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Affective MaterialitiesReorienting the Body in Modernist Literature$
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Kara Watts, Molly Volanth Hall, and Robin Hackett

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780813056289

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813056289.001.0001

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Flesh over Granite

Flesh over Granite

Walt Whitman’s Embodied Presence in William Carlos Williams’s “History”

Chapter:
(p.33) Flesh over Granite
Source:
Affective Materialities
Author(s):

Karen Guendel

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813056289.003.0002

Karen Guendel locates in William Carlos Williams’s poetry a slippage between body and text, catalyzed by the poem’s aesthetic preference for stone over flesh. Such poetry, Guendel’s essay suggests, is bound up in textual erotics wherein the text and reader perform a bodily encounter that gives life to one and pleasure to the other. Such material poetics foreground an embodiment of human life in environmental terms, through its material residues—in the reader’s lips, the book itself, and the stone memorial objects that clutter museum halls.

Keywords:   Body and text, Textual erotics, William Carlos Williams

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