An exploration of poetry as an expression of biology
In The Necropastoral: Poetry, Media, Occults, poet Joyelle McSweeney presents an ecopoetics and a theory of Art that reflect such biological principles as degradation, proliferation, contamination, and decay. In these ambitious, bustling essays, McSweeney resituates poetry as a medium amid media; hosts “strange meetings” of authors, texts, and artworks across the boundaries of genre, period, and nation; and examines such epiphenomena as translation, anachronism, and violence. Through readings of artists as diverse as Wilfred Owen, Andy Warhol, Harryette Mullen, Roberto Bolaño, Aimé Césaire, and Georges Bataille, The Necropastoral shows by what strategies Art persists amid lethal conditions as a spectacular, uncanny force.
Joyelle McSweeney is Associate Professor of English at the University of Notre Dame. Her first collection of poetry, The Red Bird, was chosen by Allen Grossman to inaugurate the Fence Modern Poets Series in 2001. Her poetry, hybrid fiction and other prose, translations, and critical writings have appeared in journals such as the Boston Review, American Book Review, and boundary2. With Johannes Göransson, she publishes Action Books and Action, Yes, a press and web-quarterly dedicated to international writing and hybrid forms.