William Carlos Williams Review

Provides articles on the life and work of William Carlos Williams and his literary milieu, including the relationship of Williams and his contemporaries to the artistic, philosophical, social, and political movements of the day.

Articles

Vol. 31, No. 1, Spring

Remembering William Carlos Williams: Hugo Rodríguez Alcalá (1917-2007)
On Tuesday afternoon, April 22, 1958, three men, two in their early forties, the third ten years younger, knocked on the front door of William Carlos Williams's Victorian home at 9 Ridge Road in Rutherford, New Jersey, where the Williamses had lived...
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Walter Raleigh, through John Milton, According to William Carlos Williams
The US-American poet, writer, and self-fashioned country doc- tor William Carlos Williams expressly refers to the also eclec- tic Walter Raleigh (1552-1619) in two works: in the chapter "Sir Walter Raleigh" in his early collection of historical essays...
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Ivory Towers and War Machines: William Carlos Williams and the Humanities under Fire
[The world of art] is a battleground, not a bland Elysium, but at the same time we will realize that the battle is taking place within a world that can and does contain it. It is a battleground where differences of emotional and intellectual opinion...
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Media, Mimesis, and the Figure of the Orphan in William Carlos Williams's Life along the Passaic River
"The finest short stories are those that raise, in short, one particular man or woman, from that Gehenna, the newspapers, where at last all men are equal, to the distinction of being an individual. To be responsive not to the ordinances of the herd (Russia-like)...
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La Invención Necesaria
La invención necesaria. William Carlos Williams. Ensayos, cartas, poemas, selección, traducción, prólogo y notas de Juan Antonio Montiel. Santiago, Chile: Ediciones Universidad Diego Portales, 2013. 311 pp. $15,000 pesos / $31.00 US. (paper).Prior to...
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Transatlantic Avant-Gardes: Little Magazines and Localist Modernism
Transatlantic Avant-Gardes: Little Magazines and Localist Modernism. Eric B. White. Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP, 2013. xii + 270 pp. $112 (cloth).There are moments when you read a critical study that you know it's something special, that it will garner a...
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Among the Nightmare Fighters: Americans Poets of World War II
Among the Nightmare Fighters: Americans Poets of World War II. Diederik Oostdijk. Columbia, SC: U South Carolina P, 2011. 304 pp. $49.95 (hardcover).Among the Nightmare Fighters offers an illuminating if partial survey of World War II's importance in...
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Visiting Dr. Williams: Poems Inspired by the Life and Work of William Carlos Williams
Visiting Dr. Williams: Poems Inspired by the Life and Work of William Carlos Williams. Eds. Shelia Coghill and Thom Tammaro. Foreword by Paul Mariani. Iowa City: U of Iowa P, 2011. xxii + 228 pp. $24.95 (paper).Visiting Dr. Williams is an anthology of...
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The Ethics of William Carlos Williams's Poetry
The Ethics of William Carlos Williams's Poetry. Ian D. Copestake. Rochester, NY: Camden House, 2010. 180 pp. $34.95 (cloth).One of the most famous credos of modernist poetry is Williams's dis- tinctively succinct "No ideas but in things." No statement...
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The Verse Revolutionaries: Ezra Pound, H.D. and the Imagists
The Verse Revolutionaries: Ezra Pound, H.D. and the Imagists. Helen Carr. London: Jonathan Cape; 2009. 982 pp. £30.00 (hardback).If you are a scholar of Anglo-American literary modernism and an American, this is the most important work in your field...
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Vol. 28, No. 1/2, Spring

A New Mimesis: Unbinding Textual Possibilities in William Carlos Williams's "Composition"
COMPOSITION," lyric XII from Spring and All (1 923), is one of the more aggressively fragmentary of William Carlos Williams's improvisational lyrics:The red paper boxhinged with clothis linedinside and outwith imitationleatherIt is the sunthe tablewith...
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"Betwixt and Between": Duchamp and Williams on Words and Things
"Painting Took the Lead"THE relationship of the "sister arts" (painting and poetry, literature and art) in the twentieth century is complex and variable. Painters are influenced by literature; writers are inspired by the visual arts; single artists produce...
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"This Rhetoric Is Real": William Carlos Williams's Recalibration of Language and Things
Consider the case of William Carlos Williams as an example of how the limitations of early modernism became painfully evident.- CHARLES ALTIERI, The Art of Twentieth-Century American Poetry: Modernism and AfterThere is no need to explain or compare....
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"Allow Intelligence to Survive": Life's Language in Williams and Tzara
In Mexico, since we are talking about Mexico, there is no art: things are made for use. And the world is in perpetual exaltation.- ANTONIN ARTAUD (11)THERE is a famous passage in William Carlos Williams's Autobiography in which he recollects his visit...
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The Dadaist Prose of Williams and Cummings: A Novelette and [No Title]
ONE of the most famous and polemic catalogues in postmodern theory was proposed by lhab Hassan in his study of postmodernism:These often quoted dichotomies have always attracted my attention, particularly the first one, as it represents a Damocles sword...
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The Poet's Place: William Carlos Williams and the Production of an American Avant-Garde
Poets in ExileMODERNITY'S grand narratives institute their own radical dismantling" (510). Susan Stanford Friedman's conception of modernity in the previous sentence captures in miniature what many other critics have noted: modernity is overreaching,...
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From Modernism to Postmodernism: American Poetry and Theory in the Twentieth Century
From Modernism to Postmodernism: American Poetry and Theory in the Twentieth Century. Jennifer Ashton. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2005. x+201 pp. $80.00 (cloth).Barrett Watten: There's a real confusion in American criticism as to how close the Formalists...
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Stevens, Williams, Crane and the Motive for Metaphor
Stevens, Williams, Crane and the Motive for Metaphor. Robert Rehder. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005. xxv+207 pp. $79.95 (cloth).Robert Rehder, who teaches at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland, has written a clear, straightforward, reasonable...
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Hart Crane: After His Lights
Hart Crane: After His Lights. Brian Reed. Tuscaloosa: U of Alabama P, 2006. viii+312 pp. $65.00 (cloth).This good book about Hart Crane's poetry - the first monograph on Crane in over ten years, and the first since Langdon Hammer's big edited volume...
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Mama Dada: Gertrude Stein's Avant-Garde Theatre
Mama Dada: Gertrude Stein's Avant-Garde Theatre. Sarah BayCheng. New York: Routledge, 2005. xii+207 pp. $26.95 (paper).Sarah Bay-Cheng's Mama Dada: Gertrude Stein's Avant-Garde Theatre begins again the ongoing debate about the simultaneously praised...
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Modern Glass: How Williams Reframed Duchamp's Window
IN a 1924 letter published in the transatlantic review, Mina Loy chastises those readers who ignore the impact of modernity and modernism:Modernism is a prophet crying in the wilderness of stabilized culture that humanity is wasting its aesthetic time....
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The Art of Twentieth-Century American Poetry: Modernism and After
The Art of Twentieth-Century American Poetry: Modernism and After. Charles Altieri. Oxford: Blackwell, 2006. 245 pp. $89.95 (cloth).Charles Altieri's book is richly rewarding, but it is also frustrating. The frustration stems in large part from its identity,...
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Marcel Duchamp
Marcel Duchamp. Caroline Cros. Trans. Vivian Rehberg. London: Reaktion Books, 2006. 1x+199 pp. $16.95 (paper).Most readers of the William Carlos Williams Review will be familiar with the by now infamous story of Williams's first encounter with the avant-garde...
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Vol. 27, No. 2, Fall

"Thinking/ of the Freezing Poor": The Suburban Counter-Pastoral in William Carlos Williams's Early Poetry
"The Voice of April" may not be the worst poem written in the twentieth century, but a list of the one hundred worst would seem somehow incomplete without it. Written by Madison Cawein, a prolific early-twentieth century American poet known as the "Keats...
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Critical Portraits: Working-Class Corporeality in Williams's Poems of the 1930s
Recent studies of William Carlos Williams have begun to present us with what can be called a sociological Williams. Not since Mike Weaver's (1971) discussion of Williams's involvement with the American Social Credit Movement and the Committee of Cultural...
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Forms of Need: William Carlos Williams in the Radical Thirties Little Journals
I. "During a Time Like This:"1 Framing a Thirties ModernistIn the fall of 1933, William Carlos Williams's short story "Jean Beicke" headlines the first issue of Blast: A Magazine of Proletarian Short Stories, a little magazine that became a forerunner...
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The MLA Seminar Papers on Williams and Sound
At a breakfast meeting in Washington, D. C, in December 2005, Marjorie Perloff, incoming President of the Modern Language Association, announced to the two dozen members present her initiative for seminars on poetry and sound at the 2006 meeting in Philadelphia....
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Some Orchestrations of the American Idiom
After reading "To Greet a Letter-Carrier" and "At the Bar" at Harvard in December 1951, William Carlos Williams commented, "I think that poetry comes out of the language that is spoken on the street."1 Note that Williams said "poetry comes out of the...
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The Voices in "The Desert Music"
William Carlos Williams wrote "The Desert Music" for a fifteen-minute performance at the Sanders Theater at Harvard in June 1951. It was composed in the weeks following his first stroke at the end of March, a few months after his return from a long reading...
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Structural Surprise in the Triadic-Line Poems
William Carlos Williams insisted that his triadic-line verse derives from some evanescent quality of the spoken language and more specifically from the characteristics of American speech.1 This essay will focus on how recent advances in an area of linguistics...
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Hearing Is Believing : The Recordings of Williams
Hearing William Carlos Williams read his poems is a great gain. But setting his recorded reading alongside the printed text of the poem can be even greater. As Hugh Kenner suggests in his own recorded comment, a vital interplay is at work: "It seems...
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The Novel and the Obscene: Sexual Subjects in American Modernism
The Novel and the Obscene: Sexual Subjects in American Modernism. Florence Dore. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2005. ix+1 67. $50.00 (cloth).In The Novel and the Obscene: Sexual Subjects in American Modernism, Florence Dore sets out to redefine...
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The Provincetown Players and the Culture of Modernity
The Provincetown Players and the Culture of Modernity. Brenda Murphy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005. xix. + 282 pp. $85.00 (cloth).In the late Fall of 1916, the young physician and aspiring poet William Carlos Williams, married four years...
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Vol. 27, No. 1, Spring

Essaying Democracy: The Post/Modern Intertexts of Kingston, Rodriguez, and Williams
Unity is the shallowest, the cheapest deception of all composition. . . . [A]bility in an essay is multiplicity, infinite fracture, the intercrossing of opposed forces establishing any number of opposed centres of stillness. So the history of Virginia...
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The Erotics of Close Reading: Williams, Demuth, and "The Crimson Cyclamen"
Williams scholars who have focused on his relationship to the visual arts have tended towards formalistic analysis. Here is James Guimond:When Williams-particularly in the 1920's-or Demuth dealt with subjects they admired such as flowers, their reaction...
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Carlos Williams, Actor
As Edith Heal reports, "The author used the signature William C. Williams in this first book; all others are signed William Carlos Williams. He explained that he deliberated over this for some time, thought first of using W. C. Williams, realized the...
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"It Carries the Battle Forward": An Unpublished Letter from William Carlos Williams to Edwin J. Becker, Prisoner-Poet
While many Americans expatriated to Paris or London in the first half of the twentieth century to become writers, Edwin J. Becker waited until he was incarcerated in the New Jersey State Prison at Trenton from 1944 to 1948 for deceptive practices. Becker...
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The Stamp of Class: Reflections on Poetry & Social Class
The Stamp of Class: Reflections on Poetry & Social Class. Gary Lenhart. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press, 2006. xviii + 152 pp. $19.95 (paper).Poet and critic Gary Lenhart offers an accessible and engaging critical look at poetry and social...
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The Voice of the Poet: Willliam Carlos Williams
The Voice of the Poet: Willliam Carlos Williams. Ed. J. D. McClatchy. New York: Random House, 2005. 60-minute compact disc + 64-page booklet. $19.95.It is good to see William Carlos Williams among the poets included in the Voice of the Poet series, which...
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Six Modernist Moments in Poetry
Six Modernist Moments in Poetry. David Young. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 2006. xiv + 175 pp. $29.95 (cloth)."These are six rooms," David Young tells us by way of introduction, "in my gallery of modernist poetry" (ix). Young's latest book, Six...
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Critics and Poets on Marianne Moore: "A Right Good Salvo of Barks"
Critics and Poets on Marianne Moore: "A Right Good Salvo of Barks." Ed. Linda Leavell, Cristanne Miller, and Robin G. Schulze. Lewisburg, PA: Bucknell University Press, 2005. 266 p. $49.50 (cloth).Throughout their lives, William Carlos Williams claimed...
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Cultures of Modernism: Marianne Moore, Mina Loy, and Else Lasker-Schüler. Gender and Literary Community in New York and Berlin
Cultures of Modernism: Marianne Moore, Mina Loy, and Else Lasker-Schüler. Gender and Literary Community in New York and Berlin. Cristanne Miller. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press, 2005. vii + 267 pp. $60.00 (cloth).Framed by the argument that...
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Late Modernist Poetics: From Pound to Prynne
Late Modernist Poetics: From Pound to Prynne. Anthony Mellors. Manchester University Press, 2005. ix + 230 pp. $50.00 (cloth).A research fellow in the School of English at UCE Birmingham, the editor of fragmente: a magazine of contemporary poetics, and...
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