“Some of the factors that have contributed to the drastic decline of the art of bringing phrases to closure are clear enough. They include the wholesale de-formalization of poetry in our time and the consequent premium placed on enjambment; our dogmatic insistence on open-endedness and the bland tones of everyday language; our predilection for understatement and uneasiness about rhetorical display; our aversion to affirmation and our cult of the whisper.”  -Robert Pogue Harrison

The New York Review of Books, Volume 59, Number 2 · February 9, 2012. ‘The Book From Which Our Literature Springs’, by Robert Pogue Harrison.



Filed under Etymology, Quotes

4 responses to “enjambment

  1. I’m not sure I entirely agree with this statement, but I love the phrase, cult of the whisper. That seems like a lovely way to bring a phrase to closure.

  2. Thanks for reading! The review is looking at the influence of King James Bible on the fourth centennial of its publication. For me his comments are almost a metaphor for what ails humankind. Do you get the NYRB? Let me know as it would make a great gift for a certain Taurean I know.

  3. How funny that my name didn’t accompany my comment. I didn’t realize that when I left it. How did you figure out om2011students was me? I don’t get NYRB, but have considered it. Do you get n+1? I was going to get that for you for your birthday.

  4. I’m a frequent visitor to the om2011students blog.

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