The Birth-Mark: Essays

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New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publish Date
5.9 X 0.8 X 8.9 inches | 0.65 pounds
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About the Author

Susan Howe has won the Bollingen Prize, the Frost Medal, and the Griffin Award. She is the author of such seminal works as Debths, ThatThis, TheMidnight, MyEmilyDickinson, TheQuarry, and TheBirthmark.


Monomania has its rewards--an incantatory power that shines through.
Invaluable--a reconnaissance mission in language and history.--John Palattella
An astonishing work re-presenting the American past, its history, literature, texts, and critics. At once gnomic and lucid, grave and scintillating--passionate [with] fierce originality.--Rachel Blau DuPlessis
We workday scholars must not be intimidated by this scholar-poet's fierce critical exactitudes. Howe's is a critical model for our schooling, a procedure and an ethos well worth study, opposition, imitation, revision. 'I am heading toward certain discoveries.' Not knowledge, or what Howe so brilliantly explores under the name 'Sovereignty, ' but exploration.--Jorome McGann
Howe is among the most articulate and inventive writers we have, and cements her eminent position in a lineage of pedagogical poets of the United States. She instructs by intuitive connections between disparate strands. Her books continue to reveal possibilities in the most out-of-the-way texts. This library cormorant and her daring trespasses remain as shocking and singular as ever.--Jonathan Creasy
The fabled violence of American patrimony is here tracked and qualified by brilliantly perceptive readings. Susan Howe, herself 'a library-cormorant' in Coleridge's phrase, brings to her task the powers of a major poet and the adamant measure of the 'Other' she, as all women, have been forced to be. This remarkable book is vivid testimony of that voice we can no longer silence.--Robert Creeley
The Birth-mark flashes out the figure of the Poet who stands behind Howe's poems--a figure who is, I have come to believe, at the heart of her achievement--and it gives a spirited lesson in how important essays are.--Eric Murphy Selinger