Jane Malcolm is an Assistant Professor of English at the Université de Montréal. Her work has appeared in Arizona Quarterly, Jacket2, Lemon Hound, and A. Bradstreet, and a co-edited edition of Laura Riding’s Contemporaries and Snobs was published by the University of Alabama’s Modern and Contemporary Poetics Series in 2014. She is currently working on a book about feminist ambivalence and modernist innovation in the work of H.D., Mina Loy, Laura Riding, and Gertrude Stein.
Authors | Jane Malcolm
Articles on Amodern by Jane Malcolm
Muriel Rukeyser’s Meta-Poetics and the Communal Soundscape
This paper addresses the creation of imagined communal soundscapes and a poetics and politics of audience exchange in the archival recording of Muriel Rukeyser’s 1969 SGWU reading. Rukeyser’s prefatory question to her audience, “How many of you have ever written a poem?” and the inevitable silence that follows highlight the importance of negative space in the phonotext. If the lack of sound (or incomplete silence) is a prime feature of the sonic archive, we can read the archival recording itself as an imaginary/poetic text. What is unspoken and uncaptured thus points to a critical lacuna in the study of this archive (exemplified by Rukeyser’s unanswered question), as well as to the possibilities for sonic insurgency it signals.