Writing during the Disasters

Modes of Rendering Suffering in Contemporary Experimental American Poetry

‘Writing during the Disasters’ is devoted to conceptualizing the relation between suffering and poetic writing. This monograph investigates contemporary experimental American poetry which addresses forms of suffering that are largely entwined with structural dynamics. The book elaborates how particular poetic practices “materialize” and “write through” ongoing conditions of suffering which shape the present.

In its interaction with works by seven poets and one artist collective, this study mobilizes and interlaces a variety of critical theoretical approaches – from affect theory, queer theory, Afro-pessimism, Black feminism, and new materialisms to psychoanalysis, dialectical materialism, and deconstruction. Moreover, this study develops novel terminological renditions of the nexus between suffering and literary representation. Ultimately, ‘Writing during the Disasters’ also argues for “suffering” to be considered a valid and more prominent category of analysis in cultural and literary studies.