Desire and Infinity in W. S. Merwin's Poetry (Hardcover)

Desire and Infinity in W. S. Merwin's Poetry By Dong Feng Cover Image

Desire and Infinity in W. S. Merwin's Poetry (Hardcover)

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In the first monograph on W. S. Merwin to appear since his death in 2019, Feng Dong focuses on the dialectical movement of desire and infinity that ensouls the poet's entire oeuvre. His analysis foregrounds what Merwin calls "the other side of despair," the opposite of humans' articulated personal and social agonies. Feng finds these presences in Merwin's evocations of what lingers on the edge of constantly updated socio-symbolic frameworks: surreal encounters, spiritual ecstasies, and abyssal freedoms. By examining Merwin's lifelong engagement with psychic fantasies, anonymous holiness, entities both natural and supernatural, and ghostly ancestors, Feng uncovers a precarious relation with the unarticulated, unrealized side of existence.

Drawing on theories from Lacan, Zizek, Levinas, and Heidegger, Desire and Infinity in W. S. Merwin's Poetry reads a metaphysical possibility into the poet's work at the intersection between contemporary poetics, philosophy, and psychoanalysis.
Feng Dong is associate professor of English at Qingdao University in China. His essays and reviews have appeared in College Literature, Critical Inquiry, Journal of Modern Literature, and other journals
Product Details ISBN: 9780807176115
ISBN-10: 0807176117
Publisher: LSU Press
Publication Date: December 15th, 2021
Pages: 222
Language: English