David Antin

[on Jerome Rothenberg's 80th birthday]

I met Jerome in the Spring of 1950 at a small party given by a Francophil professor, where seven or eight of us sat around with wine glasses under a modest collection of School of Paris paintings, making awkward conversation about modern art and poetry, when I noticed a short noble -browed guy in a green suit sitting across from me, his green eyes blazing  with the kind of disapproval I was feeling myself. This was not what we were looking for in modern art and poetry.  Some time in the fall we met again, realizing we were both trying  to become poets, and we started to hang out together, searching for signs of a living experimental scene, listening to folk music and jazz, and  checking out modern dance and music in a culture that believed artistic experiment and exploration were over. And it wasn’t till the late 50s that we caught up with cool jazz, Abstract Expressionism, John Cage, Wittgenstein, Fluxus and Pop.

Jerome Rothenberg: The real revolution is tragic

Left to right: Bruce Andrews and Sally Silvers performing in honor of Jerome Rothenberg's eightieth birthday on December 9, 2011; Jerome Rothenberg; the jacket of "White Sun Black Sun" published by Hawk's Well Press, 1960.

What follows is the text of a talk presented in honor of Jerome Rothenberg on the occasion of his 80th birthday, at an event held at CUNY Graduate Center in New York, on December 9, 2011.

If you were looking one way for new Americans in 1960, they would of course be found in Allen’s The New American Poetry.  But there was another way.  Jerome Rothenberg’s first book, New Young German Poets, published by City Lights in 1959, introduced American readers to a postfascist antifascist avant-garde that successfully “oppose[ed] the inherited dead world with a modern visionary language,” crucially among them, Paul Celan and Ingeborg Bachmann.

A few notes on the cultural cold war

Here's my introduction to a session featuring readings for the Rothenberg/Joris Poems for the Millenium back in 1998. In my 11-minute intro I tried to do something a little more than my usual brief, get-out-of-the-way segue to the main presenters. I wanted to say something in particular about Jerome Rothenberg's passage (as a young poet) through the cultural cold war. I make reference, for instance, to his discovery at the University of Michigan that in the 1950s Whitman was definitely on the outs — that Whitmanism in the 1950s was academically (if not also otherwise) dangerous. (To get to my comments about Rothenberg in the 50s, you can go immediately to a point halfway through the recording.)

1960: A first remembrance

On the New Year’s Eve between 1959 and 1960 I met Diane Wakoski — a night spent between Armand Schwerner’s place, whom we knew, and LeRoi Jones’s, who was still remote from us.  I had begun to move beyond my familiar New York quarters the year before — a trip by bus and car to dazzling San Francisco — and found a poetry world there (a world, in short) that beckoned us to enter. My first real book — translations, to start things off — had been published in 1959 by City Lights, and traveling home from San Francisco, I looked through the rear window of the bus and saw what seemed like a white sun, flat and cold, overhead. That was enough to serve as a title for White Sun Black Sun, a first book of my own that I would publish in the new year — 1960 — through Hawk’s Well Press, cofounded with David Antin a couple of years before.

The Holocaust & Why He Writes Poetry

Jerome Rothenberg

When Jerome Rothenberg visited Auschwitz, he experienced the keenest sense he had felt to that date that he should be writing poetry.

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