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American poetry

1996

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Antimodern, Modern, And Postmodern Millay: Contexts Of Revaluation, Cheryl Walker Jan 1996

Antimodern, Modern, And Postmodern Millay: Contexts Of Revaluation, Cheryl Walker

Scripps Faculty Publications and Research

In this chapter, Walker examines questions concerning renewed scholarly interest in Edna St. Vincent Millay toward the end of the twentieth century. Specifically, these questions center on whether to rethink the principles of establishing the canon of American literature--indeed, whether the poet changes literary fashions or literary fashions change the poet. Walker's answer is the latter, and her essay examines how Millay is different received through three different periods: antimodern, modern, and postmodern. She argues that whether a poet becomes central to literary study has less to do with the "quality" of the poetry than with complex cultural factors ...