7/26/2007

David Yezzi interview quote

Interviewer: How politicized is poetry nowadays? How much has politicization of the academy corrupted the art form?

David Yezzi: I recently participated in an exchange with another poet in the June issue of Poetry magazine in which, to my surprise, a number of old political hobbyhorses got paraded around the paddock.

The political entrenchment of the academy has been reported in all it’s gruesomeness by my colleague Roger Kimball, editor of The New Criterion. I would only add that things are equally entrenched from an aesthetic standpoint. It’s not that masters degrees in poetry, which function as excellent cash cows for universities across the country, are completely worthless. I have one myself, and I can say that they are only almost completely worthless. They do have one serious downside however: students seeking preferment begin to write like their teachers. They then graduate with a degree that is really only useful to teach creative writing in a program much like the one from which they have just graduated. Their students learn to write like they do and so on. This has had quite a deadening effect on contemporary poetry in general, I think.


read the full interview here.

4 comments:

Ag said...

We don't need no education...We don't need no thought control...

I'm going to take a camera course this weekend though :)

Also, I didn't comment, but I really liked the excerpt from ee cummings that you put up about thinking about feeling and knowing about feeling vs just feeling. it resonated and stuff.

rob taylor said...

you're nothing if not efficient, ag.

Ag said...

What does that mean? I'm confused. I'm also not taking the course - it was cancelled.

rob taylor said...

i was referring to your ability to comment on two posts at once. ;)

you and marta should hunt out camera courses together...