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Book Information: Angel of History, the

Angel of History, the (1994) [Collection]
by Carolyn Forché Rating: No votes (Rate!)
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Summary (From the publisher):

Placed in the context of twentieth-century moral disaster - war, genocide, the Holocaust, the atomic bomb - Forche's third collection of poems is a meditation on memory, specifically on how memory survives the unimaginable. The poems reflect the effects of such experience: the lines, and often the images within them, are fragmented, discordant. But read together, these lines become a haunting mosaic of grief, evoking the necessary accommodations human beings make to survive what is unsurvivable. These are personal poems, poems startling in their honesty and humility, poems that bear witness rather than explain or resolve. Carolyn Forche describes her book in a note to the reader: "The Angel of History is not about experiences. It is for me the opening of a wound, the muffling and silence of a decade, and it is also a gathering of utterances that have lifted away from the earth and wrapped it in a weather of risen words. These utterances issue from my own encounter with the events of this century but do not represent 'it.' The first-person, free-verse, lyric-narrative poem of my earlier years has given way to a work which has desired its own bodying forth: polyphonic, broken, haunted, and in ruins, with no possibility of restoration." An ambitious and compelling collection, The Angel of History may also be groundbreaking. As poets have always done, Forche attempts to give voice to the unutterable, using language to keep memory alive, relive history, make tracks in an empty field, and link the past with the future.

Original title: The Angel of History
Original languages: English


Genre: PoetryVerse

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Edition #1: Angel of History, the

Angel of History, the (1994)
Edition Details:

Language: English

  • "A dark, richly textured, complicated work. . . [The Angel of History] is that great rarity, an altogether new thing." Liz Rosenberg - Boston Globe
  • "I don't think I have ever come across a poem of such length that is nevertheless so beautifully transparent and haunting." James Merrill
  • "The poignant cri de couer of this singular work most affect all who have an integrity still possible in this painfully despairing time." Robert Creeley
  • "The Angel of History is instantly recognizable as a great book, the most humanitarian and aesthetically 'inevitable' response to a half century of atrocities that has yet been written in English." Calvin Bedient - The Threepenny Review
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Manifested in:

Angel of History, the (1994)

ISBN: 0060925841

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